Nutrient (total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TP)) are considered the major indicators to be impacted by wind speed in shallow lakes and reservoirs. As a reservoir situated in Jilin Province, China, Yangshapao Reservoir has been employed for irrigation and urban water use. After 2 years’ observation carried out on water quality and wind speed, it was found that the TN, NH4 and TP are significantly correlated with the bottom shear stress attributed to wind, whereas the dissolved phosphorus (DP) is not. Bottom shear stress is also noticeably associated with dissolved oxygen (DO), thus promoting nutrient release into the water body. In winter, ice can effectively inhibit the wind-induced shear stress, and the TP concentration is evidently lower than in the other seasons. This scenario should be considered in the management of the water quality of the lake and similar lakes.

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