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Sci Data. 2015 Mar 17;2:150008. doi: 10.1038/sdata.2015.8. eCollection 2015.

A global database of lake surface temperatures collected by in situ and satellite methods from 1985-2009.

Scientific data

Sapna Sharma, Derek K Gray, Jordan S Read, Catherine M O'Reilly, Philipp Schneider, Anam Qudrat, Corinna Gries, Samantha Stefanoff, Stephanie E Hampton, Simon Hook, John D Lenters, David M Livingstone, Peter B McIntyre, Rita Adrian, Mathew G Allan, Orlane Anneville, Lauri Arvola, Jay Austin, John Bailey, Jill S Baron, Justin Brookes, Yuwei Chen, Robert Daly, Martin Dokulil, Bo Dong, Kye Ewing, Elvira de Eyto, David Hamilton, Karl Havens, Shane Haydon, Harald Hetzenauer, Jocelyne Heneberry, Amy L Hetherington, Scott N Higgins, Eric Hixson, Lyubov R Izmest'eva, Benjamin M Jones, Külli Kangur, Peter Kasprzak, Olivier Köster, Benjamin M Kraemer, Michio Kumagai, Esko Kuusisto, George Leshkevich, Linda May, Sally MacIntyre, Dörthe Müller-Navarra, Mikhail Naumenko, Peeter Noges, Tiina Noges, Pius Niederhauser, Ryan P North, Andrew M Paterson, Pierre-Denis Plisnier, Anna Rigosi, Alon Rimmer, Michela Rogora, Lars Rudstam, James A Rusak, Nico Salmaso, Nihar R Samal, Daniel E Schindler, Geoffrey Schladow, Silke R Schmidt, Tracey Schultz, Eugene A Silow, Dietmar Straile, Katrin Teubner, Piet Verburg, Ari Voutilainen, Andrew Watkinson, Gesa A Weyhenmeyer, Craig E Williamson, Kara H Woo


  1. Department of Biology, York University , Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3J 1P3.
  2. California University of Pennsylvania , California, Pennsylvania 15419, USA.
  3. U.S. Geological Survey, Center for Integrated Data Analytics , Middleton, Wisconsin 53562, USA.
  4. Department of Geography-Geology, Illinois State University , Normal, Illinois 61790, USA.
  5. NILU-Norwegian Institute for Air Research , Kjeller 2027, Norway.
  6. Center for Limnology, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin 53706, USA.
  7. Center for Environmental Research, Education and Outreach, Washington State University , Pullman, Washington 99164, USA.
  8. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology , California 91109, USA.
  9. LimnoTech , Ann Arbor, Michigan 48108, USA.
  10. Department of Water Resources and Drinking Water, Eawag (Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology) , Duebendorf CH-8600, Switzerland.
  11. Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries , Berlin D-12587, Germany.
  12. Environmental Research Institute, University of Waikato 3240, New Zealand.
  13. French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA), Station d'hydrobiologie lacustre (UMR CARRTEL) , Thonon les Bains 74200, France.
  14. University of Helsinki, Lammi Biological Station , Helsinki FI-16900, Finland.
  15. Large Lakes Observatory, University of Minnesota Duluth , Duluth 55812, Minnesota, USA.
  16. Vale Living with Lakes Centre, Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change , Sudbury, Ontario, Canada P3E 2C6.
  17. U.S. Geological Survey Fort Collins Science Center, Colorado State University , Fort Collins, Colorado 80523, USA.
  18. Water Research Centre, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Adelaide , Adelaide 5005, Australia.
  19. Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences 210008, China.
  20. Australian Water Quality Center, SA Water Corporation 5001, Australia.
  21. Research Institute for Limnology, University Innsbruck , Mondsee A-5310, Austria.
  22. Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, University at Albany, State University of New York , Albany 12222, New York, USA.
  23. Archbold Biological Station , Venus, Florida 33960, USA.
  24. Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services, Marine Institute , Newport, Co. Mayo Ireland.
  25. Environmental Research Institute, University of Waikato , Hamilton 3240, New Zealand.
  26. Florida Sea Grant and University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences , Gainesville, Florida 32611, USA.
  27. Melbourne Water Corporation , Victoria 3001, Australia.
  28. LUBW Landesanstalt für Umwelt, Messungen und Naturschutz Baden-Württemberg, Institut für Seenforschung , Langenargen D-88045, Germany.
  29. Department of Natural Resources, Cornell University , Ithaca, New York 14853, USA.
  30. International Institute of Sustainable Development-Experimental Lakes Area , Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3B 2L6.
  31. Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District , Holdredge, Nebraska 68949, USA.
  32. Scientific Research Institute of Biology, Irkutsk State University , Irkutsk 664003, Russia.
  33. U.S. Geological Survey Alaska Science Center , Anchorage, Alaska 99508, USA.
  34. Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Estonian University of Life Sciences Rannu , Estonia 61117.
  35. Department of Experimental Limnology, Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology & Inland Fisheries , Berlin 12587, Germany.
  36. Wasserversorgung der Stadt Zurich (WVZ) , Zurich CH-8021, Switzerland.
  37. Lake Biwa Environmental Research Institute , Otsu, Shiga 520-0022, Japan.
  38. Finnish Environment Institute , Helsinki FI-00250, Finland.
  39. NOAA/Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory , Ann Arbor, Michigan 48108, USA.
  40. Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Bush Estate , Midlothian, Scotland EH260QB, UK.
  41. Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, University of California , Santa Barbara, California 93106, USA.
  42. Department of Biology, University of Hamburg , Hamburg 22609, Germany.
  43. Hydrology Laboratory, Limnology Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences , St Petersburg, Russian Federation 196105.
  44. Centre for Limnology, Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Estonian University of Life Sciences , Tartumaa 61117, Estonia.
  45. Amt fur Abfall, Wasser, Energie und Luft, Kanton Zurich , Zurich CH-8005, Switzerland.
  46. Institute of Coastal Research, Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht , Geesthacht 21502, Germany.
  47. Dorset Environmental Science Centre, Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change , Dorset, Ontario, Canada P0A 1E0.
  48. Department of Earth Sciences, Royal Museum for Central Africa , Tervuren 3080, Belgium.
  49. Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research, The Lake Kinneret Limnological Laboratory , Migdal 14950, Israel.
  50. National Research Council, Institute of Ecosystem Study , Verbania, Pallanza 28922, Italy.
  51. IASMA Research and Innovation Centre, Istituto Agrario di S. Michele all'Adige, Fondazione E. Mach, S. Michele all'Adige (Trento) 38010, Italy.
  52. Institute for Sustainable Cities, City University of New York , New York 10065, USA.
  53. School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, University of Washington , Seattle, Washington 98195, USA.
  54. UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center , Incline Village, Nevada 95616, USA.
  55. Sydney Catchment Authority , Penrith, NSW 2750, Australia.
  56. Department of Biology, Universitat Konstanz , Konstanz 78464, Germany.
  57. Department of Limnology and Biological Oceanography, University of Vienna , Vienna A-1090, Austria.
  58. National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research , Hamilton 1010, New Zealand.
  59. Department of Biology, University of Eastern Finland , Kuopio 70211, Finland.
  60. Seqwater , Ipswich QLD 4305, Australia.
  61. Department of Ecology and Genetics/Limnology, Uppsala University , Uppsala 75236, Sweden.
  62. Department of Biology, Miami University , Oxford, Ohio 45056, USA.

PMID: 25977814 PMCID: PMC4423389 DOI: 10.1038/sdata.2015.8


Global environmental change has influenced lake surface temperatures, a key driver of ecosystem structure and function. Recent studies have suggested significant warming of water temperatures in individual lakes across many different regions around the world. However, the spatial and temporal coherence associated with the magnitude of these trends remains unclear. Thus, a global data set of water temperature is required to understand and synthesize global, long-term trends in surface water temperatures of inland bodies of water. We assembled a database of summer lake surface temperatures for 291 lakes collected in situ and/or by satellites for the period 1985-2009. In addition, corresponding climatic drivers (air temperatures, solar radiation, and cloud cover) and geomorphometric characteristics (latitude, longitude, elevation, lake surface area, maximum depth, mean depth, and volume) that influence lake surface temperatures were compiled for each lake. This unique dataset offers an invaluable baseline perspective on global-scale lake thermal conditions as environmental change continues.


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