In Pursuit of Icelandic Midges

Aldo Arellano ’17 spent last summer in Iceland, mostly looking at tiny insects to get a big picture: how midge flies affect the ecosystem in the Nordic island nation.

Arellano was working in the field with an interdisciplinary student team researching the ecology of Iceland’s Lake Mývatn. They studied midge flies and their role in the food webs, in the water and on the land. Mývatn is Icelandic for “the lake of midges,” aptly named for the huge numbers of the tiny insects that hatch there in the summer.

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