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Photo of Lesht, Barry

Barry Lesht, PhD

Adjunct Professor

Earth and Environmental Sciences


At present I’m most interested in exploring how observations made by satellites can be applied to the study of biological and geological processes in the Great Lakes.  By developing new algorithms and by applying advanced statistical and data mining methods, the research is aimed at improving both our overall understanding the lakes and our ability to monitor their conditions.

Selected Publications

  • Barbiero, R.P, B.M. Lesht, G.J. Warren, L.G. Rudstam, J.M. Watkins, E.D. Reavie, K. E. Kovalenko and A.Y. Karatayev (in press). A comparative examination of recent changes in nutrients and lower food web structure in Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, Journal of Great Lakes Research.
  • Barbiero, R.P., B.M. Lesht, E.K. Hinchey and T.G. Nettesheim (in press). A brief history of the U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office’s water quality survey. Journal of Great Lakes Research,
  • Lesht, B.M., R.P. Barbiero and G. J. Warren (in press). Using satellite observations to assess the spatial representativeness of the GLNPO water quality monitoring program. Journal of Great Lakes Research,
  • Warren, G.J, B.M. Lesht and R.P. Barbiero (in press). Estimation of the width of the nearshore zone in Lake Michigan using eleven years of MODIS satellite imagery. Journal of Great Lakes Research,
  • Burlakova, L.E., K.E. Kovalenko, K.L. Schmude, R.P. Barbiero, A. Y. Karatayev and B.M. Lesht (in press). Development of new indices of Great Lakes water quality based on profundal benthic communities, Journal of Great Lakes Research,
  • Lesht, B.M., R. P. Barbiero and G. J. Warren, 2016. Verification of a simple band ratio algorithm for retrieving Great Lakes open water surface chlorophyll concentrations from satellite observations. Journal of Great Lakes Research, 42(2):448-454,
  • Warner, D.M. and B.M. Lesht, 2015.  Relative importance of phosphorus, invasive mussels and climate for patterns of chlorophyll a and primary production in Lakes Michigan and Huron.  Freshwater Biology, 60:1029-1043.
  • Barbiero, R.P., B.M. Lesht, G.J. Warren, 2014.  Recent changes in the offshore crustacean zooplankton community of Lake Ontario.  J. Great Lakes Res., 40(40):898-910.
  • Bunnell, D.B., R.P. Barbiero, S.A. Ludsin, C.P. Madenjian, G.J. Warren, D.M. Dolan, T.O. Brenden, O.T. Gorman, J.X. He, T.H. Johengen, B.F. Lantry, B.M. Lesht, T.F.Nalepa, S.C. Riley, C.M. Riseng, T.J. Treska, I. Tsehaye, M.G. Walsh, D.M. Warner, and B.C. Weidel, 2014.  Changing ecosystem dynamics in the Laurentian Great Lakes: bottom-up and top-down regulation.  Bioscience, 64(1):26-39.
  • Lesht, B.M., R. P. Barbiero, and G.J. Warren, 2013.  A band-ratio algorithm for retrieving open-lake chlorophyll values from satellite observations of the Great Lakes.  J. Great Lakes Res., 39(1):138-152.
  • Barbiero, R.P., B.M. Lesht, G.J. Warren, 2012.  Convergence of tropic state and lower food web in Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior.  J. Great Lakes Res., 38(2):368-380.
  • Lesht, B.M., R. P. Barbiero, and G.J. Warren, 2012.  Satellite ocean color algorithms: A review of applications to the Great Lakes.  J. Great Lakes Res., 38(1):49-60.
  • Barbiero, R.P., K. Schmude, B.M. Lesht, C.M. Riseng, G.J. Warren, and M.L. Tuchman, 2011.  Trends in Diporeia populations across the Lauentian Great Lakes, 1997-2009.  J. Great Lakes Res., 37(1):9-17.
  • Barbiero, R.P., B.M. Lesht, G.J. Warren, 2011.  Evidence for bottom-up control of recent shifts in the pelagic food web of Lake Huron.  J. Great Lakes Res., 37(1):78-85.
  • Stroud, J.R., M.L Stein, B.M. Lesht, D.J. Schwab, D. Beletsky, 2010.  An ensemble Kalman filter and smoother for satellite data assimilation.  J. Amer. Statist. Assn., 105(491):978-990.


BA Earth Sciences, 1971, Washington University of St. Louis

MA Geophysical Sciences, 1973, University of Chicago

PhD Geophysical Sciences, 1977, University of Chicago

Post-Doctoral Associate, 1977-1978, Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island

National Research Council Fellow, 1978-1979, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratories