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William Crumpton

William G Crumpton

  • University Professor
  • Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology
My training is from Michigan State University (PhD, Limnology) and the University of West Florida (MS, marine science, BS, interdisciplinary science). Before coming to ISU, I spent two years as a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the UC-Davis field station at Lake Tahoe.

Contact Info

129 Bessey
2200 Osborn Dr.


More Information


My research focuses on wetland processes and functions, including the dynamics of energy flow and nutrient transformation in wetlands, the fate and effects of agricultural contaminants in wetlands, and the role of restored and constructed wetlands in watershed hydrology and water quality. My work combines experimental studies in wetland mesocosms, field studies in natural and restored wetlands, and dynamic simulation modeling in an effort to understand critical processes and predict wetland performance.

Broader Impact

Much of my current work focuses on the development and application of performance forecast models for siting, design and assessment of wetland restorations in agricultural watersheds. We have developed and field validated a general model for nutrient loss in wetlands receiving non-point source loads and have integrated this model in a watershed-scale framework for performance forecast modeling of alternative wetland restoration scenarios. This work provided the research foundation for the Iowa Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, a ten-year, $89 million program using targeted wetland restorations to reduce nitrate loads from tile-drained agricultural watersheds. 

Key Environmental Science Publications

Stenback, G.A., W. G. Crumpton, K.Schilling and M. Helmers. 2011. Rating curve estimation of nutrient loads in Iowa rivers. Journal of Hydrology. 396:158-169

Miller, B. A., W.G. Crumpton, and A. van der Valk. 2009. Spatial distribution of historical wetland classes on the Des Moines Lobe of Iowa. Wetlands, 29:1146-1152

Rose, C. and W.G. Crumpton. 2006. Spatial patterns in dissolved oxygen and methane concentrations in a prairie pothole wetland in Iowa, USA. Wetlands, 26:1020-1025

Crumpton, W.G. 2001. Using wetlands for water quality improvement in agricultural watersheds: the importance of a watershed scale perspective. Water Science and Technology. 44: 559-564