Meaning of eutrophic in English:


Pronunciation /juːˈtrəʊfɪk/ /juːˈtrɒfɪk/


  • (of a lake or other body of water) rich in nutrients and so supporting a dense plant population, the decomposition of which kills animal life by depriving it of oxygen.

    ‘Dynamics of phytoplankton succession coupled to species diversity as a system-level tool for study of Microcystis population dynamics in eutrophic lakes’
    Compare with dystrophic and oligotrophic
    • ‘In eutrophic Lake Hiidenvesi, we studied the possibility that water quality indirectly affects mysids by forcing them to habitats where they are vulnerable to fish predation.’
    • ‘Extremely eutrophic waterbodies are polluted because they often cannot support a fishery, cannot be used for drinking water, and have few recreational opportunities and poor esthetics.’
    • ‘Our laboratory has also reported alterations in the synthesis, plasma concentrations and hepatic metabolism of androgens in alligators living in eutrophic lakes with exposure to pesticides.’
    • ‘Our results suggest that in eutrophic lakes fish predation on zooplankton may be more important than nutrient excretion by fish for the structure and dynamics of planktonic communities.’


Early 18th century (denoting a medicine promoting good nutrition): from Greek eutrophia, from eu ‘well’ + trephein ‘nourish’. The current sense dates from the 1930s.