Jul 22, 2006

Whole-stream nitrate addition affects litter decomposition and associated fungi but not invertebrates

Oecologia
Verónica FerreiraManuel A S Graça

Abstract

We assessed the effect of whole-stream nitrate enrichment on decomposition of three substrates differing in nutrient quality (alder and oak leaves and balsa veneers) and associated fungi and invertebrates. During the 3-month nitrate enrichment of a headwater stream in central Portugal, litter was incubated in the reference site (mean NO3-N 82 microg l-1) and four enriched sites along the nitrate gradient (214-983 microg NO3-N l-1). A similar decomposition experiment was also carried out in the same sites at ambient nutrient conditions the following year (33-104 microg NO3-N l-1). Decomposition rates and sporulation of aquatic hyphomycetes associated with litter were determined in both experiments, whereas N and P content of litter, associated fungal biomass and invertebrates were followed only during the nitrate addition experiment. Nitrate enrichment stimulated decomposition of oak leaves and balsa veneers, fungal biomass accrual on alder leaves and balsa veneers and sporulation of aquatic hyphomycetes on all substrates. Nitrate concentration in stream water showed a strong asymptotic relationship (Michaelis-Menten-type saturation model) with temperature-adjusted decomposition rates and percentage initial litter mass converted...Continue Reading

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  • Citations34

References

Mentioned in this Paper

Brachiopoda
Ochroma pyramidale
Sporulation
Quercus
Conidia
Filamentous fungus
Reproduction
Allergy Testing Alder
Red Phosphorus
Streams

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