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leaf litter decomposition

Yanyu Song, Changchun Song, Jiusheng Ren, Wenwen Tan, Shaofei Jin, Lei Jiang
Nitrogen (N) availability affects litter decomposition and nutrient dynamics, especially in N-limited ecosystems. We investigated the response of litter decomposition to N additions in Eriophorum vaginatum and Vaccinium uliginosum peatlands. These two species dominate peatlands in Northeast China. In 2012, mesh bags containing senesced leaf litter of Eriophorum vaginatum and Vaccinium uliginosum were placed in N addition plots and sprayed monthly for two years with NH4NO3 solution at dose rates of 0, 6, 12, and 24gNm-2year-1 (CK, N1, N2 and N3, respectively)...
January 2, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Daan Blok, Samuel Faucherre, Imre Banyasz, Riikka Rinnan, Anders Michelsen, Bo Elberling
Tundra regions are projected to warm rapidly during the coming decades. The tundra biome holds the largest terrestrial carbon pool, largely contained in frozen permafrost soils. With warming, these permafrost soils may thaw and become available for microbial decomposition, potentially providing a positive feedback to global warming. Warming may directly stimulate microbial metabolism but may also indirectly stimulate organic matter turnover through increased plant productivity by soil priming from root exudates and accelerated litter turnover rates...
December 13, 2017: Global Change Biology
Juanita Mora-Gómez, Sofia Duarte, Fernanda Cássio, Cláudia Pascoal, Anna M Romaní
Drought frequency and intensity in some temperate regions are forecasted to increase under the ongoing global change, which might expose permanent streams to intermittence and have severe repercussions on stream communities and ecosystem processes. In this study, we investigated the effect of drought duration on microbial decomposition of Populus nigra leaf litter in a temperate permanent stream (Oliveira, NW Portugal). Specifically, we measured the response of the structural (assemblage composition, bacterial and fungal biomass) and functional (leaf litter decomposition, extracellular enzyme activities (EEA), and fungal sporulation) parameters of fungal and bacterial communities on leaf litter exposed to emersion during different time periods (7, 14 and 21d)...
November 28, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
Ya-Jun Xie, Yong-Hong Xie, Hua-Yun Xiao, Zheng-Miao Deng, Ying Pan, Bai-Han Pan, Jia-Yu Hu
Aromatic plants show antimicrobial activity due to their essential oils, but their effect on litter decomposition is unclear. In this study, we evaluated the biomass loss and nutrient dynamics in leaf litters of two macrophytes (Miscanthus sacchariflorus and Carex brevicuspis) with and without addition of powdered material of the aromatic plant Polygonum hydropiper or the non-aromatic plant C. brevicuspis. The two powders had similar basic chemical qualities but P. hydropiperi had a higher essential oils concentration...
November 30, 2017: Scientific Reports
Sabine Both, Dafydd M O Elias, Ully H Kritzler, Nick J Ostle, David Johnson
In hyperdiverse tropical forests, the key drivers of litter decomposition are poorly understood despite its crucial role in facilitating nutrient availability for plants and microbes. Selective logging is a pressing land use with potential for considerable impacts on plant-soil interactions, litter decomposition, and nutrient cycling. Here, in Borneo's tropical rainforests, we test the hypothesis that decomposition is driven by litter quality and that there is a significant "home-field advantage," that is positive interaction between local litter quality and land use...
November 2017: Ecology and Evolution
Guillaume Patoine, Madhav P Thakur, Julia Friese, Charles Nock, Lydia Hönig, Josephine Haase, Michael Scherer-Lorenzen, Nico Eisenhauer
A better understanding of the mechanisms driving litter diversity effects on decomposition is needed to predict how biodiversity losses affect this crucial ecosystem process. In a microcosm study, we investigated the effects of litter functional diversity and two major groups of soil macro-detritivores on the mass loss of tree leaf litter mixtures. Furthermore, we tested the effects of litter trait community means and dissimilarity on litter mass loss for seven traits relevant to decomposition. We expected macro-detritivore effects on litter mass loss to be most pronounced in litter mixtures of high functional diversity...
November 2017: Pedobiologia
Colin Averill, Bonnie Waring
The availability of nitrogen (N) is a critical control on the cycling and storage of soil carbon (C). Yet there are conflicting conceptual models to explain how N availability influences decomposition of organic matter by soil microbial communities. Several lines of evidence suggest that N availability limits decomposition: the earliest stages of leaf litter decay are associated with a net import of N from the soil environment, and both observations and models show that high-N organic matter decomposes more rapidly...
November 9, 2017: Global Change Biology
Ryan M Burrows, Helen Rutlidge, Nick R Bond, Stefan M Eberhard, Alexandra Auhl, Martin S Andersen, Dominic G Valdez, Mark J Kennard
Organic carbon cycling is a fundamental process that underpins energy transfer through the biosphere. However, little is known about the rates of particulate organic carbon processing in the hyporheic zone of intermittent streams, which is often the only wetted environment remaining when surface flows cease. We used leaf litter and cotton decomposition assays, as well as rates of microbial respiration, to quantify rates of organic carbon processing in surface and hyporheic environments of intermittent and perennial streams under a range of substrate saturation conditions...
October 16, 2017: Scientific Reports
Biying Zhao, Peng Xing, Qinglong L Wu
Knowledge of aquatic microbes involved in macrophyte leaf litter decomposition is still scarce in freshwater lakes. In situ experiments (150 days) were conducted to study the decomposition processes of macrophyte leaf litters: Zizania latifolia (Zl), Hydrilla verticillata (Hv), and Nymphoides peltata (Np). The decomposition of Np leaf litter was fastest whereas Zl was slowest. The alpha diversity of both bacterial and fungal communities significantly increased, and their community structures showed significant variations over time...
September 4, 2017: FEMS Microbiology Ecology
Margarida Soares, Emma S Kritzberg, Johannes Rousk
Microbial decomposers colonising submerged leaf litter are in close spatial proximity with periphytic algae and can use carbon (C) exudates released during photosynthesis. We investigated whether labile C delivered as algal exudates could affect the microbial colonisation and decomposition of leaf litter. Using microcosms, we submerged leaf litter in pond water and monitored fungal and bacterial growth over time and tested the effect of algal photosynthetic exudates by comparing microcosms in light and dark...
September 1, 2017: FEMS Microbiology Ecology
Mia R Maltz, Kathleen K Treseder, Krista L McGuire
Habitat fragmentation is widespread across ecosystems, detrimentally affecting biodiversity. Although most habitat fragmentation studies have been conducted on macroscopic organisms, microbial communities and fungal processes may also be threatened by fragmentation. This study investigated whether fragmentation, and the effects of fragmentation on plants, altered fungal diversity and function within a fragmented shrubland in southern California. Using fluorimetric techniques, we assayed enzymes from plant litter collected from fragments of varying sizes to investigate enzymatic responses to fragmentation...
2017: PloS One
Jochen P Zubrod, Rebecca Bundschuh, Dominic Englert, Markus Rohrberg, Matthias V Wieczorek, Nikita Bakanov, Ralf Schulz, Mirco Bundschuh
Invertebrate-mediated leaf litter decomposition is frequently used to assess stress-related implications in stream ecosystem integrity. In situ measures such as the mass loss from leaf bags or the feeding of caged invertebrates deployed for days or weeks may, however, fail to detect transient effects due to recovery or compensatory mechanisms. We assessed the relevance of transient effects using the peak exposure towards an insecticide (i.e., etofenprox) as a model scenario at three levels of complexity. These were 1) the assessment of the decomposition realised by invertebrate communities in stream mesocosms over 21 days via leaf bags, 2) 7-days lasting in situ bioassays quantifying the leaf consumption of Gammarus fossarum, and 3) a laboratory experiment determining the daily feeding rate of the same species over 7 days...
December 2017: Environmental Pollution
N A Rossiter-Rachor, S A Setterfield, L B Hutley, D McMaster, S Schmidt, M M Douglas
The African grass Andropogon gayanus Kunth. is invading Australian savannas, altering their ecological and biogeochemical function. To assess impacts on nitrogen (N) cycling, we quantified litter decomposition and N dynamics of grass litter in native grass and A. gayanus invaded savanna using destructive in situ grass litter harvests and litterbag incubations (soil surface and aerial position). Only 30% of the A. gayanus in situ litter decomposed, compared to 61% of the native grass litter, due to the former being largely comprised of highly resistant A...
September 15, 2017: Scientific Reports
Sofia Duarte, Juanita Mora-Gómez, Anna M Romaní, Fernanda Cássio, Cláudia Pascoal
A consequence of drought in streams is the emersion of decomposing leaf litter, which may alter organic matter recycling. We assessed the effects of emersion on decomposition of black poplar leaves and associated microbes (microbial biomass, extracellular enzyme activities and microbial diversity) in two streams with distinct characteristics, in particular nutrients, temperature and oxygen levels. Leaf decomposition rates, fungal biomass and extracellular enzyme activities were lower in the most impacted stream (high nutrients and temperature, low oxygen)...
September 15, 2017: Environmental Microbiology Reports
Suhaila Ab Hamid, Che Salmah Md Rawi
Leaf litter decomposition in a tropical stream was examined in two types of leaf packs; single species leaf packs of Pometia pinnata and two species leaf packs of equal combination of Pometia pinnata and Dolichandrone spathacea leaves. Both leaf packs were immersed in a river and weekly examined for remains of decomposed leaves and presence of EPT. In the control leaf packs, leaves in the two species leaf packs treatments decomposed within 35 days, faster than in single species leaf packs which decomposed after 42 days...
July 2017: Tropical Life Sciences Research
Jenna M Zukswert, Cindy E Prescott
Litter 'quality' or decomposability has historically been estimated through measuring chemical attributes, such as concentrations of nitrogen or 'lignin'. More recently, foliar functional traits, which may incorporate indications of the physical structures of tissues, have been found to correlate with litter mass loss rates. However, these traits may not be adequate to predict early rates of mass loss, in which two factors are crucial: the amount of material quickly lost through leaching, and the ease of access of decomposer organisms to the more labile tissues in the interior of the litter...
October 2017: Oecologia
Luz Boyero, Manuel A S Graça, Alan M Tonin, Javier Pérez, Andrew J Swafford, Verónica Ferreira, Andrea Landeira-Dabarca, Markos A Alexandrou, Mark O Gessner, Brendan G McKie, Ricardo J Albariño, Leon A Barmuta, Marcos Callisto, Julián Chará, Eric Chauvet, Checo Colón-Gaud, David Dudgeon, Andrea C Encalada, Ricardo Figueroa, Alexander S Flecker, Tadeusz Fleituch, André Frainer, José F Gonçalves, Julie E Helson, Tomoya Iwata, Jude Mathooko, Charles M'Erimba, Catherine M Pringle, Alonso Ramírez, Christopher M Swan, Catherine M Yule, Richard G Pearson
Plant litter represents a major basal resource in streams, where its decomposition is partly regulated by litter traits. Litter-trait variation may determine the latitudinal gradient in decomposition in streams, which is mainly microbial in the tropics and detritivore-mediated at high latitudes. However, this hypothesis remains untested, as we lack information on large-scale trait variation for riparian litter. Variation cannot easily be inferred from existing leaf-trait databases, since nutrient resorption can cause traits of litter and green leaves to diverge...
September 5, 2017: Scientific Reports
Franca Marian, Dorothee Sandmann, Valentyna Krashevska, Mark Maraun, Stefan Scheu
We investigated how altitude affects the decomposition of leaf and root litter in the Andean tropical montane rainforest of southern Ecuador, that is, through changes in the litter quality between altitudes or other site-specific differences in microenvironmental conditions. Leaf litter from three abundant tree species and roots of different diameter from sites at 1,000, 2,000, and 3,000 m were placed in litterbags and incubated for 6, 12, 24, 36, and 48 months. Environmental conditions at the three altitudes and the sampling time were the main factors driving litter decomposition, while origin, and therefore quality of the litter, was of minor importance...
August 2017: Ecology and Evolution
Jingjing Du, Yuyan Zhang, Lina Liu, Mingxiang Qv, Yanna Lv, Yifei Yin, Yinfei Zhou, Minghui Cui, Yanfeng Zhu, Hongzhong Zhang
ZnO nanoparticles is one of the most used materials in a wide range including antibacterial coating, electronic device, and personal care products. With the development of nanotechnology, ecotoxicology of ZnO nanoparticles has been received increasing attention. To assess the phototoxicity of ZnO nanoparticles in aquatic ecosystem, microcosm experiments were conducted on Populus nigra L. leaf litter decomposition under combined effect of ZnO nanoparticles and visible light radiation. Litter decomposition rate, pH value, extracellular enzyme activity, as well as the relative contributions of fungal community to litter decomposition were studied...
August 25, 2017: Chemosphere
Sahadevan Seena, Francisco Carvalho, Fernanda Cássio, Cláudia Pascoal
A common watershed restoration practice to improve water quality and stream ecosystem functions and services is replanting riparian corridors with plant species that may differ from those of natural communities. This restoration practice may have consequences on the aquatic ecosystem processes because organisms obtain energy from leaf litter inputs of the riparian zones. Leaf litter decomposition in streams is a vital ecosystem-level process, which depends on the activity of microorganisms and invertebrates...
December 31, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
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