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Decoupling the direct and indirect effects of nitrogen deposition on ecosystem function.

Manning, Pete and Newington, John E. and Robson, Helen R. and Saunders, Mark and Eggers, Till and Bradford, Mark A. and Bardgett, Richard D. and Bonkowski, Michael and Ellis, Richard J. and Gange, Alan C. and Grayston, Susan J. and Kandeler, Ellen and Marhan, Sven and Reid, Eileen and Tscherko, Dagmar and Godfray, H. Charles J. and Rees, Mark (2006) Decoupling the direct and indirect effects of nitrogen deposition on ecosystem function. Ecology Letters, 9 (9). pp. 1015-1024. ISSN 1461-023X

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Abstract

Elevated nitrogen (N) inputs into terrestrial ecosystems are causing major changes to the composition and functioning of ecosystems. Understanding these changes is challenging because there are complex interactions between 'direct' effects of N on plant physiology and soil biogeochemistry, and 'indirect' effects caused by changes in plant species composition. By planting high N and low N plant community compositions into high and low N deposition model terrestrial ecosystems we experimentally decoupled direct and indirect effects and quantified their contribution to changes in carbon, N and water cycling. Our results show that direct effects on plant growth dominate ecosystem response to N deposition, although long-term carbon storage is reduced under high N plant-species composition. These findings suggest that direct effects of N deposition on ecosystem function could be relatively strong in comparison with the indirect effects of plant community change.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Ecology Letters
Uncontrolled Keywords: Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi • biodiversity • evapotranspiration • frequency dependence • mineral-associated carbon • mineralization • net ecosystem productivity • plant community composition • soil decomposer community • soil enzyme activity
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 10201
Deposited By: Prof Richard Bardgett
Deposited On: 11 Jul 2008 08:52
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2013 10:48
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/10201

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