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Relationships between enchytraeid worms (Oligochaeta), temperature, and the release of dissolved organic carbon from blanket peat in Northern England.

Cole, Lisa and Bardgett, Richard D. and Ineson, Philip and Adamson, John K. (2002) Relationships between enchytraeid worms (Oligochaeta), temperature, and the release of dissolved organic carbon from blanket peat in Northern England. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 34 (5). pp. 599-607. ISSN 0038-0717

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Abstract

Over a period of 1 yr, we examined the dynamics of a community of enchytraeid worms in a blanket peat soil in relation to the prevailing climate and the release of dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Our objectives were two-fold: first, we aimed to establish whether there is a relationship between climatic variables and the density of enchytraeid populations; and also assess whether changes in the density of enchytraeid populations, caused by climate, were related to the release of DOC. Our second aim was to predict the consequences of atmospheric warming for the enchytraeid community at the site, and, in turn, the biological contribution to DOC release. Positive linear relationships between the abundance of enchytraeids and soil temperature were found, as well as with concentrations of DOC in the soil solution: We calculate that at mean field density, enchytraeids currently account for up to 26% of the DOC produced in the surface (upper 10 cm) blanket peat. These relationships suggest that future soil warming caused by climate change could increase enchytraeid abundance by 43% and C release by 11% in these peatlands, based on an increase in mean monthly air temperatures of 2.5 °C.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Soil Biology and Biochemistry
Uncontrolled Keywords: Enchytraeids ; Climate ; Dissolved organic carbon ; Blanket peat
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 10279
Deposited By: Prof Richard Bardgett
Deposited On: 10 Jul 2008 16:44
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2013 10:48
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/10279

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