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The loss of coastal marshes is a topic of great concern, because these habitats provide tangible ecosystem services and are at risk from sea-level rise and human activities. In recent years, significant effort has gone into understanding and modeling the relationships between the biological and physical factors that contribute to marsh stability. Simulation-based process models suggest that marsh stability is the product of a complex feedback between sediment supply, flooding regime and vegetation response, resulting in elevation gains sufficient to match the combination of relative sea-level rise and losses from erosion. However, there have been few direct, empirical tests of these models, because long-term datasets...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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A positive relationship between interannual sea level and plant growth is thought to stabilize many coastal landforms responding to accelerating rates of sea level rise. Numerical models of delta growth, tidal channel network evolution, and ecosystem resilience incorporate a hump-shaped relationship between inundation and plant primary production, where vegetation growth increases with sea level up to an optimum water depth or inundation frequency. In contrast, we use decade-long measurements of Spartina alterniflora biomass in seven coastal Virginia (USA) marshes to demonstrate that interannual sea level is rarely a primary determinant of vegetation growth. Although we find tepid support for a hump-shaped relationship...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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Nitrogen (N) was added for 35 days in the form of 15NH4Cl to Kings Creek on Konza Prairie, Kansas. Standing stocks of N in key compartments (that is, nutrients, detritus, organisms) were quantified, and the amount of labeled N entering the compartments was analyzed. These data were used to calculate turnover and flux rates of N cycling through the food web, as well as nutrient transformation rates. Inorganic N pools turned over much more rapidly in the water column of this stream than in pelagic systems where comparable measurements have been made. As with other systems, the mass of ammonium was low but it was the key compartment mediating nutrient flux through the ecosystem, whereas dissolved organic N, the primary...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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Despite the frequent citation of wetlands as effective regulators of water quality, few quantitative estimates exist for their cumulative retention of the annual river loads of nutrients or sediments. Here we report measurements of sediment accretion and associated carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus accumulation as sedimentation over feldspar marker horizons placed on floodplains of the non-tidal, freshwater Coastal Plain reaches of seven rivers in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, USA. We then scale these accumulation rates to the entire extent of non-tidal floodplain in the Coastal Plain of each river, defined as riparian area extending from the Fall Line to the upper limit of tidal influence, and compare them to annual...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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The US Environmental Protection Agency established the Adirondack Effects Assessment Program (AEAP) to evaluate and monitor the status of biological communities in lakes in the Adirondack region of New York that have been adversely affected by acid deposition. This program includes chemical analysis of 30 lakes, sampled two to three times each summer. Results of trends analysis for lake chemistry and chlorophyll a (chlor a) are presented for 1994 to 2003, and a general comparison is made with recent results of the Adirondack Long-Term Monitoring (ALTM) Program, which included chemical analysis of all but two of these lakes (plus an additional 24 lakes) monthly, year-round for 1992-2004. Increases in pH were found...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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The cold deserts of the Colorado Plateau contain numerous geologically and geochemically distinct sedimentary bedrock types. In the area near Canyonlands National Park in Southeastern Utah, geochemical variation in geologic substrates is related to the depositional environment with higher concentrations of Fe, Al, P, K, and Mg in sediments deposited in alluvial or marine environments and lower concentrations in bedrock derived from eolian sand dunes. Availability of soil nutrients to vegetation is also controlled by the formation of secondary minerals, particularly for P and Ca availability, which, in some geologic settings, appears closely related to variation of CaCO3 and Ca-phosphates in soils. However, the results...
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Nitrogen (N) is a critical limiting nutrient that regulates plant productivity and the cycling of other essential elements in forests. We measured foliar and soil nutrients in 22 young Douglas-fir stands in the Oregon Coast Range to examine patterns of nutrient availability across a gradient of N-poor to N-rich soils. N in surface mineral soil ranged from 0.15 to 1.05% N, and was positively related to a doubling of foliar N across sites. Foliar N in half of the sites exceeded 1.4% N, which is considered above the threshold of N-limitation in coastal Oregon Douglas-fir. Available nitrate increased five-fold across this gradient, whereas exchangeable magnesium (Mg) and calcium (Ca) in soils declined, suggesting that...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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This review article describes vectors for nitrogen and phosphorus delivery to riparian zones in semiarid African savannas, the processing of nutrients in the riparian zone and the effect of disturbance on these processes. Semiarid savannas exhibit sharp seasonality, complex hillslope hydrology and high spatial heterogeneity, all of which ultimately impact nutrient fluxes between riparian, upland and aquatic environments. Our review shows that strong environmental drivers such as fire and herbivory enhance nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment transport to lower slope positions by shaping vegetative patterns. These vectors differ significantly from other arid and semiarid ecosystems, and from mesic ecosystems where the...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecosystems
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This dataset was last updated 02/2017. This version includes a new tidal restrictions metric that assesses the effect of undersized culverts and bridges on tidal regime.The previous version (3.1) was updated on 05/2016 by incorporating a revised version of the land cover classification, DSLland Version 3.1, developed by UMass, which included the addition of The Nature Conservancy’s Northeast lakes and ponds classification.This dataset depicts the ecological integrity of locations (represented by 30 m grid cells) throughout the northeastern United States based on environmental conditions existing in approximately 2010. Ecological integrity is defined as the ability of an area (e.g., local site or landscape) to sustain...


map background search result map search result map Controls of Bedrock Geochemistry on Soil and Plant Nutrients in Southeastern Utah Index of Ecological Integrity, Stratified by Ecosystem, Region-wide, Version 3.2, Northeast U.S. Controls of Bedrock Geochemistry on Soil and Plant Nutrients in Southeastern Utah Index of Ecological Integrity, Stratified by Ecosystem, Region-wide, Version 3.2, Northeast U.S.