Articles | Volume 13, issue 19
Research article 13 Oct 2016
Research article | 13 Oct 2016
Microbial dynamics in a High Arctic glacier forefield: a combined field, laboratory, and modelling approach
James A. Bradley et al.
J. A. Bradley, A. M. Anesio, J. S. Singarayer, M. R. Heath, and S. Arndt
Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 3441–3470,Short summary
Recent climate warming causing ice retreat exposes new terrestrial ecosystems that have potentially significant yet largely unexplored roles on large-scale biogeochemical cycling and climate. SHIMMER (Soil biogeocHemIcal Model for Microbial Ecosystem Response) is a new numerical model designed to simulate microbial community establishment and elemental cycling (C, N and P) during initial soil formation in exposed glacier forefields. It is also transferable to other extreme ecosystem types.
William D. Smith, Stuart A. Dunning, Stephen Brough, Neil Ross, and Jon Telling
Earth Surf. Dynam., 8, 1053–1065,Short summary
Glacial landslides are difficult to detect and likely underestimated due to rapid covering or dispersal. Without improved detection rates we cannot constrain their impact on glacial dynamics or their potential climatically driven increases in occurrence. Here we present a new open-access tool (GERALDINE) that helps a user detect 92 % of these events over the past 38 years on a global scale. We demonstrate its ability by identifying two new, large glacial landslides in the Hayes Range, Alaska.
Miranda J. Nicholes, Christopher Williamson, Martyn Tranter, Alexandra Holland, Marian Yallop, and Alexandre Anesio
Publication in BG not foreseenShort summary
This incubation experiment assessed the role of solar radiation and heterotrophic bacteria in the degradation of organic carbon in surface ice of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Although ultraviolet radiation was found to alter carbon composition, heterotrophic degradation caused the greatest changes to both carbon composition and quantity. Both processes are likely interlinked within the surface ice and are fundamental to controlling the composition of carbon exported to downstream environments.
Matteo Puglini, Victor Brovkin, Pierre Regnier, and Sandra Arndt
Biogeosciences, 17, 3247–3275,Short summary
A reaction-transport model to assess the potential non-turbulent methane flux from the East Siberian Arctic sediments to water columns is applied here. We show that anaerobic oxidation of methane (AOM) is an efficient filter except for high values of sedimentation rate and advective flow, which enable considerable non-turbulent steady-state methane fluxes. Significant transient methane fluxes can also occur during the building-up phase of the AOM-performing biomass microbial community.
Andrew J. Tedstone, Joseph M. Cook, Christopher J. Williamson, Stefan Hofer, Jenine McCutcheon, Tristram Irvine-Fynn, Thomas Gribbin, and Martyn Tranter
The Cryosphere, 14, 521–538,Short summary
Albedo describes how much light that hits a surface is reflected without being absorbed. Low-albedo ice surfaces melt more quickly. There are large differences in the albedo of bare-ice areas of the Greenland Ice Sheet. They are caused both by dark glacier algae and by the condition of the underlying ice. Changes occur over centimetres to metres, so satellites do not always detect real albedo changes. Estimates of melt made using satellite measurements therefore tend to be underestimates.
Joseph M. Cook, Andrew J. Tedstone, Christopher Williamson, Jenine McCutcheon, Andrew J. Hodson, Archana Dayal, McKenzie Skiles, Stefan Hofer, Robert Bryant, Owen McAree, Andrew McGonigle, Jonathan Ryan, Alexandre M. Anesio, Tristram D. L. Irvine-Fynn, Alun Hubbard, Edward Hanna, Mark Flanner, Sathish Mayanna, Liane G. Benning, Dirk van As, Marian Yallop, James B. McQuaid, Thomas Gribbin, and Martyn Tranter
The Cryosphere, 14, 309–330,Short summary
Melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) is a major source of uncertainty for sea level rise projections. Ice-darkening due to the growth of algae has been recognized as a potential accelerator of melting. This paper measures and models the algae-driven ice melting and maps the algae over the ice sheet for the first time. We estimate that as much as 13 % total runoff from the south-western GrIS can be attributed to these algae, showing that they must be included in future mass balance models.
Alexandra T. Holland, Christopher J. Williamson, Fotis Sgouridis, Andrew J. Tedstone, Jenine McCutcheon, Joseph M. Cook, Ewa Poniecka, Marian L. Yallop, Martyn Tranter, Alexandre M. Anesio, and The Black & Bloom Group
Biogeosciences, 16, 3283–3296,Short summary
This paper provides a preliminary data set for dissolved nutrient abundance in the Dark Zone of the Greenland Ice Sheet. This 15-year marked darkening has since been attributed to glacier algae blooms, yet has not been accounted for in current melt rate models. We conclude that the dissolved organic phase dominates surface ice environments and that factors other than macronutrient limitation control the extent and magnitude of the glacier algae blooms.
Fabiola Murguia-Flores, Sandra Arndt, Anita L. Ganesan, Guillermo Murray-Tortarolo, and Edward R. C. Hornibrook
Geosci. Model Dev., 11, 2009–2032,Short summary
Soil bacteria known as methanotrophs are the only biological sink for atmospheric methane (CH4). Their activity depends on climatic and edaphic conditions, thus varies spatially and temporarily. Based on this, we developed a model (MeMo v1.0) to assess the global CH4 consumption by soils. The global CH4 uptake was 33.5 Tg CH4 yr-1 for 1990–2009, with an increasing trend of 0.1 Tg CH4 yr-2. The regional analysis proved that warm and semiarid regions represent the most efficient CH4 sink.
Joseph M. Cook, Andrew J. Hodson, Alex S. Gardner, Mark Flanner, Andrew J. Tedstone, Christopher Williamson, Tristram D. L. Irvine-Fynn, Johan Nilsson, Robert Bryant, and Martyn Tranter
The Cryosphere, 11, 2611–2632,Short summary
Biological growth darkens snow and ice, causing it to melt faster. This is often referred to as
bioalbedo. Quantifying bioalbedo has not been achieved because of difficulties in isolating the biological contribution from the optical properties of ice and snow, and from inorganic impurities in field studies. In this paper, we provide a physical model that enables bioalbedo to be quantified from first principles and we use it to guide future field studies.
Andrew J. Tedstone, Jonathan L. Bamber, Joseph M. Cook, Christopher J. Williamson, Xavier Fettweis, Andrew J. Hodson, and Martyn Tranter
The Cryosphere, 11, 2491–2506,Short summary
The bare ice albedo of the south-west Greenland ice sheet varies dramatically between years. The reasons are unclear but likely involve darkening by inorganic particulates, cryoconite and ice algae. We use satellite imagery to examine dark ice dynamics and climate model outputs to find likely climatological controls. Outcropping particulates can explain the spatial extent of dark ice, but the darkening itself is likely due to ice algae growth controlled by meltwater and light availability.
Goulven Gildas Laruelle, Nicolas Goossens, Sandra Arndt, Wei-Jun Cai, and Pierre Regnier
Biogeosciences, 14, 2441–2468,Short summary
The C-GEM generic reactive-transport model is applied to each tidal estuary of the US East Coast. Seasonal simulations are performed, which allows the understanding and quantification of the effect of the estuarine filter on the lateral fluxes of carbon coming from rivers.
Sophie L. Nixon, Jon P. Telling, Jemma L. Wadham, and Charles S. Cockell
Biogeosciences, 14, 1445–1455,Short summary
Despite their permanently cold and dark characteristics, subglacial environments (glacier ice–sediment interface) are known to harbour active microbial communities. However, the role of microbial iron cycling in these environments is poorly understood. Here we show that subglacial sediments harbour active iron-reducing microorganisms, and they appear to be cold-adapted. These results may have important implications for global biogeochemical iron cycling and export to marine ecosystems.
Robert Raiswell, Jon R. Hawkings, Liane G. Benning, Alex R. Baker, Ros Death, Samuel Albani, Natalie Mahowald, Michael D. Krom, Simon W. Poulton, Jemma Wadham, and Martyn Tranter
Biogeosciences, 13, 3887–3900,Short summary
Iron is an essential nutrient for plankton growth. One important source of iron is wind-blown dust. The polar oceans are remote from dust sources but melting icebergs supply sediment that contains iron which is potentially available to plankton. We show that iceberg sediments contain more potentially bioavailable iron than wind-blown dust. Iceberg sources will become increasingly important with climate change and increased plankton growth can remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Emily C. O'Donnell, Jemma L. Wadham, Grzegorz P. Lis, Martyn Tranter, Amy E. Pickard, Marek Stibal, Paul Dewsbury, and Sean Fitzsimons
Biogeosciences, 13, 3833–3846,Short summary
We use a novel ion chromatographic analysis that provides the first identification and quantification of major low-molecular-weight dissolved organic carbon (LMW-DOC) compounds in basal ice. LMW-DOC concentrations were dependent on the bioavailability of the overridden organic carbon, which in turn was influenced by the type of overridden material. The overridden material may thus act as a direct (abiotic leaching) and indirect (microbial cycling) source of DOC to the subglacial environment.
Chiara Volta, Goulven Gildas Laruelle, Sandra Arndt, and Pierre Regnier
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 20, 991–1030,Short summary
A generic estuarine model is applied to three idealized tidal estuaries representing the main hydro-geometrical estuarine classes. The study provides insight into the estuarine biogeochemical dynamics, in particular the air-water CO2/sub> flux, as well as the potential response to future environmental changes and to uncertainties in model parameter values. We believe that our approach could help improving upscaling strategies to better integrate estuaries in regional/global biogeochemical studies.
J. A. Bradley, A. M. Anesio, J. S. Singarayer, M. R. Heath, and S. Arndt
Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 3441–3470,Short summary
Recent climate warming causing ice retreat exposes new terrestrial ecosystems that have potentially significant yet largely unexplored roles on large-scale biogeochemical cycling and climate. SHIMMER (Soil biogeocHemIcal Model for Microbial Ecosystem Response) is a new numerical model designed to simulate microbial community establishment and elemental cycling (C, N and P) during initial soil formation in exposed glacier forefields. It is also transferable to other extreme ecosystem types.
E. C. Lawson, J. L. Wadham, M. Tranter, M. Stibal, G. P. Lis, C. E. H. Butler, J. Laybourn-Parry, P. Nienow, D. Chandler, and P. Dewsbury
Biogeosciences, 11, 4015–4028,
C. Volta, S. Arndt, H. H. G. Savenije, G. G. Laruelle, and P. Regnier
Geosci. Model Dev., 7, 1271–1295,
H. C. Price, B. J. Murray, J. Mattsson, D. O'Sullivan, T. W. Wilson, K. J. Baustian, and L. G. Benning
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 3817–3830,
V. Krumins, M. Gehlen, S. Arndt, P. Van Cappellen, and P. Regnier
Biogeosciences, 10, 371–398,
Related subject area
Biogeochemistry: SoilsSimilar importance of edaphic and climatic factors for controlling soil organic carbon stocks of the worldRepresenting methane emissions from wet tropical forest soils using microbial functional groups constrained by soil diffusivityLong-term bare-fallow soil fractions reveal thermo-chemical properties controlling soil organic carbon dynamicsGeochemical zones and environmental gradients for soils from the central Transantarctic Mountains, AntarcticaAge distribution, extractability, and stability of mineral-bound organic carbon in central European soilsDenitrification in soil as a function of oxygen availability at the microscaleKey drivers of pyrogenic carbon redistribution during a simulated rainfall eventSubsurface flow and phosphorus dynamics in beech forest hillslopes during sprinkling experiments: how fast is phosphorus replenished?Mercury mobility, colloid formation and methylation in a polluted fluvisol as affected by manure application and 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Zhongkui Luo, Raphael A. Viscarra-Rossel, and Tian Qian
Biogeosciences, 18, 2063–2073,Short summary
Using the data from 141 584 whole-soil profiles across the globe, we disentangled the relative importance of biotic, climatic and edaphic variables in controlling global SOC stocks. The results suggested that soil properties and climate contributed similarly to the explained global variance of SOC in four sequential soil layers down to 2 m. However, the most important individual controls are consistently soil-related, challenging current climate-driven framework of SOC dynamics.
Debjani Sihi, Xiaofeng Xu, Mónica Salazar Ortiz, Christine S. O'Connell, Whendee L. Silver, Carla López-Lloreda, Julia M. Brenner, Ryan K. Quinn, Jana R. Phillips, Brent D. Newman, and Melanie A. Mayes
Biogeosciences, 18, 1769–1786,Short summary
Humid tropical soils are important sources and sinks of methane. We used model simulation to understand how different kinds of microbes and observed soil moisture and oxygen dynamics contribute to production and consumption of methane along a wet tropical hillslope during normal and drought conditions. Drought alters the diffusion of oxygen and microbial substrates into and out of soil microsites, resulting in enhanced methane release from the entire hillslope during drought recovery.
Mathieu Chassé, Suzanne Lutfalla, Lauric Cécillon, François Baudin, Samuel Abiven, Claire Chenu, and Pierre Barré
Biogeosciences, 18, 1703–1718,Short summary
Evolution of organic carbon content in soils could be a major driver of atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations over the next century. Understanding factors controlling carbon persistence in soil is a challenge. Our study of unique long-term bare-fallow samples, depleted in labile organic carbon, helps improve the separation, evaluation and characterization of carbon pools with distinct residence time in soils and gives insight into the mechanisms explaining soil organic carbon persistence.
Melisa A. Diaz, Christopher B. Gardner, Susan A. Welch, W. Andrew Jackson, Byron J. Adams, Diana H. Wall, Ian D. Hogg, Noah Fierer, and W. Berry Lyons
Biogeosciences, 18, 1629–1644,Short summary
Water-soluble salt and nutrient concentrations of soils collected along the Shackleton Glacier, Antarctica, show distinct geochemical gradients related to latitude, longitude, elevation, soil moisture, and distance from coast and glacier. Machine learning algorithms were used to estimate geochemical gradients for the region given the relationship with geography. Geography and surface exposure age drive salt and nutrient abundances, influencing invertebrate habitat suitability and biogeography.
Marion Schrumpf, Klaus Kaiser, Allegra Mayer, Günter Hempel, and Susan Trumbore
Biogeosciences, 18, 1241–1257,Short summary
A large amount of organic carbon (OC) in soil is protected against decay by bonding to minerals. We studied the release of mineral-bonded OC by NaF–NaOH extraction and H2O2 oxidation. Unexpectedly, extraction and oxidation removed mineral-bonded OC at roughly constant portions and of similar age distributions, irrespective of mineral composition, land use, and soil depth. The results suggest uniform modes of interactions between OC and minerals across soils in quasi-steady state with inputs.
Lena Rohe, Bernd Apelt, Hans-Jörg Vogel, Reinhard Well, Gi-Mick Wu, and Steffen Schlüter
Biogeosciences, 18, 1185–1201,Short summary
Total denitrification, i.e. N2O and (N2O + N2) fluxes, of repacked soil cores were analysed for different combinations of soils and water contents. Prediction accuracy of (N2O + N2) fluxes was highest with combined proxies for oxygen demand (CO2 flux) and oxygen supply (anaerobic soil volume fraction). Knowledge of denitrification completeness (product ratio) improved N2O predictions. Substitutions with cheaper proxies (soil organic matter, empirical diffusivity) reduced prediction accuracy.
Severin-Luca Bellè, Asmeret Asefaw Berhe, Frank Hagedorn, Cristina Santin, Marcus Schiedung, Ilja van Meerveld, and Samuel Abiven
Biogeosciences, 18, 1105–1126,Short summary
Controls of pyrogenic carbon (PyC) redistribution under rainfall are largely unknown. However, PyC mobility can be substantial after initial rain in post-fire landscapes. We conducted a controlled simulation experiment on plots where PyC was applied on the soil surface. We identified redistribution of PyC by runoff and splash and vertical movement in the soil depending on soil texture and PyC characteristics (material and size). PyC also induced changes in exports of native soil organic carbon.
Michael Rinderer, Jaane Krüger, Friederike Lang, Heike Puhlmann, and Markus Weiler
Biogeosciences, 18, 1009–1027,Short summary
We quantified the lateral and vertical subsurface flow (SSF) and P concentrations of three beech forest plots with contrasting soil properties during sprinkling experiments. Vertical SSF was 2 orders of magnitude larger than lateral SSF, and both consisted mainly of pre-event water. P concentrations in SSF were high during the first 1 to 2 h (nutrient flushing) but nearly constant thereafter. This suggests that P in the soil solution was replenished fast by mineral or organic sources.
Lorenz Gfeller, Andrea Weber, Isabelle Worms, Vera I. Slaveykova, and Adrien Mestrot
Preprint under review for BG
Kirsty C. Paterson, Joanna M. Cloy, Robert M. Rees, Elizabeth M. Baggs, Hugh Martineau, Dario Fornara, Andrew J. Macdonald, and Sarah Buckingham
Biogeosciences, 18, 605–620,Short summary
Soil organic carbon sequestration across agroecosystems worldwide can contribute to mitigating the effects of climate change by reducing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. The maximum carbon sequestration potential is frequently estimated using the linear regression equation developed by Hassink (1997). This work examines the suitability of this equation for use in grasslands across the United Kingdom. The results highlight the need to ensure the fit of equations to the soils being studied.
Hannah Gies, Frank Hagedorn, Maarten Lupker, Daniel Montluçon, Negar Haghipour, Tessa Sophia van der Voort, and Timothy Ian Eglinton
Biogeosciences, 18, 189–205,Short summary
Understanding controls on the persistence of organic matter in soils is essential to constrain its role in the carbon cycle. Emerging concepts suggest that the soil carbon pool is predominantly comprised of stabilized microbial residues. To test this hypothesis we isolated microbial membrane lipids from two Swiss soil profiles and measured their radiocarbon age. We find that the ages of these compounds are in the range of millenia and thus provide evidence for stabilized microbial mass in soils.
Frederick Büks, Gilles Kayser, Antonia Zieger, Friederike Lang, and Martin Kaupenjohann
Biogeosciences, 18, 159–167,Short summary
Ultrasonication/density fractionation is a common method used to extract particulate organic matter (POM) and, recently, microplastic (MP) from soil samples. In this study, ultrasonic treatment with mechanical stress increasing from 0 to 500 J mL−1 caused comminution and a reduced recovery rate of soil-derived POMs but no such effects with MP particles. In consequence, the extraction of MP from soils is not affected by particle size and recovery rate artifacts.
Yao Zhang, Jocelyn M. Lavallee, Andy D. Robertson, Rebecca Even, Stephen M. Ogle, Keith Paustian, and M. Francesca Cotrufo
Revised manuscript accepted for BGShort summary
Soil organic matter (SOM) is essential for the health of soils and the accumulation of SOM helps removal of CO2 from the atmosphere. Here we present the result of the continued development of a mathematical model that simulates SOM and its measurable fractions. In this study, we simulated serval grassland sites in the U.S. and the model generally captured the carbon and nitrogen amounts in SOM and their distribution between the measurable fractions throughout the entire soil profile.
Hang Wen, Pamela L. Sullivan, Gwendolyn L. Macpherson, Sharon A. Billings, and Li Li
Biogeosciences, 18, 55–75,Short summary
Carbonate weathering is essential in regulating carbon cycle at the century timescale. Plant roots accelerate weathering by elevating soil CO2 via respiration. It however remains poorly understood how and how much rooting characteristics modify flow paths and weathering. This work indicates that deepening roots in woodlands can enhance carbonate weathering by promoting recharge and CO2–carbonate contact in the deep, carbonate-abundant subsurface.
Marcus Schiedung, Severin-Luca Bellè, Gabriel Sigmund, Karsten Kalbitz, and Samuel Abiven
Biogeosciences, 17, 6457–6474,Short summary
The mobility of pyrogenic organic matter (PyOM) in soils is largely unknow, while it is a major and persistent component of the soil organic matter. With a soil column experiment, we identified that only a small proportion of PyOM can migrate through the soil, but its export is continuous. Aging and associated oxidation increase its mobility but also its retention in soils. Further, PyOM can alter the vertical mobility of native soil organic carbon during its downward migration.
Patrick Wordell-Dietrich, Anja Wotte, Janet Rethemeyer, Jörg Bachmann, Mirjam Helfrich, Kristina Kirfel, Christoph Leuschner, and Axel Don
Biogeosciences, 17, 6341–6356,Short summary
The release of CO2 from soils, known as soil respiration, plays a major role in the global carbon cycle. However, the contributions of different soil depths or the sources of soil CO2 have hardly been studied. We quantified the CO2 production for different soil layers (up to 1.5 m) in three soil profiles for 2 years. We found that 90 % of CO2 production occurs in the first 30 cm of the soil profile, and that the CO2 originated from young carbon sources, as revealed by radiocarbon measurements.
Antonio Rodríguez, Rosa Maria Canals, Josefina Plaixats, Elena Albanell, Haifa Debouk, Jordi Garcia-Pausas, Leticia San Emeterio, Àngela Ribas, Juan José Jimenez, and M.-Teresa Sebastià
Biogeosciences, 17, 6033–6050,Short summary
The novelty of our work is that it presents a series of potential interactions between drivers of soil organic carbon at broad scales in temperate mountain grasslands. The most relevant contribution of our work is that it illustrates the importance of grazing management for soil carbon stocks, indicating that interactions between grazing species and soil nitrogen and herbage quality may be promising paths in order to design further management policies for palliating climate change.
Curt A. McConnell, Jason P. Kaye, and Armen R. Kemanian
Biogeosciences, 17, 5309–5333,Short summary
Soil phosphorus (P) management is a critical challenge for agriculture worldwide; yet, simulation models of soil P processes lag those of other essential nutrients. In this review, we identify hindrances to measuring and modeling soil P pools and fluxes. We highlight the need to clarify biological and mineral interactions by defining P pools explicitly and using evolving techniques, such as tracing P in phosphates using oxygen isotopes.
Greta Formaglio, Edzo Veldkamp, Xiaohong Duan, Aiyen Tjoa, and Marife D. Corre
Biogeosciences, 17, 5243–5262,Short summary
The intensive management of large-scale oil palm plantations may result in high nutrient leaching losses which reduce soil fertility and potentially pollute water bodies. The reduction in management intensity with lower fertilization rates and with mechanical weeding instead of the use of herbicide results in lower nutrient leaching losses while maintaining high yield. Lower leaching results from lower nutrient inputs from fertilizer and from higher retention by enhanced cover vegetation.
Isabelle Basile-Doelsch, Jérôme Balesdent, and Sylvain Pellerin
Biogeosciences, 17, 5223–5242,Short summary
The 4 per 1000 initiative aims to restore carbon storage in soils to both mitigate climate change and contribute to food security. The French National Institute for Agricultural Research conducted a study to determine the carbon storage potential in French soils and associated costs. This paper is a part of that study. It reviews recent advances concerning the mechanisms that controls C stabilization in soils. Synthetic figures integrating new concepts should be of pedagogical interest.
Jolanda E. Reusser, René Verel, Daniel Zindel, Emmanuel Frossard, and Timothy I. McLaren
Biogeosciences, 17, 5079–5095,Short summary
Inositol phosphates (IPs) are a major pool of organic P in soil. However, information on their diversity and abundance in soil is limited. We isolated IPs from soil and characterised them using solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. For the first time, we provide direct spectroscopic evidence for the existence of a multitude of lower-order IPs in soil extracts previously not detected with NMR. Our findings will help provide new insight into the cycling of IPs in ecosystems.
Katharina Hildegard Elisabeth Meurer, Claire Chenu, Elsa Coucheney, Anke Marianne Herrmann, Thomas Keller, Thomas Kätterer, David Nimblad Svensson, and Nicholas Jarvis
Biogeosciences, 17, 5025–5042,Short summary
We present a simple model that describes, for the first time, the dynamic two-way interactions between soil organic matter and soil physical properties (porosity, pore size distribution, bulk density and layer thickness). The model was able to accurately reproduce the changes in soil organic carbon, soil bulk density and surface elevation observed during 63 years in a field trial, as well as soil water retention curves measured at the end of the experimental period.
Marion Nyberg and Mark J. Hovenden
Biogeosciences, 17, 4405–4420,Short summary
Experimental warming increased soil respiration (RS) by more than 25 % in a Tasmanian C-rich soil, but there was no impact on microbial respiration in laboratory experiments. Plant community composition had no effect on RS, suggesting the response is likely due to enhanced belowground plant respiration and C supply through rhizodeposition and root exudates. Results imply we need studies of both C inputs and losses to model net ecosystem C exchange of these crucial, C-dense systems effectively.
Akane O. Abbasi, Alejandro Salazar, Youmi Oh, Sabine Reinsch, Maria del Rosario Uribe, Jianghanyang Li, Irfan Rashid, and Jeffrey S. Dukes
Biogeosciences, 17, 3859–3873,Short summary
In this study, we provide a holistic view of soil responses to precipitation changes. A total of 16 meta-analyses focusing on the effects of precipitation changes on 42 soil response variables were compared. A strong agreement was found that the belowground carbon and nitrogen cycling accelerate under increased precipitation and slow under decreased precipitation, while bacterial and fungal communities are relatively resistant to decreased precipitation. Knowledge gaps were also identified.
Isabel Prater, Sebastian Zubrzycki, Franz Buegger, Lena C. Zoor-Füllgraff, Gerrit Angst, Michael Dannenmann, and Carsten W. Mueller
Biogeosciences, 17, 3367–3383,Short summary
Large amounts of soil organic matter stored in permafrost-affected soils from Arctic Russia are present as undecomposed plant residues. This large fibrous organic matter might be highly vulnerable to microbial decay, while small mineral-associated organic matter can most probably attenuate carbon mineralization in a warmer future. Labile soil fractions also store large amounts of nitrogen, which might be lost during permafrost collapse while fostering the decomposition of soil organic matter.
Patrick Liebmann, Patrick Wordell-Dietrich, Karsten Kalbitz, Robert Mikutta, Fabian Kalks, Axel Don, Susanne K. Woche, Leena R. Dsilva, and Georg Guggenberger
Biogeosciences, 17, 3099–3113,Short summary
We studied the contribution of litter-derived carbon (C) in the formation of subsoil organic matter (OM). Soil core sampling, 13C field labeling, density fractionation, and water extractions were used to track its contribution to different functional OM fractions down to the deep subsoil. We show that while migrating down the soil profile, OM undergoes a sequence of repeated sorption, microbial processing, and desorption. However, the contribution of litter-derived C to subsoil OM is small.
Artem G. Lim, Martin Jiskra, Jeroen E. Sonke, Sergey V. Loiko, Natalia Kosykh, and Oleg S. Pokrovsky
Biogeosciences, 17, 3083–3097,Short summary
To better understand the mercury (Hg) content in northern soils, we measured Hg concentration in peat cores across a 1700 km permafrost gradient in Siberia. We demonstrated a northward increase in Hg concentration in peat and Hg pools in frozen peatlands. We revised the 0–30 cm northern soil Hg pool to be 72 Gg, which is 7 % of the global soil Hg pool of 1086 Gg. The results are important for understanding Hg exchange between soil, water, and the atmosphere under climate change in the Arctic.
Caitlin Hicks Pries, Alon Angert, Cristina Castanha, Boaz Hilman, and Margaret S. Torn
Biogeosciences, 17, 3045–3055,Short summary
The apparent respiration quotient (ARQ) changes according to which substrates microbes consume, allowing sources of soil respiration to be traced. In a forest soil warming experiment, ARQ had a strong seasonal pattern that reflected a shift from respiration being fueled by sugars and organic acids derived from roots during the growing season to respiration being fueled by dead microbes during winter. ARQ values also changed with experimental warming.
Marijn Van de Broek, Shiva Ghiasi, Charlotte Decock, Andreas Hund, Samuel Abiven, Cordula Friedli, Roland A. Werner, and Johan Six
Biogeosciences, 17, 2971–2986,Short summary
Four wheat cultivars were labeled with 13CO2 to quantify the effect of rooting depth and root biomass on the belowground transfer of organic carbon. We found no clear relation between the time since cultivar development and the amount of carbon inputs to the soil. Therefore, the hypothesis that wheat cultivars with a larger root biomass and deeper roots promote carbon stabilization was rejected. The amount of root biomass that will be stabilized in the soil on the long term is, however, unknown.
Carolyn J. Ewers Lewis, Mary A. Young, Daniel Ierodiaconou, Jeffrey A. Baldock, Bruce Hawke, Jonathan Sanderman, Paul E. Carnell, and Peter I. Macreadie
Biogeosciences, 17, 2041–2059,Short summary
Blue carbonecosystems – tidal marsh, mangrove, and seagrass – serve as important organic carbon sinks, mitigating impacts of climate change. We utilized a robust regional carbon stock dataset to identify ecological, geomorphological, and anthropogenic drivers of carbon stock variability and create high-spatial-resolution predictive carbon stock maps. This work facilitates strategic conservation and restoration of coastal blue carbon ecosystems to contribute to climate change mitigation.
Yuqing Liu, Wenhong Ma, Dan Kou, Xiaxia Niu, Tian Wang, Yongliang Chen, Dima Chen, Xiaoqin Zhu, Mengying Zhao, Baihui Hao, Jinbo Zhang, Yuanhe Yang, and Huifeng Hu
Biogeosciences, 17, 2009–2019,Short summary
The microbial C : N ratio increased with aridity, while the microbial N : P ratio decreased with aridity, which implied that drought-stimulated microbes tend to be more N conservative. Among all examined ecological factors, substrate supply and microbial structure together controlled the microbial stoichiometry. Overall, these results illustrated N and P limitation in microbial biomass at deeper soil depths along the aridity gradient and limited responses to ecological factors in the subsoil.
Laura Matkala, Maija Salemaa, and Jaana Bäck
Biogeosciences, 17, 1535–1556,Short summary
We studied how species number and abundance of the understorey vegetation correlates with nutrient contents of soil and tree leaves at a northern boreal forest site. The phosphorus (P) content of the humus layer showed higher correlation with vegetation than the nitrogen (N) content. Usually N is considered more important in boreal forests. The plots with high P content in humus had birch as the dominant tree species, implying that birch leaf litter is an important source of P to the plants.
John Marty Kranabetter, Ariana Sholinder, and Louise de Montigny
Biogeosciences, 17, 1247–1260,Short summary
Temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest often have productive soils with high levels of organic matter. We describe the nitrogen and phosphorus attributes of this soil organic matter in relation to the growth of four conifer species. Sitka spruce thrived on high-nitrogen soils, more so than the other conifer species, but productivity overall is likely constrained by phosphorus deficiencies. Study results will guide wood production, carbon sequestration and conservation priorities.
Jianxiao Zhu, Chuankuan Wang, Zhang Zhou, Guoyi Zhou, Xueyang Hu, Lai Jiang, Yide Li, Guohua Liu, Chengjun Ji, Shuqing Zhao, Peng Li, Jiangling Zhu, Zhiyao Tang, Chengyang Zheng, Richard A. Birdsey, Yude Pan, and Jingyun Fang
Biogeosciences, 17, 715–726,Short summary
Soil is the largest carbon pool in forests. Whether forest soils function as a sink or source of atmospheric carbon remains controversial. Here, we investigated the 20-year changes in the soil organic carbon pool at eight permanent forest plots in China. Our results revealed that the soils sequestered 3.6–16.3 % of the annual net primary production across the investigated sites, demonstrating that these forest soils have functioned as an important C sink during the past 2 decades.
Julian Helfenstein, Chiara Pistocchi, Astrid Oberson, Federica Tamburini, Daniel S. Goll, and Emmanuel Frossard
Biogeosciences, 17, 441–454,Short summary
In this article we provide estimates of mean residence times of phosphorus in inorganic soil phosphorus pools. These values improve our understanding of the dynamics of phosphorus cycling and can be used to improve global land surface models.
Peter Kuhry, Jiří Bárta, Daan Blok, Bo Elberling, Samuel Faucherre, Gustaf Hugelius, Christian J. Jørgensen, Andreas Richter, Hana Šantrůčková, and Niels Weiss
Biogeosciences, 17, 361–379,
Sophie Casetou-Gustafson, Harald Grip, Stephen Hillier, Sune Linder, Bengt A. Olsson, Magnus Simonsson, and Johan Stendahl
Biogeosciences, 17, 281–304,Short summary
Reliable methods are required for estimating mineral supply rates to forest growth from weathering. We applied the depletion method, the PROFILE model and the base cation budget method to two forest sites in Sweden. The highest weathering rate was obtained from the budget method and the lowest from the depletion method. The high rate by the budget method suggests that there were additional sources for tree uptake not captured by measurements.
Yang Lin, Avner Gross, Christine S. O'Connell, and Whendee L. Silver
Biogeosciences, 17, 89–101,Short summary
Phosphorus (P) is an important soil nutrient that often limits plant growth and microbial activity in humid tropical forests. These ecosystems receive a large amount of rainfall that helps create frequent anoxic events in soils. Our results show that anoxic conditions reduced the strength of soil minerals to bind P even though a large amount of P was still bound to minerals. Our study suggests that anoxic events might serve as hot moments for plants and microbes to acquire P.
Yakov Kuzyakov and Kazem Zamanian
Biogeosciences, 16, 4783–4803,Short summary
Agropedogenesis, i.e. soil development under agricultural use, is the anthropogenic modification of soil and environmental factors for optimization of crop production. Maximization of only this function, crop production, leads to declines in all other soil functions and consequently promotes uniformity in soil properties around the globe. Here we developed a new scientific background for the theory of agropedogenesis and the identification of soil degradation stages.
Cecilia Akselsson, Salim Belyazid, Johan Stendahl, Roger Finlay, Bengt A. Olsson, Martin Erlandsson Lampa, Håkan Wallander, Jon Petter Gustafsson, and Kevin Bishop
Biogeosciences, 16, 4429–4450,Short summary
The release of elements from soil through weathering is an important process, controlling nutrient availability for plants and recovery from acidification. However, direct measurements cannot be done, and present estimates are burdened with high uncertainties. In this paper we use different approaches to quantify weathering rates in different scales in Sweden and discuss the pros and cons. The study contributes to more robust assessments of sustainable harvesting of forest biomass.
Heyong Liu, Ruzhen Wang, Hongyi Wang, Yanzhuo Cao, Feike A. Dijkstra, Zhan Shi, Jiangping Cai, Zhengwen Wang, Hongtao Zou, and Yong Jiang
Biogeosciences, 16, 4293–4306,
Yanxia Nie, Xiaoge Han, Jie Chen, Mengcen Wang, and Weijun Shen
Biogeosciences, 16, 4277–4291,Short summary
The N–transformation rates and N–related functional gene abundance were surveyed in a tropical forest soil with experimental N additions. The C : N ratio was the determinant factor for N transformations in the dry season while the microbial biomass was the one in the wet season. This study also found that high N addition imposed significant positive effects on the functional gene abundance of AOA amoA and nirK but negative effects on that of AOB amoA and nosZ.
Axel Don, Christina Hagen, Erik Grüneberg, and Cora Vos
Biogeosciences, 16, 4145–4155,Short summary
Forest soils have a steep carbon gradient from the forest floor to the mineral soil, indicating that carbon is prevented from entry into the soil. Wild boar are effective in mixing the soil when searching for food. In a 6–year field study, we found no significant changes in soil organic carbon stocks in the wild boar treatment plots. However, around 50 % of forest floor carbon was transferred with mixing into mineral soil carbon and increased the stabilised fraction of soil organic carbon.
Sarah W. Keenan, Sean M. Schaeffer, and Jennifer M. DeBruyn
Biogeosciences, 16, 3929–3939,Short summary
Decaying animals perturb soil biogeochemical cycles. Stable δ15N composition, which reflects the sum of all biogeochemical processes, increases during decay and persists for years. Enrichment following beaver decay persisted after at least 1 year, and was evident up to 10 cm depth and 60 cm from the decaying animals, beyond where soils were visibly impacted by decomposition. Nutrients sourced from decaying animals represent an integral and long–lived component of nitrogen cycling in soils.
Aditi Sengupta, Julia Indivero, Cailene Gunn, Malak M. Tfaily, Rosalie K. Chu, Jason Toyoda, Vanessa L. Bailey, Nicholas D. Ward, and James C. Stegen
Biogeosciences, 16, 3911–3928,Short summary
Coastal terrestrial–aquatic interfaces represent dynamic yet poorly understood zones of biogeochemical cycles. We evaluated associations between the soil salinity gradient, molecular-level soil-C chemistry, and microbial community assembly processes in a coastal watershed on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington, USA. Results revealed salinity-driven gradients in molecular-level C chemistry, with little evidence of an association between C chemistry and microbial community assembly processes.
Steffen Schlüter, Jan Zawallich, Hans-Jörg Vogel, and Peter Dörsch
Biogeosciences, 16, 3665–3678,Short summary
A combination of gas chromatography and X-ray CT reveals the microscale processes that govern soil respiration. Aerobic and anaerobic respiration in microbial hotspots depends not only on the quality and quantity of soil organic matter, but also on the spatial distribution of hotspots. Denitrification kinetics are mainly governed by hotspot architecture due to local competition for oxygen during growth. Cumulative behavior is mainly governed by water saturation due to the overall supply with O2.
Nicholas P. Rosenstock, Patrick A. W. van Hees, Petra M. A. Fransson, Roger D. Finlay, and Anna Rosling
Biogeosciences, 16, 3637–3649,Short summary
We examined the effects of elevated CO2, pine seedlings, and ectomycorrhizal fungi on mineral weathering. Seedlings significantly increased mineral weathering, while elevated CO2 increased plant growth and organic acid concentrations but had no effect on weathering. Ectomycorrhial fungi showed some tendency to increase weathering. We conclude that nutrient uptake, which reduces transport limitation to weathering, is the primary mechanism by which plants enhanced weathering in this system.
Zhenjiao Cao, Yufu Jia, Yue Cai, Xin Wang, Huifeng Hu, Jinbo Zhang, Juan Jia, and Xiaojuan Feng
Biogeosciences, 16, 3605–3619,Short summary
Using pathway analysis, we demonstrate that past aridity's effect is mediated by differential mechanisms for substrates of varied complexity. While microbial biomass plays a more important role in the decomposition of fresh litter, enzyme-catalyzed extracellular reactions predominantly govern the mineralization of SOC. Our findings have significant implications for assessing and modeling decomposition in different aridity regimes.
Zhiwei Xu, Guirui Yu, Qiufeng Wang, Xinyu Zhang, Ruili Wang, Ning Zhao, Nianpeng He, and Ziping Liu
Biogeosciences, 16, 3333–3349,Short summary
Plant functional traits have increasingly been studied as determinants of ecosystem properties. While the relationships between biological community structures and ecological functions remain poorly understood at the large scale, we found that there was considerable variation in the profiles of different substrate uses along the NSTEC. The soil silt content and plant functional traits together shaped the biogeographical pattern of the soil microbial substrate use.
Tessa Sophia van der Voort, Utsav Mannu, Frank Hagedorn, Cameron McIntyre, Lorenz Walthert, Patrick Schleppi, Negar Haghipour, and Timothy Ian Eglinton
Biogeosciences, 16, 3233–3246,Short summary
The carbon stored in soils is the largest reservoir of organic carbon on land. In the context of greenhouse gas emissions and a changing climate, it is very important to understand how stable the carbon in the soil is and why. The deeper parts of the soil have often been overlooked even though they store a lot of carbon. In this paper, we discovered that although deep soil carbon is expected to be old and stable, there can be a significant young component that cycles much faster.
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Soil development following glacier retreat was characterized using a novel integrated field, laboratory and modelling approach in Svalbard. We found community shifts in bacteria, which were responsible for driving cycles in carbon and nutrients. Allochthonous inputs were also important in sustaining bacterial production. This study shows how an integrated model–data approach can improve understanding and obtain a more holistic picture of soil development in an increasingly ice-free future world.
Soil development following glacier retreat was characterized using a novel integrated field,...