Articles | Volume 19, issue 13
Biogeosciences, 19, 3247–3261, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-19-3247-2022
Biogeosciences, 19, 3247–3261, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-19-3247-2022
Research article
11 Jul 2022
Research article | 11 Jul 2022

Tracing the source of nitrate in a forested stream showing elevated concentrations during storm events

Weitian Ding et al.

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Cited articles

Aber, J. D., Nadelhoffer, K. J., Steudler, P., and Melillo, J. M.: Nitrogen Saturation in Northern Forest Ecosystems, Bioscience, 39, 378–386, https://doi.org/10.2307/1311067, 1989. 
Aguilera, R. and Melack, J. M.: Concentration-Discharge Responses to Storm Events in Coastal California Watersheds, Water Resour. Res., 54, 407–424, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017WR021578, 2018. 
Alexander, B., Hastings, M. G., Allman, D. J., Dachs, J., Thornton, J. A., and Kunasek, S. A.: Quantifying atmospheric nitrate formation pathways based on a global model of the oxygen isotopic composition (Δ17O) of atmospheric nitrate, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 9, 5043–5056, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-9-5043-2009, 2009. 
Buda, A. R. and DeWalle, D. R.: Dynamics of stream nitrate sources and flow pathways during stormflows on urban, forest and agricultural watersheds in central Pennsylvania, USA, Hydrol. Process., 23, 3292–3305, https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.7423, 2009. 
Burns, D. A. and Kendall, C.: Analysis of δ15N and δ18O to differentiate NO3- sources in runoff at two watersheds in the Catskill Mountains of New York, Water Resour. Res., 38, 91–912, https://doi.org/10.1029/2001wr000292, 2002. 
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Short summary
Excessive leaching of nitrate from forested catchments during storm events degrades water quality and causes eutrophication in downstream areas. Thus, tracing the source of nitrate increase during storm events in forested streams is important for sustainable forest management. Based on the isotopic compositions of stream nitrate, including Δ17O, this study clarifies that the source of stream nitrate increase during storm events was soil nitrate in the riparian zone.
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