Event Title

The Effects of Benthic Algae Communities on Nutrient Uptake in a Mountain Stream

Presenter Information

Glen de Guzman
Michelle Baker

Location

Space Dynamics Laboratory

Event Website

http://water.usu.edu/

Start Date

3-25-2004 10:05 AM

End Date

3-25-2004 10:10 AM

Description

Understanding the effects of benthic algae community structure on nutrient uptake represents a significant knowledge gap in stream ecology. In this experiment, we added a stable isotope form of nitrogen (N-15) to trace nitrogen through the stream food web and measure nutrient uptake by algae. To measure uptake by different community types, we transplanted rocks dominated by green (filamentous), yellow (diatoms), and brown (other) algae types from a lake outflow to inflow stream in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho during the summer of 2003. We collected samples once before and twice during the N-15 experiment. We analyzed the samples for N15, chlorophyll, and total nitrogen. The data showed that the community type dominated by green algae took up the N-15 tracer faster (.015 g-N/cm2/d) and at a higher quantity (ca. 4x) than the other community types after 7 days. Further, the uptake rate of the green algae community increased to .135 g-N/cm2/d after 14 days. This research is among the first to relate algal community structure to nutrient uptake, cycling and retention in a stream environment. This research was supported by the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program (Grant# NSF DEB-0132983).

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Mar 25th, 10:05 AM Mar 25th, 10:10 AM

The Effects of Benthic Algae Communities on Nutrient Uptake in a Mountain Stream

Space Dynamics Laboratory

Understanding the effects of benthic algae community structure on nutrient uptake represents a significant knowledge gap in stream ecology. In this experiment, we added a stable isotope form of nitrogen (N-15) to trace nitrogen through the stream food web and measure nutrient uptake by algae. To measure uptake by different community types, we transplanted rocks dominated by green (filamentous), yellow (diatoms), and brown (other) algae types from a lake outflow to inflow stream in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho during the summer of 2003. We collected samples once before and twice during the N-15 experiment. We analyzed the samples for N15, chlorophyll, and total nitrogen. The data showed that the community type dominated by green algae took up the N-15 tracer faster (.015 g-N/cm2/d) and at a higher quantity (ca. 4x) than the other community types after 7 days. Further, the uptake rate of the green algae community increased to .135 g-N/cm2/d after 14 days. This research is among the first to relate algal community structure to nutrient uptake, cycling and retention in a stream environment. This research was supported by the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program (Grant# NSF DEB-0132983).

https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/runoff/2004/AllPosters/24