The Fate of 15N-Nitrate Entering a Coupled Terrestrial-Aquatic Ecosystem in the Upper Susquehanna Basin

Christine Goodale, Guin Fredriksen, Steve Thomas (Univ. Nebraska), and Jed Sparks

Spray Team, Spray Day 1: Steve Thomas, Christina Tonitto, Christy Goodale, April Melvin, Kim Sparks, Marissa Weiss

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This project is examining the temporal dynamics of nitrate movement into various forest ecosytsem pools (soil, roots, wood, foliage), its transformations, and the short- and long-term source of nitrate to streamwater. Pulses of 15N were added in April, July, and October 2007, and are being chased through forest ecosystem pools, soil solution, the near-stream zone, and exported in stream water (1, 2, 7, 30, and 90 days post-application). We hypothesize that the roles of plant uptake, soil immobilization, denitrification, and stream uptake will vary by season, with plant uptake and denitrification peaking in April, plants and microbe uptake in July, and soil and stream heterotrophic processes in October.

Support from Cornell Agricultural Ecosystems Program (AEP)

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