Benthic Exchange of C, N, and P Along the Estuarine Ecotone of Lower Taylor Slough, Florida (USA): Effect of Seasonal Flows and Phosphorus Availability
The southern Everglades and Florida Bay have experienced a nearly 50 % reduction in freshwater flow resulting in increased salinity and landward expansion of mangrove forest. Given the marine end-member is a natural source of P to this region, it is necessary to understand the interactions between inflows and P availability in controlling the exchange of materials across the mangrove ecotone. From 2007 to 2008, we used sediment core incubations to quantify fluxes of dissolved inorganic N and P and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in three ecotone areas (dwarf mangrove, pond, and bay). Experiments were repeated seasonally over 2 years involving P-enriched surface water as a factor. We saw consistent uptake of soluble reactive P (SRP), DOC, and nitrate + nitrite (N+N) by the soils/sediments and release of ammonium (NH4 +) from soils/sediments to the water column across all sites and seasons. P enrichment had no discernible effect on DIN or DOC flux, suggesting that rapid P uptake may have been more geochemically mediated. However, uptake of added P occurred across all sites and seasons, reflecting high uptake capacity in this carbonate system and the potential of the mangrove ecotone to sequester P as it becomes more available.
Liu, K., H. Li, S.E. Davis. 2013. Benthic Exchange of C, N, and P Along the Estuarine Ecotone of Lower Taylor Slough, Florida (USA): Effect of Seasonal Flows and Phosphorus Availability. Wetlands DOI: 10.1007/s13157-013-0431-z