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Partitioning of the net CO2 exchange using an automated chamber system reveals plant phenology as key control of production and respiration fluxes in a boreal peatland
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Geological Sciences.
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Number of Authors: 52018 (English)In: Global Change Biology, ISSN 1354-1013, E-ISSN 1365-2486, Vol. 24, no 8, p. 3436-3451Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) drives the carbon (C) sink-source strength of northern peatlands. Since NEE represents a balance between various production and respiration fluxes, accurate predictions of its response to global changes require an in depth understanding of these underlying processes. Currently, however, detailed information of the temporal dynamics as well as the separate biotic and abiotic controls of the NEE component fluxes is lacking in peatland ecosystems. In this study, we address this knowledge gap by using an automated chamber system established across natural and trenching/vegetation removal plots to partition NEE into its production (i.e., gross and net primary production; GPP and NPP) and respiration (i.e., ecosystem, heterotrophic and autotrophic respiration; ER, Rh and Ra) fluxes in a boreal peatland in northern Sweden. Our results showed that daily NEE patterns were driven by GPP while variations in ER were governed by Ra rather than Rh. Moreover, we observed pronounced seasonal shifts in the Ra/Rh and above/belowground NPP ratios throughout the main phenological phases. Generalized linear model analysis revealed that the greenness index derived from digital images (as a proxy for plant phenology) was the strongest control of NEE, GPP and NPP while explaining considerable fractions also in the variations of ER and Ra. In addition, our data exposed greater temperature sensitivity of NPP compared to Rh resulting in enhanced C sequestration with increasing temperature. Overall, our study suggests that the temporal patterns in NEE and its component fluxes are tightly coupled to vegetation dynamics in boreal peatlands and thus challenges previous studies that commonly identify abiotic factors as key drivers. These findings further emphasize the need for integrating detailed information on plant phenology into process-based models to improve predictions of global change impacts on the peatland C cycle.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 24, no 8, p. 3436-3451
Keywords [en]
autotrophic and heterotrophic respiration, biotic and abiotic controls, boreal fen, carbon dioxide, climate change, flux partitioning, gross and net primary production, vegetation phenology
National Category
Biological Sciences Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-159021DOI: 10.1111/gcb.14292ISI: 000437284700015PubMedID: 29710420OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-159021DiVA, id: diva2:1246307
Available from: 2018-09-07 Created: 2018-09-07 Last updated: 2018-09-07Bibliographically approved

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