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Temperature affects leaf litter decomposition in low-order forest streams: Field and microcosm approaches

AuthorsMartínez, Aingeru; Larrañaga, Aitor; Pérez, Javier; Descals, Enric ; Pozo, Jesús
KeywordsAquatic hyphomycetes
Leaf litter decomposition
Issue Date1-Jan-2014
PublisherBlackwell Publishing
CitationFEMS Micriobiology Ecology 87(1): 257-267 (2014)
AbstractDespite predicted global warming, the temperature effects on headwater stream functioning are poorly understood. We studied these effects on microbial-mediated leaf decomposition and the performance of associated aquatic hyphomycete assemblages. Alder leaves were incubated in three streams differing in winter water temperature. Simultaneously, in laboratory, leaf discs conditioned in these streams were incubated at 5, 10 and 15 °C. We determined mass loss, leaf N and sporulation rate and diversity of aquatic hyphomycete communities. In the field, decomposition rate correlated positively with temperature. Decomposition rate and leaf N presented a positive trend with dissolved nutrients, suggesting that temperature was not the only factor determining the process velocity. Under controlled conditions, it was confirmed that decomposition rate and leaf N were positively correlated with temperature, leaves from the coldest stream responding most clearly. Sporulation rate correlated positively with temperature after 9 days of incubation, but negatively after 18 and 27 days. Temperature rise affected negatively the sporulating fungi richness and diversity only in the material from the coldest stream. Our results suggest that temperature is an important factor determining leaf processing and aquatic hyphomycete assemblages and that composition and activity of fungal communities adapted to cold environments could be more affected by temperature rises. Highlight: Leaf decomposition rate and associated fungal communities respond to temperature shifts in headwater streams. © 2013 Federation of European Microbiological Societies.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1574-6941.12221
Identifiersdoi: 10.1111/1574-6941.12221
issn: 0168-6496
Appears in Collections:(IMEDEA) Artículos
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