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Alteration of leaf decomposition in copper-contaminated freshwater mesocosms

Roussel, Hélène and Chauvet, Eric and Bonzom, Jean-Marc Alteration of leaf decomposition in copper-contaminated freshwater mesocosms. (2008) Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 27 (3). 637-644. ISSN 0730-7268

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1897/07-168.1


The influence of copper on leaf litter decomposition was examined in experimental streams. Controls and three levels of contamination (5, 25, and 75 microg/L) were tested in triplicate in 20-m-long mesocosms. Equal quantities of alder, maple, and oak leaves were enclosed in mesh bags and placed in the upper and lower mesocosm sections that exhibited different habitat characteristics (shallow with pebble substrate or deep with fine substrate and macrophytes, respectively). Decomposition rate in the upper section of the 75 micro.g/L mesocosms was significantly reduced to 28% of control values. No significant reductions in the decomposition rate were seen in the lower section. No differences in the leaf-associated mycelial biomass and sporulation rates were observed between treatments, but they were consistently higher in the upper sections. The aquatic hyphomycete community was not affected by the contamination. The abundances of total leaf-associated macroinvertebrates and the dominant shredder (Gammarus pulex) were considerably reduced in the upper sections at 75 microg/L. Therefore, the reduced leaf decomposition probably resulted from a reduction in the abundance of macroinvertebrate detritivores. In addition, local variations in physical and biological characteristics of the habitat along the mesocosms significantly influenced the effects of copper on leaf-associated decomposers.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:Thanks to Wiley editor. The definitive version is available at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com The original PDF of the article can be found at Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry website : http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/wol1/doi/10.1897/07-168.1/abstract
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS (FRANCE)
French research institutions > Institut National de l'Environnement Industriel et des Risques - INERIS (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
French research institutions > Institut de Radioprotection et de Sûreté Nucléaire - IRSN (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier - UT3 (FRANCE)
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Deposited On:22 Jun 2016 08:50

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