Microbial availability and size fractionation of dissolved organic carbon after drought in an intermittent stream: Biogeochemical link across the stream-riparian interface

  • Romaní A
  • Vázquez E
  • Butturini A
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The evolution of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) molecular-weight fractions, DOC biodegradability (BDOC), DOC origin [fluorescence index (FI)], and enzyme activities between the stream waters (main and ephemeral channel) and ground waters (riparian and hillslope) were analyzed during the transition from drought to precipitation in a forested Mediterranean stream. After the first rains, DOC content in stream water reached its maximum value (10-18 mg L(-1)), being explained by the leaching of deciduous leaves accumulated on the stream bed during drought. During this period, the largest molecules (>10 kDa), were the most biodegradable, as indicated by high BDOC values measured during storm events and high enzymatic activities (especially for leucine-aminopeptidase). DOC >100 kDa was strongly immobilized (78%) at the stream-riparian interface, whereas the smallest molecules (

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  • Anna M. Romaní

  • Eusebi Vázquez

  • Andrea Butturini

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