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An exploratory investigation of the landscape-lake interface: Land cover controls over consumer N and C isotopic composition in Lake Michigan rivermouths

Journal of Great Lakes Research

By:
, , , and
DOI: 10.1016/j.jglr.2012.09.016

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Abstract

Rivermouth ecosystems are areas where tributary waters mix with lentic near-shore waters and provide habitat for many Laurentian Great Lakes fish and wildlife species. Rivermouths are the interface between terrestrial activities that influence rivers and the ecologically important nearshore. Stable isotopes of nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) in consumers were measured from a range of rivermouths systems to address two questions: 1) What is the effect of rivermouth ecosystems and land cover on the isotopic composition of N available to rivermouth consumers? 2) Are rivermouth consumers composed of lake-like or river-like C? For question 1, data suggest that strong relationships between watershed agriculture and consumer N are weakened or eliminated at the rivermouth, in favor of stronger relationships between consumer N and depositional areas that may favor denitrification. For question 2, despite apparently large riverine inputs, consumers only occasionally appear river-like. More often consumers seem to incorporate large amounts of C from either the nearshore or primary production within the rivermouth itself. Rivermouths appear to be active C and N processing environments, thus necessitating their explicit incorporation into models estimating nearshore loading and possibly contributing to their importance to Great Lakes biota.

Geospatial Extents

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
An exploratory investigation of the landscape-lake interface: Land cover controls over consumer N and C isotopic composition in Lake Michigan rivermouths
Series title:
Journal of Great Lakes Research
DOI:
10.1016/j.jglr.2012.09.016
Volume
38
Issue:
4
Year Published:
2012
Language:
English
Publisher:
Elsevier
Contributing office(s):
Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
Description:
10 p.
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Journal of Great Lakes Research
First page:
610
Last page:
619
Country:
United States
Other Geospatial:
Lake Michigan