HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Subtle Biotic Changes Have Big Environmental Impact

By changing the composition of fish populations in a lake, scientists have found a switch by which the flow of carbon between lakes and the atmosphere can be turned on, off, or reversed.

The finding, reported by researchers from UW-Madison in this week's (July 11) edition of the journal Science, is the first to show that only slight rearrangement of an intact ecosystem's food web can directly influence the atmosphere.

The discovery is important because it demonstrates that single, seemingly subtle changes in ecosystems can have far-reaching consequences, and are capable of disrupting the fundamental biogeochemical processes of the Earth.

"Linkages in ecosystems are both stronger and stranger than we imagined," said Stephen R. Carpenter, a UW-Madison limnologist who, with fellow limnologists Daniel E. Schindler and James F. Kitchell, authored the report. "Biological processes have powerful feedbacks to processes that are normally thought to be purely physical or chemical in nature."

While lakes occupy a very small area of the planet's surface, the discovery that simple biotic change is capable of altering the exchange of carbon between the atmosphere and the Earth's surface raises questions of global significance, said Carpenter.

"To what extent could fertilization of the oceans and alteration of oceanic food webs affect global carbon cycles? In fact, runoff from land is now enriching coastal oceans to unprecedented levels, and industrial fishing is causing massive changes in marine food webs. So the global experiment is underway," said Carpenter.

Carbon, an essential nutrient in lakes, typically flows from the land in the form of dead leaves and other organic matter that accumulates and decays underwater. Usually, these processes lead to a surplus of carbon dioxide in lakes. Excess carbon in a lake is released as a gas, carbon dioxide, to the atmosphere.

Whe
'"/>

Contact: Stephen Carpenter
srclake@macc.wisc.edu
608-262-8690
University of Wisconsin-Madison
10-Jun-1997


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Subtle Changes In Brain Receptor Gene May Have Significant Consequences For Addiction
2. Changes to insect-seeking calls of horseshoe bats may drive new species formation
3. Changes in shape of single protein plays key role in the spread of cancer cells
4. Changes in arctic ice affect life around the globe
5. Changes in jet stream, storm tracks, linked to prairie drought patterns, study finds
6. Changes in prevalence of mutations associated with HIV treatment failure
7. Changes in rainfall patterns spur plant growth, carbon absorption across U.S.
8. Changes in agricultural practices help clean up Lake Erie
9. Changes in Lake Erie fish population suggest lakes recovery
10. Changes in Australian ecosystems tied to arrival of exotic animals
11. Changes in North American land use have had major impact on global environment

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/14/2017)... (NYSE: IBM ) is introducing several innovative partner startups ... collaboration between startups and global businesses, taking place in ... nine startups will showcase the solutions they have built with ... France is one of the ... percent increase in the number of startups created between 2012 ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... 16, 2017   Bridge Patient Portal , ... MD EMR Systems , an electronic medical ... GE, have established a partnership to build an ... the GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution ... These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... New York , April 19, 2017 ... competitive, as its vendor landscape is marked by the ... the market is however held by five major players ... Safran. Together these companies accounted for nearly 61% of ... of the leading companies in the global military biometrics ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... platform specifically designed for life science researchers to analyze and interpret datasets, ... Franklin, who made a major contribution to the discovery of the double-helix ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... ... Personal eye wash is a basic first aid supply for any work environment, but most ... you rinse first if a dangerous substance enters both eyes? It’s one less decision, and ... unique dual eye piece. , “Whether its dirt and debris, or an acid or alkali, ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  VMS BioMarketing, a leading ... a nationwide oncology Clinical Nurse Educator (CNE) network, which will ... need for communication among health care professionals to enhance the ... nurses, office staff, and other health care professionals to help ... breast cancer. ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... implantation and pregnancy rates in frozen and fresh in vitro fertilization (IVF) ... and maternal age to IVF success. , After comparing the results from the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: