Project description:Biofilms are often observed at the solid-water interface. The leaves of many floating macrophytes have characteristics of both terrestrial plants and submerged macrophytes, because, in general, their upper and lower surfaces are exposed to air and water, respectively. However, little is known about the biofilms attached to floating plants. We investigated biofilms attached to the leaves, stems and roots of the floating plants Nymphoides peltata (in summer and winter) and Trapa natans (in summer) in the Gonghu Bay of Lake Taihu. Bacteria and algae were major components of the biofilm on the leaves of the two species of plants. In addition, 454 pyrosequencing analysis of bacterial 16S rRNA genes revealed that Proteobacteria was the dominant phylum, followed by Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria, and Verrucomicrobia. Cluster analysis showed that bacterial communities from the same plant source were clustered into the same group. A total of 677 genera were detected, and 47 genera were shared by all samples. Nitrifiers, including Nitrosomonas, Nitrosococcus and Nitrospira were detected in this study. Seven denitrifying genes (napA, napG, nirS, nirK, cnorB, qnorB and nosZ) were used to detect the abundance of denitrifiers. Genes nirK, nirS cnorB and nosZ were the four most abundant genes in all samples. Our results demonstrated that cultivation of floating plants in water column could enlarge the area for biofilm growth, and biofilms might play an important role in denitrification in eutrophic water.
Project description:Submerged macrophytes play important roles in constructed wetlands and natural water bodies, as these organisms remove nutrients and provide large surfaces for biofilms, which are beneficial for nitrogen removal, particularly from submerged macrophyte-dominated water columns. However, information on the responses of biofilms to submerged macrophytes and nitrogen molecules is limited. In the present study, bacterial community structure and denitrifiers were investigated in biofilms on the leaves of four submerged macrophytes and artificial plants exposed to two nitrate concentrations. The biofilm cells were evenly distributed on artificial plants but appeared in microcolonies on the surfaces of submerged macrophytes. Proteobacteria was the most abundant phylum in all samples, accounting for 27.3-64.8% of the high-quality bacterial reads, followed by Chloroflexi (3.7-25.4%), Firmicutes (3.0-20.1%), Acidobacteria (2.7-15.7%), Actinobacteria (2.2-8.7%), Bacteroidetes (0.5-9.7%), and Verrucomicrobia (2.4-5.2%). Cluster analysis showed that bacterial community structure can be significantly different on macrophytes versus from those on artificial plants. Redundancy analysis showed that electrical conductivity and nitrate concentration were positively correlated with Shannon index and operational taxonomic unit (OTU) richness (log10 transformed) but somewhat negatively correlated with microbial density. The relative abundances of five denitrifying genes were positively correlated with nitrate concentration and electrical conductivity but negatively correlated with dissolved oxygen.
Project description:Water eutrophication creates unfavorable environmental conditions for submerged macrophytes. In these situations, biotic interactions may be particularly important for explaining and predicting the submerged macrophytes occurrence. Here, we evaluate the roles of biotic interactions in predicting spatial occurrence of submerged macrophytes in 1959 and 2009 for Dianshan Lake in eastern China, which became eutrophic since the 1980s. For the four common species occurred in 1959 and 2009, null species distribution models based on abiotic variables and full models based on both abiotic and biotic variables were developed using generalized linear model (GLM) and boosted regression trees (BRT) to determine whether the biotic variables improved the model performance. Hierarchical Bayesian-based joint species distribution models capable of detecting paired biotic interactions were established for each species in both periods to evaluate the changes in the biotic interactions. In most of the GLM and BRT models, the full models showed better performance than the null models in predicting the species presence/absence, and the relative importance of the biotic variables in the full models increased from less than 50% in 1959 to more than 50% in 2009 for each species. Moreover, co-occurrence correlation of each paired species interaction was higher in 2009 than that in 1959. The findings suggest biotic interactions that tend to be positive play more important roles in the spatial distribution of multispecies assemblages of macrophytes and should be included in prediction models to improve prediction accuracy when forecasting macrophytes' distribution under eutrophication stress.
Project description:Stoichiometric homeostasis of element composition is one of the central concepts of ecological stoichiometry. We analyzed concentrations of macroelements (C, N, P, Ca, K, Mg, S), microelements (Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Ni, Zn) and beneficial elements (Na, Se, Si) in submerged macrophytes, water and sediments across 20 Yunnan plateau lakes. We predicted that tissue element composition in submerged macrophytes is affected by lake trophic level and taxonomy, and submerged macrophytes have weak stoichiometric homeostasis for all above 16 elements. Canonical discriminant analyses successfully discriminated among trophic level groups and taxa groups. Of all the elements, C, N, P and S most effectively discriminated among trophic level groups across 20 lakes, revealing lake trophic level mostly affect tissue macroelement composition in submerged macrophytes; while Ca, K and Se most effectively discriminated among submerged macrophytes taxa groups, suggesting taxonomy mostly affect compositions of macroelements and beneficial elements in submerged macrophytes. In addition, the stoichiometric homeostatic coefficient of 1/HCa:C for all five taxa of submerged macrophytes were less than zero, suggesting submerged macrophytes in Yunnan plateau lakes have strong Ca stoichiometric homeostasis. Our findings, not only broaden the knowledge of multielement stoichiometric homeostasis, but also help to choose most appropriate lake management strategy.
Project description:Submerged macrophytes play a structuring role in the shallow freshwater ecosystem by increasing the heterogeneous state in freshwaters. The macrophytes in genus Ottelia were featured for their broad leaves, which might consequently produce specialized functions that differed from other submerged species. To explore the potential ecological role of Ottelia, a field investigation was conducted on leaf traits in eight populations of Ottelia ranging from the southwestern Yunnan-Guizhou plateau to the southern Hainan island in China covering a distance of >1,700 km. The eight populations included all the extant Ottelia species and varieties in China except the well-documented O. alismoides. Carbon-related traits [bicarbonate usage, photosynthetic characteristics, capability of Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM)], pigment content and parameters of chlorophyll fluorescence, morphology and mass of the leaves were determined. The different populations showed distinct functional traits of mature leaves; O. acuminata var. songmingensis had the thickest and longest leaf with CaCO3 precipitation on the both sides of the leaf, and O. cordata showed putative CAM activity with the highest diel acidity changes 12.5 ?equiv g-1 FW. Our results indicated an important role of Ottelia populations in carbon cycling as the dominant species in karst freshwaters in China.
Project description:Submerged macrophytes enhance water transparency and aquatic biodiversity in shallow water ecosystems. Therefore, the return of submerged macrophytes is the target of many lake restoration projects. However, at present, north-western European aquatic ecosystems are increasingly invaded by omnivorous exotic crayfish. We hypothesize that invasive crayfish pose a novel constraint on the regeneration of submerged macrophytes in restored lakes and may jeopardize restoration efforts. We experimentally investigated whether the invasive crayfish (Procambarus clarkii Girard) affects submerged macrophyte development in a Dutch peat lake where these crayfish are expanding rapidly. Seemingly favourable abiotic conditions for macrophyte growth existed in two 0.5 ha lake enclosures, which provided shelter and reduced turbidity, and in one lake enclosure iron was added to reduce internal nutrient loading, but macrophytes did not emerge. We transplanted three submerged macrophyte species in a full factorial exclosure experiment, where we separated the effect of crayfish from large vertebrates using different mesh sizes combined with a caging treatment stocked with crayfish only. The three transplanted macrophytes grew rapidly when protected from grazing in both lake enclosures, demonstrating that abiotic conditions for growth were suitable. Crayfish strongly reduced biomass and survival of all three macrophyte species while waterfowl and fish had no additive effects. Gut contents showed that crayfish were mostly carnivorous, but also consumed macrophytes. We show that P. clarkii strongly inhibit macrophyte development once favourable abiotic conditions for macrophyte growth are restored. Therefore, expansion of invasive crayfish poses a novel threat to the restoration of shallow water bodies in north-western Europe. Prevention of introduction and spread of crayfish is urgent, as management of invasive crayfish populations is very difficult.
Project description:Leaf soluble carbohydrates (SC), free amino acids (FAA), starch, total phenolics (TOPH), carbon (C), and nitrogen (N) stoichiometry of 24 aquatic macrophyte species were studied at 52 selected sites in eastern, 31 sites in southwestern and 6 sites in western China, including 12 submerged, 6 floating-leaved, 4 emergent and 2 free-floating macrophytes. The leaf stoichiometric characteristics differed significantly among the plant species of the four different life forms, the lowest C content occurring in submerged macrophytes and the highest N content in free-floating macrophytes. Overall, though the variance explained by the linear regression models was low, the C and N contents decreased toward the northern latitudes, the C content and the C:N ratios increased with increasing altitude. Multiple regressions revealed that the stoichiometric characteristics of submerged macrophytes varied significantly across the large spatial and climatic gradients and among the species studied. For floating-leaved and emergent macrophytes, no correlation between climate factors and SC, FAA, starch, TOPH, C, and N contents and C:N ratio was observed. For free-floating macrophytes, the TOPH content was markedly positively correlated with latitude and altitude. We conclude that the C and N contents related more closely to latitude, altitude or mean annual air temperature than did the C and N metabolic indicators for the submerged macrophytes, while the relationships with the metabolic indicators turned out to be insignificant for most species of the other life forms. The results helped us to identify species with significant physiological plasticity across geographic and climatic gradients in China, and such information is useful when conducting restoration of lost aquatic plants in different climate regions.
Project description:Heterophyllous aquatic plants produce aerial (i.e., floating and terrestrial) and submerged leaves-the latter lack stomata-while homophyllous plants contain only submerged leaves, and cannot survive on land. To identify whether differences in morphogenetic potential and/or physiological stress responses are responsible for variation in phenotypic plasticity between two plants types, responses to abscisic acid (ABA) and salinity stress were compared between the closely related, but ecologically diverse pondweeds, Potamogeton wrightii (heterophyllous) and P. perfoliatus (homophyllous). The ABA-treated (1 or 10 ?M) P. wrightii plants exhibited heterophylly and produced leaves with stomata. The obligate submerged P. perfoliatus plants were able to produce stomata on their leaves, but there were no changes to leaf shape, and stomatal production occurred only at a high ABA concentration (10 ?M). Under salinity stress conditions, only P. wrightii leaves formed stomata. Additionally, the expression of stress-responsive NCED genes, which encode a key enzyme in ABA biosynthesis, was consistently up-regulated in P. wrightii, but only temporarily in P. perfoliatus. The observed species-specific gene expression patterns may be responsible for the induction or suppression of stomatal production during exposure to salinity stress. These results suggest that the two Potamogeton species have an innate morphogenetic ability to form stomata, but the actual production of stomata depends on ABA-mediated stress responses specific to each species and habitat.
Project description:Ammonium pulse attributed to runoff of urban surface and agriculture following heavy rain is common in inland aquatic systems and can cause profoundly effects on the growth of macrophytes, especially when combined with low light. In this study, three patterns of NH4-N pulse (differing in magnitude and frequency) were applied to examine their effects on the growth of three submersed macrophytes, namely, Myriophyllum spicatum, Potamogeton maackianus, and Vallisneria natans, in terms of biomass, height, branch/ramet number, root length, leaf number, and total branch length under high and low light. Results showed that NH4-N pulse caused negative effects on the biomass of the submerged macrphytes even on the 13th day after releasing NH4-N pulse. The negative effects on M. spicatum were significantly greater than that on V. natans and P. maackianus. The effects of NH4-N pulse on specific species depended on the ammonium loading patterns. The negative effects of NH4-N pulse on P. maackianus were the strongest at high loading with low frequency, and on V. natans at moderate loading with moderate frequency. For M. spicatum, no significant differences were found among the three NH4-N pulse patterns. Low light availability did not significantly aggregate the negative effects of NH4-N pulse on the growth of the submersed macrophytes. Our study contributes to revealing the roles of NH4-N pulse on the growth of aquatic plants and its species specific effects on the dynamics of submerged macrophytes in lakes.