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Title: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities exhibit no biomass or compositional response to two years of simulated nitrogen deposition in a semiarid grassland: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities

Abstract

Nitrogen (N) deposition affects myriad aspects of terrestrial ecosystem structure and function, and microbial communities may be particularly sensitive to anthropogenic N inputs. However, our understanding of N deposition effects on microbial communities is far from complete, especially for drylands where data are comparatively rare. To address the need for an improved understanding of dryland biological responses to N deposition, we conducted a two-year fertilization experiment in a semiarid grassland on the Colorado Plateau in the southwestern United States. We evaluated effects of varied levels of N inputs on archaeal, bacterial, fungal and chlorophyte community composition within three microhabitats: biological soil crusts (biocrusts), soil below biocrusts, and the plant rhizosphere. Surprisingly, N addition did not affect the community composition or diversity of any of these microbial groups; however, microbial community composition varied significantly among sampling microhabitats. Further, while plant richness, diversity, and cover showed no response to N addition, there were strong linkages between plant properties and microbial community structure. Overall, these findings highlight the potential for some dryland communities to have limited biotic ability to retain augmented N inputs, possibly leading to large N losses to the atmosphere and to aquatic systems.

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [3];  [3];  [4]
  1. U.S. Geological Survey, Moab, UT (United States). Southwest Biological Science Center; Colorado Mesa Univ., Grand Junction, CO (United States)
  2. West Virginia Univ., Morgantown, WV (United States)
  3. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  4. U.S. Geological Survey, Moab, UT (United States). Southwest Biological Science Center
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC). Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
OSTI Identifier:
1414108
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-17-22347
Journal ID: ISSN 1462-2912
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Environmental Microbiology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 19; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 1462-2912
Publisher:
Wiley
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; Biological Science

Citation Formats

McHugh, Theresa A., Morrissey, Ember M., Mueller, Rebecca C., Gallegos-Graves, La Verne, Kuske, Cheryl R., and Reed, Sasha C. Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities exhibit no biomass or compositional response to two years of simulated nitrogen deposition in a semiarid grassland: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1111/1462-2920.13678.
McHugh, Theresa A., Morrissey, Ember M., Mueller, Rebecca C., Gallegos-Graves, La Verne, Kuske, Cheryl R., & Reed, Sasha C. Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities exhibit no biomass or compositional response to two years of simulated nitrogen deposition in a semiarid grassland: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities. United States. doi:10.1111/1462-2920.13678.
McHugh, Theresa A., Morrissey, Ember M., Mueller, Rebecca C., Gallegos-Graves, La Verne, Kuske, Cheryl R., and Reed, Sasha C. Mon . "Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities exhibit no biomass or compositional response to two years of simulated nitrogen deposition in a semiarid grassland: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities". United States. doi:10.1111/1462-2920.13678. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1414108.
@article{osti_1414108,
title = {Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities exhibit no biomass or compositional response to two years of simulated nitrogen deposition in a semiarid grassland: Bacterial, fungal, and plant communities},
author = {McHugh, Theresa A. and Morrissey, Ember M. and Mueller, Rebecca C. and Gallegos-Graves, La Verne and Kuske, Cheryl R. and Reed, Sasha C.},
abstractNote = {Nitrogen (N) deposition affects myriad aspects of terrestrial ecosystem structure and function, and microbial communities may be particularly sensitive to anthropogenic N inputs. However, our understanding of N deposition effects on microbial communities is far from complete, especially for drylands where data are comparatively rare. To address the need for an improved understanding of dryland biological responses to N deposition, we conducted a two-year fertilization experiment in a semiarid grassland on the Colorado Plateau in the southwestern United States. We evaluated effects of varied levels of N inputs on archaeal, bacterial, fungal and chlorophyte community composition within three microhabitats: biological soil crusts (biocrusts), soil below biocrusts, and the plant rhizosphere. Surprisingly, N addition did not affect the community composition or diversity of any of these microbial groups; however, microbial community composition varied significantly among sampling microhabitats. Further, while plant richness, diversity, and cover showed no response to N addition, there were strong linkages between plant properties and microbial community structure. Overall, these findings highlight the potential for some dryland communities to have limited biotic ability to retain augmented N inputs, possibly leading to large N losses to the atmosphere and to aquatic systems.},
doi = {10.1111/1462-2920.13678},
journal = {Environmental Microbiology},
number = 4,
volume = 19,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {3}
}

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