Pedosphere 27(5): 856--867, 2017
ISSN 1002-0160/CN 32-1315/P
©2017 Soil Science Society of China
Published by Elsevier B.V. and Science Press
Changes in soil organic carbon dynamics in a native C4 plant-dominated tidal marsh following Spartina alterniflora invasion
JIN Baoshi1,2, LAI Derrick Yuk Fo3, GAO Dengzhou1, TONG Chuan1,4, ZENG Congsheng1,4
1School of Geographical Sciences, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou 350007 (China)
2College of Resources and Environment Science, Anqing Normal University, Anqing 246133 (China)
3Department of Geography and Resource Management, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (China)
4Key Laboratory of Humid Subtropical Eco-Geographical Process of Ministry of Education, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou 350007 (China)
ABSTRACT
      Invasion of an exotic C4 plant Spartina alterniflora has been shown to increase soil organic carbon (SOC) concentrations in native C3 plant-dominated coastal wetlands of China. However, little is known about the effects of S. alterniflora invasion on SOC concentrations and fractions in tidal marshes dominated by native C4 plants. In this study, a field experiment was conducted in a tidal marsh dominated by the native C4 plant Cyperus malaccensis in the Minjiang River estuary, China. Concentrations of SOC and liable SOC fractions, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), microbial biomass carbon (MBC), and easily oxidizable carbon (EOC), were measured in the top 50-cm soils of the C. malaccensis community, as well as those of three S. alterniflora communities with an invasion duration of 0-4 years (SA-4), 4-8 years (SA-8), and 8-12 years (SA-12), respectively. Results showed that both SOC stocks in the 50-cm soils and mean SOC concentrations in the surface soils (0-10 cm) of the C. malaccensis community increased with the duration of S. alterniflora invasion, whereas SOC concentrations in the 10-50-cm soils decreased slightly during the initial period of S. alterniflora invasion, before increasing again. The pattern of changes in labile SOC fractions (DOC, MBC, and EOC) with invasion duration was generally similar to that of SOC, while the ratios of labile SOC fractions to total SOC (DOC:SOC, MBC:SOC, and EOC:SOC) decreased significantly with the duration of S. alterniflora invasion. The findings of this study suggest that invasion of the exotic C4 plant S. alterniflora into a marsh dominated by the native C4 plant C. malaccensis would enhance SOC sequestration owing to the greater amount of biomass and lower proportion of labile SOC fractions present in the S. alterniflora communities.
Key Words:  carbon sequestration, carbon stock, coastal wetland, labile organic carbon fractions, plant invasion, redundancy analyses, river estuary
Citation: Jin, B., Yuk, F., Gao, D., Tong, C. and Zeng, C. 2017. Changes in soil organic carbon dynamics in a native C4 plant-dominated tidal marsh following Spartina alterniflora invasion. Pedosphere. 27(5): 856-867.
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