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Impeded drainage stimulates extracellular phenol oxidase activity in riparian peat cores

Toberman, H.; Freeman, C.; Artz, R. R. E.; Evans, C. D.; Fenner, N.. 2008 Impeded drainage stimulates extracellular phenol oxidase activity in riparian peat cores. Soil Use and Management, 24 (4). 357-365. 10.1111/j.1475-2473.2008.00174.x

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Abstract/Summary

Peat drainage, a common land-use practice in Europe, has been associated with habitat degradation and increased particulate and dissolved carbon release. In the UK, peatland drain blockage has been encouraged in recent years as a management practice to preserve peatland habitats and to reduce fluvial carbon loss and municipal water discoloration. Drain blockage has, however, been found to increase drain-water dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations and coloration in the short term. In order to investigate the contribution of changes in extracellular phenol oxidase activity to the increase in water coloration following peatland drain blockage, cores collected from a riparian peatland in North Wales were incubated under impeded drainage conditions. Impeded drainage resulted in the stimulation of peat extracellular phenol oxidase activity and heightened soluble phenolic concentrations, suggesting that changes in extracellular phenol oxidase activity may be a key driver of increases in DOC and water coloration following peatland drain blockage. An increase in peat pH with impeded drainage was also observed that may have contributed to the heightened soluble phenolic concentrations – directly (through effects on solubility) and/or indirectly as a driver of the elevated extracellular phenol oxidase activity.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1111/j.1475-2473.2008.00174.x
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biogeochemistry
CEH Sections: Emmett
ISSN: 0266-0032
Additional Keywords: Phenol oxidase, soil enzymes, peatland, DOC, drainage, decomposition
NORA Subject Terms: Agriculture and Soil Science
Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 17 Feb 2009 12:10
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/4446

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