Colorado mountains
From Long-Term Data to Understanding: Toward a Predictive Ecology
2015 LTER ASM Estes Park, CO - August 30 - September 2, 2015

Marsh-Estuary Linkages, System Metabolism and Carbon Dynamics

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Shiyu Wang
Charles Hopkinson
Daniela Di Iorio
Weijun Cai

Previous studies have shown that the salt marsh is not only a source of organic carbon to estuarine waters, but also a source of inorganic carbon (TCO2). The export of TCO2 and the net heterotrophic metabolism of estuarine and nearshore receiving waters contributes to the inner coastal ocean in the GA Bight being a source of CO2 to the atmosphere (Hopkinson 1988, Cai & Wang 2003). Our research focuses on better understanding the linkages between marsh, estuary and the atmosphere. Here we report observations on estuarine metabolism, the exchange of TCO2 and O2 between marsh and estuary, and the export of TCO2 to the coastal ocean. Our study is closely coupled to a concurrent eddy covariance analysis of the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of the marsh platform.

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