Quantcast

The C:N:P ratio of phytoplankton determines the relative amounts of dissolved inorganic nitrogen and phosphorus released during aerobic decomposition

Research paper by Yasuhiko Tezuka

Indexed on: 01 Mar '89Published on: 01 Mar '89Published in: Hydrobiologia



Abstract

Three phytoplankton assemblages, with different C:N:P ratios of 314:55:1, 103:17:1, and 57:5.5:1 (by weight), were prepared by growing lake phytoplankton in artificial media with different N:P supply ratios and then decomposed under aerobic conditions for three months.There was no net release of dissolved inorganic phosphorus (DIP) from the phytoplankton assemblage with the highest C:N:P ratio, in contrast with an abundant liberation of DIP from that with the lowest C:N:P ratio. On the other hand, there was an abundant release of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) from the phytoplankton assemblage with the highest C:N:P ratio, in contrast with little or virtually no release of DIN from those with lower C:N:P ratios. Thus, it was concluded that the C:N:P ratio of phytoplankton is an important parameter to determine the relative amounts of DIP and DIN released, when they are decomposed under aerobic conditions.