plant shading review - Regulation of benthic algal and...

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Regulation of benthic algal and animal communities by salt marsh plants: impact of shading. Christine R. Whitcraft and Lisa A. Levin Title : The title is very accurate and inviting. It states clearly the main focus of the paper. Introduction : This study was done to investigate the relationships and responses between vascular plants and the microalgae and macrobenthic communities in Southern California salt marshes. Understanding the functional role of plants in this environment is important to making conservation and restoration decisions. The study addresses the theory that aboveground vegetation has an effect on benthic environmental conditions, and microalgal and macrofaunal community parameters. The authors hypothesize that modifying plant cover will alter conditions and the microalgal community, that these changes will affect the macrofaunal community, that structure and light have differing effects, and that these effects will be seen equally in Spartina and Salicornia habitats. Methods : Two plots in an intertidal marsh were selected based on their percent coverage by Spartina and Salicornia . Eight separate experimental blocks were established in each area and three treatments per block were set up (as I understand it; this was a confusing part). The treatment types were: no plants and no shade (with chicken wire), no plants with a shade cover, and a control (plants with chicken wire). The treatments were maintained weekly for a year. Salinity and temperature were measured each week while water content, redox potential, particle size, organic matter, belowground plant detrital biomass, algal biomass, and macrofaunal sampling was conducted at 3 and 6 months after initial treatment setup. Stable isotopic analysis was performed to determine whether primary producers change with
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This note was uploaded on 04/13/2008 for the course MSCI 101 taught by Professor Wolfe during the Spring '08 term at Coastal Carolina University.

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plant shading review - Regulation of benthic algal and...

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