tag: peat

Changes in nitrogen functional genes and microbial populations in soil profiles of a peatland under different burning regimes

Microbes in peatlands provide key ecosystem services and are essential for their role in biogeochemical cycling. Prescribed burning is a common aspect of peatland management but the practice has been criticized for being ecologically damaging due to its effect on the biological, chemical and physical properties of the soil. It …

Microbial communities and biogeochemical functioning across peatlands in the Athabasca Oil Sands region of Canada: Implications for reclamation and management

Peatlands play an important role in global biogeochemical cycles and are essential for multiple ecosystem functions. Understanding the environmental drivers of microbial functioning and community structure can provide insights to enable effective and evidence-based management. However, it remains largely unknown how microbial diversity contributes to the functioning of belowground processes. …

Aspects of microbial communities in peatland carbon cycling under changing climate and land use pressures.

This is a perspective review authored by peatland scientists, microbial ecologists, land managers and non-governmental organisations who were attendees at a series of three workshops held at The University of Manchester in 2019-2020. Here we review the impacts of climate change (search criteria for references are given in the introduction …

Towards a microbial process-based understanding of the resilience of peatland ecosystem service provisioning – A research agenda

Peatlands are wetland ecosystems with great significance as natural habitats and as major global carbon stores. They have been subject to widespread exploitation and degradation with resulting losses in characteristic biota and ecosystem functions such as climate regulation. More recently, large-scale programmes have been established to restore peatland ecosystems and …

Budget 2020: enough cash for trees and soil?

Visit the University of Derby blog for this article I wrote about the new UK budget in March 2020. It’s just over a week since the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak unleashed his ambitious ’spending spree’ budget, marking an end to austerity as a UK economic policy. Instead there …

Integrating microbiomics into peatland management and restoration

Peatlands are Important global carbon stores but are also sensitive climatically controlled ecosystems dependent on the maintenance of high water tables. Consequently they are under threat in warmer drier future climate conditions. The natural resilience of peatland systems and the potential to engineer resilience through peatland restoration are therefore important …

Bacterial and fungal representation and interactions in a former degraded upland peatland vegetation mosaic undergoing restoration

Peatlands are under threat from land management, anthropogenic pollution and climate change. These factors are implicated in severe degradation of ombrotrophic peatlands in the Southern Pennines of northern England. Significant areas of unconsolidated bare peat are both highly vulnerable to peat erosion and resistant to natural re-vegetation. Restoration efforts during …

Bacterial and fungal communities in a degraded ombrotrophic peatland undergoing natural and managed re-vegetation

The UK hosts 15-19% of global upland ombrotrophic (rain fed) peatlands that are estimated to store 3.2 billion tonnes of carbon and represent a critical upland habitat with regard to biodiversity and ecosystem services provision. Net production is dependent on an imbalance between growth of peat-forming Sphagnum mosses and microbial …

Long-term effects of air pollution on microbial communities of moorland peat

Upland peatlands receive the majority of their ecosystem inputs through precipitation, which delivers not only moisture but also atmospheric gases and particulates. Pristine peatlands are characterised by nutrient limitation, leading to the establishment of oligotrophic organism communities both above- and below-ground. Sphagnum mosses in particular thrive, and their presence promotes …