Southern Appalachian Peatlands Sustain Unique Assemblages of Archaea

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Ashley Nicole Hawkins (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Suzanna Bräuer

Abstract: Numerous aspects of three peatlands (Pineola Bog, NC, Sugar Mountain Bog, NC, and Tater Hill Bog, NC) located along the Southern Appalachian highlands of western North Carolina were analyzed to elucidate the impact on future climatic warming events via the release of the greenhouse gas methane. Quantitative analyses demonstrated a methanogenic community comprising roughly 50% of the Archaeal. A hydrogenotrophic Methanobacterium sp. was enriched for from Pineola Bog using culture-based techniques, corroborating molecular data and indicating the presence of Methanobacteriales species (0.4%) in this peatland. In addition to the methanogenic population, many non-methanogenic species were also found among the peatlands both from DNA and cDNA analyses. Members of the deep-branching Euryarchaeota, represented 5-18% of the sequences retrieved from each of the three sites. Crenarchaeota numbers were found to significantly contribute to the overall Archaeal community across sites. Methane emission studies revealed the peak methane production to be just below (0-25 cm) the surface of the water table in each site, as was expected. Nutrient analysis of the study sites indicated a strong signature from the underlying bedrock of the area as concentrations of Fe, Al, and Na were at the high end of normal compared to other peatlands globally.

Additional Information

Hawkins, A.N. (2013). Southern Appalachian Peatlands Sustain Unique Assemblages of Archaea. Unpublished master’s thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2013
Methanogen, Archaea, Wetlands, Peat

Email this document to