Seasonal distribution of bacteria in salt marsh sediments of North Carolina

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Parke A. Rublee, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: The number and size of bacteria at four depths (0-1, 5-6, 10-11, and 20-21 cm) in a North Carolina salt marsh were minotored by direct counts for 13 months. The number of bacteria reached a maximum of about 1•4 × 1010 cells cm-3 at the sediment surface in October, corresponding to the period of Spartina alterniflora die-back. Cell numbers were lowest and most consistent throughout the year at the 20 cm depth of sediment. Cell volumes averaged 0•2 µm3 at the marsh surface and decreased with depth. Mean standing crop of bacteria to a depth of 20 cm of sediment was about 14 g bacterial carbon m-2. In surface sediments bacteria contribute up to 15% and algae up to 10% of total living microbial biomass as estimated by adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Bacteria were the major biomass component at sediment depths of 5, 10 and 20 cm. At all depths the microbial community contributes < 4% total organic carbon and < 8 % of total nitrogen.

Additional Information

Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science
Language: English
Date: 1982
bacteria, salt marshes, microorganisms, intertidal environment

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