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Influence of suspended mussel lines on the biogeochemical fluxes in adjacent water in the Îles-de-la-Madeleine (Quebec, Canada)

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Oxygen consumption and nutrient fluxes were measured in 80 L enclosures containing water, 1- or 2-year-old mussels, or 1- or 2-year-old line sections (mussels plus associated fauna – organic matter complex: AFOM) in August and September 2003 in the Îles-de-la-Madeleine. Mussel lines acted as nutrient sources and oxygen sinks in adjacent water. The magnitude of fluxes at the mussel line interface depended on the nutrient (NH4 >> Si(OH)4, PO4 > NO3 > NO2). Mussel metabolism contributed greatly to O2 consumption and NH4 and PO4 releases. Mussel influence was greater in stressful periods. The AFOM complex mainly contributed to NO3, NO2, and Si(OH)4 fluxes. These fluxes could originate from organic matter decomposition rather than from associated faunal metabolism. The influence of AFOM depended on its composition and thus on line immersion time. Mussel lines by ammonia releases could be a factor of reduction of N limitation in the water column. Mussel line should be integrated as a new interface of biogeochemical exchanges in environmental carrying capacity studies.

Des flux d'oxygène et de nutriments ont été mesurés dans des enceintes de 80 L contenant de l'eau, des moules de 1 ou 2 ans, ou des sections de filières de 1 ou 2 ans (moules plus complexe faune associée – matière organique : AFOM) en août et en septembre 2003 aux Îles-de-la-Madeleine. Les filières agissent comme une source de nutriments et comme un puit d'oxygène dans l'eau adjacente. L'importance des flux à l'interface de la filière dépend du nutriment (NH4 >> Si(OH)4, PO4 > NO3 > NO2). Le métabolisme des moules contribue largement à la consommation d'O2 et à la libération de NH4 et de PO4. L'influence des moules est plus importante en période de stress. Le complexe AFOM contribue principalement aux flux de NO3, de NO2 et de Si(OH)4. Ces flux proviennent probablement davantage de la dégradation de la matière organique que du métabolisme de la faune associée. L'influence du complexe AFOM dépend de sa composition et donc du temps d'immersion des lignes. Grâce à leur production d'ammonium, les filières de moules pourraient être un facteur de réduction de la limitation en azote du milieu. Les filières de moules devraient être intégrées comme une nouvelle interface d'échanges biogéochimiques dans les études de capacité de charge.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2006

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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