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Soil, land care and environmental research
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Waterlogging and soil reduction affect the amount and apparent molecular weight distribution of dissolved organic matter in wetland soil: a laboratory study

Asmaa Rouwane A B , Malgorzata Grybos A B , Isabelle Bourven A , Marion Rabiet A and Gilles Guibaud A
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Groupement de Recherche Eau Sol Environnement (GRESE), University of Limoges, 123 Av. Albert Thomas, 87060 Limoges Cedex, France.

B Corresponding authors. Email: malgorzata.grybos@unilim.fr; asmaa.rouwane@etu.unilim.fr

Soil Research - https://doi.org/10.1071/SR16308
Submitted: 11 November 2016  Accepted: 19 June 2017   Published online: 19 September 2017

Abstract

The release of dissolved organic matter (DOM) from wetland soils is an important pathway for the input of organic compounds into adjacent aquatic environments. In the present study we investigated, under controlled laboratory conditions, the quantity and quality of DOM released from a wetland soil subject to waterlogging and reducing conditions. Three soil redox conditions (oxic, moderately reducing and advanced reducing) were distinguished based on nitrate, ferrous ions and sulfate concentrations in soil solution. Under each redox condition, the quantity (dissolved organic carbon (DOC), humic substances and peptides plus proteins (P-PN) and quality (aromaticity; specific ultraviolet absorbance at 254 nm (SUVA254nm)) and apparent molecular weight (aMW) distribution) of DOM were investigated. The results showed that soil redox condition affects the amount and properties of mobilised DOM. The rate of DOM release and SUVA254 values were highest during the transition from oxic to moderately reducing conditions, whereas both stabilised during progression to advanced reducing conditions. In addition, the mobilised DOM is expected to be more reactive because of an increase in polar substituents in aromatic structures between oxic and moderately reducing conditions. During the development of moderately reducing conditions, dissolved humic substances increased significantly, whereas their aMW distribution (between 500 and 6000 ) remained constant for each of the three different redox conditions. In contrast, the quantity of dissolved P-PN remained low and steady under the three redox conditions, whereas the aMW distribution of protein-like and microbial by-product-like compounds decreased during the development of reducing conditions (aMW of compounds between 100 and >100 000).

Additional keywords: dissolved organic carbon, humic substances, hydromorphic soil, proteins, reducing conditions.


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