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Organic carbon flux to a large salt lake pyramid lake nevada usa

Organic carbon flux to a large salt lake pyramid lake nevada usa

Internationale Revue der Gesamten Hydrobiologie 71(5): 621-654

Energy flux to a large, deep, salt lake from phytoplankton, periphyton and marcrophyte primary production as well as fluvial transport and wind-transported terrestrial vegetation and dust were quantified. Average areal phytoplankton net photosynthesis was 511 mg C m-2 d-1. Highest rates were during water-blooms of the bluegreen alga, Nodularia spumigena. Although areal daily net photosynthesis by periphyton in Pyramid Lake was comparable to other salt lakes, annual carbon influx by periphyton was small due to the lake's graben morphology and moderate euphotic depth (mean, 11.9 m). Macrophytes were uncommon and, therefore a minor source of energy. Truckee River is the only major fluvial discharge to Pyramid Lake and dissolved organic carbon was the principal organic carbon fraction in river water. Large upstream water diversions coupled with several drought years resulted in an average fluvial organic carbon load of only 7.3 g C m-2 y-1 or 4% of median phytoplankton net photosynthesis. Tumbleweeds were the most common terrestrial plant material observed in Pyramid Lake comprising a maximum projected importance of 6% of total annual carbon input. Windborne dust represented <1% of annual carbon input. Phytoplankton primary production is the predominant energy source to Pyramid Lake, accounting for over 80% of annual carbon influx. The relative magnitude of autochthonous and allochthonous vectors to the annual carbon budget of this desert salt lake are comparable to those of the few other large lakes for which detailed energy input budgets have been calculated.

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Accession: 006042154

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DOI: 10.1002/iroh.19860710504

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