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Title: The issue of outwelling in the Guadiana River estuary (Portugal): some findings and research suggestions in the context of recent evidence
Authors: Bettencourt, A.M.
Quaresma, L.
Lança, M.J.
Keywords: salt marsh
nitrogen cycle
Issue Date: 2007
Publisher: Springer
Abstract: Abstract The ‘‘Outwelling Theory’’ states that salt marshes play a major role in exporting production to adjacent estuarine and coastal ecosystems. However, it has been found that some marshes act as net importers instead of net exporters of organic matter and nutrients. Once we include mangroves and refine the analysis to comprehend bacterioplankton, organic and stable isotope tracers, the picture became, more complex, making room for a revival of the outwelling idea. The exchanges between the Castro Marim salt marsh and the main estuary were tentatively established determining periodically, in a selected cross-section, the concentrations of TSS, FSS, VSS, NH4, NO2, NO3, NKjeldhal, SiO4, PO4, TDP, Chlorophyll a and Pheopigments, measuring their fluxes along tidal cycles and computing the corresponding budgets. Apparently, the sedimentary behaviour of the marsh will be close to equilibrium during the period of study. However, it will import mainly inert matter and export mainly organic matter in the same period. Moreover, extrapolating these results to the entire Guadiana salt marshes, the exchanges of sediment do not seem to be significant. Particularly, the marshes will not trap a significantly amount sediment transported by the main river (0.5%). It also seems to follow, that in a general way, the Guadiana salt marshes might have a more significant role than was anticipated in the system economy ofOMand nutrients and their outwelling to coastal waters, assuring outputs that could amount to something like 6% of the river load of N, 1.2% of the river load of P, and 20-57% of the river load of TOC, for an average year, and 42% of the river load of Nand 35% of the river load of P in a dry year. These findings suggest that a more detailed investigation, over an extended period of time, is certainly worthwhile.
Type: article
Appears in Collections:MED - Publicações - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais Com Arbitragem Científica

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