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Limnology

pp 1–11 | Cite as

Differences in dissolved phosphate in shallow-lake waters as determined by spectrophotometry and ion chromatography

  • Rong Yi
  • Peixue Song
  • Xin Liu
  • Masahiro Maruo
  • Syuhei BanEmail author
Special Feature: Original Article

Abstract

Phosphorus (P) plays important roles in aquatic ecosystems, but accurately determining phosphorus species (particularly bioavailable phosphate) is difficult. When phosphate concentrations are spectrophotometrically measured as soluble reactive P (SRP), the actual values are often overestimated. Ion chromatography is one method for accurately measuring orthophosphate concentrations. To clarify how the spectrophotometrical measurement overestimates actual phosphate concentrations, we compared estimates of phosphate concentrations in lake waters using both methods. SRP and orthophosphate concentrations in water samples collected from four shallow lakes around Lake Biwa, Japan, were determined monthly for 1 year by spectrophotometry and ion chromatography, respectively. SRP concentrations were frequently higher than those for orthophosphate in all lakes throughout the study period, suggesting that SRP and orthophosphate are not equivalent, although a significant relationship was found between them. Orthophosphate/SRP (ortho/SRP) ratios varied spatiotemporally in all lakes (range 0.11–1.04; mean 0.56), being well predicted by biological-mediated relevant parameters using a stepwise multiple logistic regression analysis (R2 = 0.76). The results implied that organic matter associated with biological activity contributes to the variability in ortho/SRP ratios. Such large variability in ortho/SRP ratios emphasizes the importance of accurate orthophosphate estimates for understanding P dynamics in aquatic ecosystems.

Keywords

Bioavailable phosphorus Analytical methods Orthophosphate/SRP ratio Biological activity Freshwater lakes 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We thank the members of our laboratories at The University of Shiga Prefecture for supporting the field and laboratory work. This study was supported through grants-in-aid for Specially Promoted Research in The University of Shiga Prefecture to MM, a grant-in-aid for Scientific Research (grant no. 18H03961) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science to SB, and a Chinese Scholarship Council Grant to RY. We thank Gareth Thomas, PhD, from Edanz Group (www.edanzediting.com/ac) for editing a draft of this manuscript.

Supplementary material

10201_2019_574_MOESM1_ESM.docx (23 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 22 kb)

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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Limnology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ecosystem Studies, School of Environmental ScienceThe University of Shiga PrefectureHikoneJapan
  2. 2.School of City and Architecture EngineeringZaozhuang UniversityZaozhuangChina

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