Dissolved oxygen stratification changes nitrogen speciation and transformation in a stratified lake

  • Xiaoxuan Su
  • Qiang He
  • Yufeng Mao
  • Yi Chen
  • Zhi Hu
Research Article


Dissolved oxygen (DO) stratification is a natural phenomenon in lakes, which potentially influences nitrogen (N) biogeochemical cycle. However, the specific effects of DO stratification on N speciation and transformation behaviors in different water layers are still poorly understood. Here, we reported that DO stratification remarkably influenced N species and transformation pathways in different water columns by high frequency sampling during summers in Longjing Lake, China. Results showed that DO stratification in the lake created three water layers: epilimnion (1–3 m), oxycline (4–11 m), and hypolimnion (12–20 m). In the epilimnion, N speciation was mainly controlled by phytoplankton assimilation and organic N dominated in this layer. Oxycline was the major place for N transformations and had the most notable N removal capacity (714 kg N from June to August). In the hypolimnion, \( {\mathrm{NH}}_4^{+} \) was the major N species, and sediment release contributed nearly 85% hypolimnetic \( {\mathrm{NH}}_4^{+} \). Furthermore, approximately 8 kg of dissolved N2O was also accumulated in the hypolimnion, contributing ~ 70% of N2O in the whole lake. Overall, our results indicated that DO stratification caused the shifts in N speciation and transformation behaviors among different water columns, which may have a great implication for lake managements for providing separated protection strategies from different water depths.


Longjing Lake Dissolved oxygen stratification Thermal stratification Nitrogen speciation Nutrient 


Funding information

This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NO.51278508) and the National Water Pollution Control and Treatment Science and Technology Major Project (2012ZX07307-001).

Supplementary material

11356_2018_3716_MOESM1_ESM.docx (147 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 147 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of the Three Gorges Reservoir Region’s Eco-Environment, Ministry of EducationChongqing UniversityChongqingChina
  2. 2.College of Urban Construction & Environmental EngineeringChongqing UniversityChongqingChina

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