Sediments are significant methane (CH4) sources of the atmosphere. However, the mechanisms of CH4 generation remain unclear in sediments of shallow urban lakes. The aims of this investigation were to study the characterization of environmental parameters, CH4 generation, and methanogen populations in Wulongtan Lake, China, which is affected solely by nonpoint pollution.
Materials and methods
The concentrations of CH4 in the atmosphere and of vertical sediment profiles and the methane flux at the air–water interface were monitored in the summer of 2012. Environmental parameters in the water column and in the vertical sediment profiles were assayed. The activities of cellulose, saccharase, polyphenol oxidase, and urease enzyme and 16S rRNA gene copy numbers of Archaea (ARC), Methanobacteriales (MBT), Methanococcales (MCC), Methanomicrobiales (MMB), Methanosarcinales (MSL), Methanosarcinaceae (MSC), and Methanosaetaceae (MST) were determined in the vertical sediment profiles. The abundance of methyl–coenzyme A reductase (ME) gene was also determined to evaluate the total activities of methanogens.
Results and discussion
High CH4 concentrations were detected in the atmosphere above the lake, and the mean CH4 flux at the air–water interface was 6.21 mM m−2 h−1. Dissolved oxygen decreased with an increase of water depth. Eh values and CH4 contents increased, but total nitrogen, water content, and total organic carbon (TOC) decreased with an increase of sediment depth. Cellulose, saccharase, polyphenol oxidase, and urease activities were detected in all sedimentary layers. The copy number of 16S rRNA gene (wet weight) for Archaea reached the highest value in the surface sediment. Copy numbers of ME were higher at 12–33 cm than at 0–6 cm. In general, abundances of MMB, MBT, and MSL were higher than that of MCC in the same sedimentary layer. 16S rRNA gene copy numbers of MST decreased with increasing depth, while MSC was higher at 18–27 cm than that at other sections. These indicate that hydrogenotrophic, aceticlastic, and methylotrophic pathways coexisted in these sediments. Principal component analysis revealed that in the sediments, the level of CH4 was closely related with several parameters including saccharase, urease, ME, and MBT, while TOC content was related to CEL, MST, ARC, water content, and Eh.
High CH4 release potential was detected in this shallow urban lake and can be ascribed to the anaerobic aquatic environment, bacterial enzyme activities, and methanogens. The orders MMB, MBT, and MSL were dominant in sediments for CH4 production. The presence of orders or families of methanogens might be determined by the types of available substrates in lake sediments.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
Allen DE, Dalal RC, Rennenberg H, Meyer RL, Reeves S, Schmidt S (2007) Spatial and temporal variation of nitrous oxide and methane flux between subtropical mangrove sediments and the atmosphere. Soil Biol Biochem 39:622–631
Bao C, Fang CL (2012) Water resources flows related to urbanization in China: challenges and perspectives for water management and urban development. Water Resour Manag 26:531–552
Bastviken D, Ejlertsson J, Sundh I, Tranvik L (2003) Methane as a source of carbon and energy for lake pelagic food webs. Ecology 84:969–981
Bellido JL, Peltomaa E, Ojala A (2011) An urban boreal lake basin as a source of CO2 and CH4. Environ Pollut 159:1649–1659
Cadillo-Quiroz H, Yashiro E, Yavitt JB, Zinder SH (2008) Characterization of the archaeal community in a minerotrophic fen and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism directed isolation of a novel hydrogenotrophic methanogen. Appl Environ Microbiol 74:2059–2068
Chen JQ, Yin XJ (2013) Stratified communities of methanogens in the Jiulong River estuarine sediments, Southern China. Indian J Microbiol 53(4):432–437
Dan JG, Kumai T, Sugimoto A, Murase J (2004) Biotic and abiotic methane releases from Lake Biwa sediment slurry. Limnology 5:149–154
Dhillon A, Lever M, Lloyd KG, Albert DB, Sogin ML, Teske A (2005) Methanogen diversity evidenced by molecular characterization of methyl coenzyme M reductase A (mcrA) genes in hydrothermal sediments of the Guaymas Basin. Appl Environ Microbiol 71:4592–4601
Diem TS, Koch S, Schwarzenbach B, Wehrli CJ (2012) Greenhouse gas emissions (CO2, CH4, and N2O) from several perialpine and alpine hydropower reservoirs by diffusion and loss in turbines. Aquat Sci 74:619–635
Falz KZ, Holliger C, Grobkopf R, Liesack W, Nozhevnikova AN, Muller B, Wehrli B, Hahn D (1999) Vertical distribution of methanogens in the anoxic sediment of Rotsee (Switzerland). Appl Environ Microbiol 65:2402–2408
Gebert J, Koethe H, Groengroeft A (2006) Prognosis of methane formation by river sediments. J Soils Sediments 6:75–83
Guan SY (1986) Survey specification for lake eutrophication. Environmental Science, Beijing. Soil Enzymes and Its Methodology. Beijing Agricultural Press (in Chinese)
Hales BA, Edwards C, Ritchie DA, Hall G, Pickup RW, Saunders JR (1996) Isolation and identification of methanogen-specific DNA from blanket bog peat by PCR amplification and sequence analysis. Appl Environ Microbiol 62:668–675
Huang Y, Sass RL, Fisher FM (1998) A semi-empirical model of methane emission from flooded rice paddy soils. Global Change Biol 4:247–268
Hueso S, Hernández T, García C (2011) Resistance and resilience of the soil microbial biomass to severe drought in semiarid soils: The importance of organic amendments. Appl Soil Ecol 50:27–36
Juutinen S, Rantakari M, Kortelainen P, Huttunen JT, Larmola T, Alm J, Silvola J, Martikainen PJ (2009) Methane dynamics in different boreal lake types. Biogeosciences 6:209–223
Liu YC, Whitman WB (2008) Metabolic, phylogenetic, and ecological diversity of the methanogenic Archaea. Ann NY Acad Sci 1125:171–189
Liu DY, Ding WX, Jia ZJ, Cai ZC (2012) The impact of dissolved organic carbon on the spatial variability of methanogenic Archaea communities in natural wetland ecosystems across China. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 96:253–263
Madejón E, Burgos P, López R, Cabrera F (2001) Soil enzymatic response to addition of heavy metals with organic residues. Biol Fert Soils 34:144–150
Matthews E, Fung I (1987) Methane emission from natural wetlands: global distribution, area, and environmental characteristics of sources. Global Biogeochem Cycles 1:61–86
Mikaloff Fletcher SE, Tans PP, Bruhwiler LM, Miller JB, Heimann M (2004) CH4 sources estimated from atmospheric observations of CH4 and its 13C/12C isotopic ratios: 1. Inverse modeling of source processes. Global Biogeochem Cycles 18:1–17
Murase J, Sugimoto A (2001) Spatial distribution of methane in the Lake Biwa sediments and its carbon isotopic compositions. J Geophys Res 35:257–263
Oremland RS (1988) Biogeochemistry of methanogenic bacteria. In: Zehnder AKB (ed) Biology of anearobic microorganisms. Wiley, New York, pp 641–705
Qin S, Hu C, Dong W (2010) Nitrification results in underestimation of soil urease activity as determined by ammonium production rate. Pedobiologia 53:401–404
Schmaljohann R (1996) Methane dynamics in the sediment and water column of Kiel Harbour (Baltic Sea). Mar Ecol Prog Ser 131:263–273
Siljanen HM, Saari A, Krause S, Lensu A, Abell GC, Bodrossy L, Bodelier PL, Martikainen PJ (2011) Hydrology is reflected in the functioning and community composition of methanotrophs in the littoral wetland of a boreal lake. FEMS Microbiol Ecology 75:430–445
Steinberg LM, Regan JM (2008) Phylogenetic comparison of the methanogenic communities from an acidic, oligotrophic fen and an anaerobic digester treating municipal wastewater sludge. Appl Environ Microbiol 74:6663–6671
Steinberg LM, Regan JM (2009) mcrA-targeted real-time quantitative PCR method to examine methanogen communities. Appl Environ Microbiol 75:4435–4442
Walsh CJ (2000) Urban impacts on the ecology of receiving waters: a framework for assessment, conservation and restoration. Hydrobiologia 431:107–114
Whitman WB, Bowen TL, Boone DR (2006) The methanogenic bacteria. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 3:165–207
Ye WJ, Liu XL, Lin SQ, Tan J, Pan JL, Li DT, Yang H (2009) The vertical distribution of bacterial and archaeal communities in the water and sediment of Lake Taihu. FEMS Microbiol Ecology 70:107–120
Yu Y, Lee C, Kim J, Hwang S (2005) Group-specific primer and probe sets to detect methanogenic communities using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Biotechnol Bioeng 89:670–679
Zhang CY, Liu XL, Dong XZ (2004) Syntrophomonas curvata sp. nov., an anaerobe that degrades fatty acids in co-culture with methanogens. Int J Syst Evol Microbiol 54:969–973
Zhu DL, Sun C, He H (2012) Detection methanogens in newly settled sediments from Xuanwu Lake in Nanjing, China. Curr Microbiol 64:539–544
Zinder SH (1993) Physiological ecology of methanogens. In: Ferry JG (ed.) Methanogenesis: Ecology, Physiology, Biochemistry and Genetics, Chapman & Hall, New York, pp 128–206
We appreciate greatly the grants from the National Science Fund for the Jiangsu Natural Science Fund (BK2012413), Distinguished Young Scholars (51225901), National Program on Key Basic project “973” (2010CB429006), Jiangsu Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars (BK2012037), and Critical Patented Projects in the Control and Management of the National Polluted Water (2012ZX07101-008).
Responsible editor: Ian Foster
Electronic supplementary material
Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.
(DOCX 1,397 kb)
About this article
Cite this article
Zhang, S., Guo, C., Wang, C. et al. Detection of methane biogenesis in a shallow urban lake in summer. J Soils Sediments 14, 1004–1012 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11368-014-0858-8
- Methyl–coenzyme A reductase