Microbial Ecology

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 311–322 | Cite as

Availability of dissolved organic carbon for planktonic bacteria in oligotrophic lakes of differing humic content

  • Lars J. Tranvik


Bacterioplankton from 10 oligotrophic lakes, representing a gradient from clearwater to polyhumic, were grown in dilution cultures of sterile filtered lake water. The bacterial biomass achieved in the stationary phase of the dilution cultures was positively correlated with the amount of both humic matter and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the lakes. About the same fraction of the total DOC pool was consumed in the dilution cultures of all lakes (average 9.5%, coefficient of variation (CV) 24%), with approximately the same growth efficiency (average 26%, CV 28%). Thus, humic lakes could support a higher bacterial biomass than clearwater lakes due to their larger DOC pools. The relevance of the results to planktonic food webs of humic and clearwater lakes is discussed.


Lake Water Bacterial Biomass Humic Content Growth Efficiency Oligotrophic Lake 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lars J. Tranvik
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Ecology, LimnologyUniversity of LundLundSweden

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