Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 130, Issue 1–4, pp 1037–1042 | Cite as

Foliar Nitrogen as an Indicator of Nitrogen Deposition and Critical Loads Exceedance on a European Scale

  • Carole E.R. Pitcairn
  • Ian D. Leith
  • David Fowler
  • Ken J. Hargreaves
  • Masoud Moghaddam
  • Valerie H. Kennedy
  • Lennart Granat
Article

Abstract

The foliar N content of bryophytes and Calluna vulgaris (L.) has been shown to be an indicator of atmospheric N deposition in the UK at a regional scale (1000km) and more recently on a smaller scale in the vicinity of intensive livestock farms. This work extends the geographical scale of the relationship between foliar N concentration of Calluna vulgaris and other ericaceous shrubs and N deposition with 2 measurement transects, one extending from northern Finland to southern Norway (2000 km) and the other extending from central Sweden to Stockholm, south east Sweden (330 km). Included in the second transect is a region of complex terrain in the Transtrand uplands, where the variation in N deposition with altitude and canopy cover was quantified using 210Pb inventories in organic soil. The relationship between foliar N (FN) and N deposition was shown to increase linearly with N deposition (ND) over the range 0.8% N to 1.4% N according to FN = 0.040ND + 0.793 (r2 = 0.70). The data are entirely consistent with earlier studies which together provide a valuable indicator of critical loads exceedance, the threshold value being approximately 1.5% N, which is equivalent to a N deposition of 20 kg N ha−1 y−1.

foliar N N deposition Calluna vulgaris critical load exceedance Europe 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Allan, S.E. ed.: 1989, Chemical Analysis of Ecological Materials. Blackwell Scientific, Oxford.Google Scholar
  2. Bobbink, & Roelofs, J.: 1996, Water, Air & Soil Pollution 85, 2413.Google Scholar
  3. Brunsting, A.M.H. & Heil, G.W.: 1985, Oikos 44, 23.Google Scholar
  4. EMEP: 1999, Transboundary Acid Deposition in Europe. Summary Report (L. Tarrason & J Schaug eds.) Norwegian Meteorological Institute Report 83.Google Scholar
  5. van der Eerden, L.J., de Vries, W., de Visser, P.H.B., van Dobben, H.F., Steingrover, E.G., Dueck, T.A., van Grinsen, J.J.M., Mohren, G.M.J., Boxman, A.W., Roelofs, J.G.M. & Graveland, J.; 1997, Effects on forest ecosystems. In:.J. Heij & J.W. Erisman (eds) Acid Deposition and its Effects on Terrestrial Ecosystems in the Netherlands, 83–128. Elsevier ScienceGoogle Scholar
  6. Fowler, D., Smith, R.I., Leith, I.D., Crossley, A., Mourne, R., Brandford, D. & Moghaddam, M.: 1998, Water Air and Soil Pollution 105, 459.Google Scholar
  7. Hicks, W.K., Leith, I.D., Woodin, S.J. & Fowler, D.: 2000, Environmental Pollution 107, 367.Google Scholar
  8. Iason, G.R. & Hester, A.J.: 1993, Journal of Ecology 81, 75–80.Google Scholar
  9. Karlsson, P.S.: 1987, Holartic Ecology 10, 114–119.Google Scholar
  10. Moghaddam, M.: 1998, Study of Surface Roughness Effects on Deposition of Atmospheric Aerosol using 210Pb Inventories. PhD Thesis, University of Edinburgh.Google Scholar
  11. Pitcairn, C.E.R., Fowler, D. & Grace, J.: 1991, Changes in species composition of semi-natural vegetation associated with the increase in atmospheric inputs of nitrogen. Institute of Terrestrial Ecology, Edinburgh, UK 80 ppGoogle Scholar
  12. Pitcairn, C.E.R., Fowler, D. & Grace, J.: 1995, Environmental Pollution 88, 193–205Google Scholar
  13. Pitcairn, C.E.R., Leith, I.D., Sheppard, L.J., Sutton, M.A., Fowler, D., Munro, R.C., Tang, S. & Wilson, D.: 1998, Environmental Pollution 102(S1), 41–48.Google Scholar
  14. Poikolainen, J., Lippo, H., Honigisto, Kubin, E., Mikkola, K., Lindgren, M.: 1998, Environmental Pollution 102(S1), 85.Google Scholar
  15. Robertson, R.A. & Davies, G.E.: 1965, Journal of Applied Ecology 2, 249.Google Scholar
  16. Sutton, M.A., Pitcairn, C.E.R. & Fowler, D.: 1993, Advances in Ecological Research 24, 301Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carole E.R. Pitcairn
    • 1
  • Ian D. Leith
    • 1
  • David Fowler
    • 1
  • Ken J. Hargreaves
    • 1
  • Masoud Moghaddam
    • 1
  • Valerie H. Kennedy
    • 2
  • Lennart Granat
    • 3
  1. 1.Centre for Ecology (Edinburgh)Penicuik, Midlothian
  2. 2.Centre for Ecology (Merlewood) Grange-over-SandsCumbriaUK
  3. 3.Department of MeteorologyStockholm UniversityStockholmSweden

Personalised recommendations