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Impacts of twenty years of experimental warming on soil carbon, nitrogen, moisture and soil mites across alpine/subarctic tundra communities

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-11-22, 21:17 authored by Juha M. Alatalo, Annika K. Jägerbrand, Jaanis Juhanson, Anders Michelsen, Peter Ľuptáčik

High-altitude and alpine areas are predicted to experience rapid and substantial increases in future temperature, which may have serious impacts on soil carbon, nutrient and soil fauna. Here we report the impact of 20 years of experimental warming on soil properties and soil mites in three contrasting plant communities in alpine/subarctic Sweden. Long-term warming decreased juvenile oribatid mite density, but had no effect on adult oribatids density, total mite density, any major mite group or the most common species. Long-term warming also caused loss of nitrogen, carbon and moisture from the mineral soil layer in mesic meadow, but not in wet meadow or heath or from the organic soil layer. There was a significant site effect on the density of one mite species, Oppiella neerlandica, and all soil parameters. A significant plot-scale impact on mites suggests that small-scale heterogeneity may be important for buffering mites from global warming. The results indicated that juvenile mites may be more vulnerable to global warming than adult stages. Importantly, the results also indicated that global warming may cause carbon and nitrogen losses in alpine and tundra mineral soils and that its effects may differ at local scale.

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Published in: Scientific Reports
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  • English


Springer Science and Business Media LLC

Publication Year

  • 2017

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  • Qatar University

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