Effect of Grazing Intensity on Soil and Plant δ15N of an Alpine Meadow
Yangong Du1, Xiaowei Guo1, Geng Zhou2, Guangmin Cao1, Yikang Li1
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1Key Laboratory of Adaptation and Evolution of Plateau Botany, Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology,
Chinese Academy of Science, Xining, China, 810008
2Bureau of Weihai Agriculture, Weihai, China, 264200
Submission date: 2016-11-30
Final revision date: 2016-12-15
Acceptance date: 2016-12-20
Online publication date: 2017-04-27
Publication date: 2017-05-26
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2017;26(3):1071–1075
The mechanisms underlying the retention of inorganic N were still not well understood in an alpine meadow on the Tibetan Plateau as well as in other high-altitude meadow sites greatly grazed and disturbed. We conducted field soil and dominant species foliar nitrogen natural abundance of stable isotope ratios (δ15N) under four grazing intensities. It was demonstrated that soil δ15N decreased significantly from 5.83±0.20‰ to 2.17±0.48‰ at 0-10 cm with the elevation of grazing intensity. Grazing reduced the degree of ecosystem N openness. The δ15N value of surface soil was mainly affected by soil total nitrogen. Furthermore, the degree of nitrogen limitation increased with grazing elevation for sedge family and Gramineae family plants.