Water 2013, 5(2), 747-766; doi:10.3390/w5020747
Article

Effects of Timber Harvesting with Best Management Practices on Ecosystem Metabolism of a Low Gradient Stream on the United States Gulf Coastal Plain

1 Southeast Environmental Research Center, Florida International University, Miami, FL 33199, USA 2 School of Renewable Natural Resources, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, 227 Highland Road, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA 3 National Council for Air & Stream Improvement, Inc., P.O. Box 458, Corvallis, OR 97339, USA 4 National Council for Air & Stream Improvement, Inc., 4601 Campus Drive #A-114, Kalamazoo, MI 49008, USA 5 Plum Creek Timber Company, P.O. Box 717, Crossett, AR 71635, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 April 2013; in revised form: 24 May 2013 / Accepted: 29 May 2013 / Published: 13 June 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inorganic Pollution of Water Environment)
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Abstract: Stream metabolism can be used as a measure of freshwater ecosystem health because of its responsiveness to natural and anthropogenic changes. In this study, we used stream metabolic rates to test for the effects of a timber harvest with Louisiana’s current best management practices (BMPs). The study was conducted from 2006 to 2010 in a loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) stand in north-central Louisiana, USA, 45 ha of which was clear cut harvested in the summer of 2007. Dissolved oxygen (DO), water temperature, and stream depth were recorded at a site upstream (serving as a reference) and a site downstream of the harvested area. Using diurnal DO change and an open-system, single-station method at each site, we quantified rates of net ecosystem productivity (NEP), gross primary productivity (GPP), community respiration (CR), and the GPP/CR ratio. The system was predominately heterotrophic, with a GPP/CR ratio of less than one for 82% of the time at the upstream site. No calculated metabolic rate was significantly changed by the timber harvest (two-way ANOVA with interaction; p < 0.001). Overall, the results suggest that timber harvests of similar intensity with Louisiana’s current BMPs may not significantly impact stream biological conditions.
Keywords: stream metabolism; dissolved oxygen; water quality; forestry BMPs; timber harvest; low-gradient headwaters

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MDPI and ACS Style

DaSilva, A.; Xu, Y.J.; Ice, G.; Beebe, J.; Stich, R. Effects of Timber Harvesting with Best Management Practices on Ecosystem Metabolism of a Low Gradient Stream on the United States Gulf Coastal Plain. Water 2013, 5, 747-766.

AMA Style

DaSilva A, Xu YJ, Ice G, Beebe J, Stich R. Effects of Timber Harvesting with Best Management Practices on Ecosystem Metabolism of a Low Gradient Stream on the United States Gulf Coastal Plain. Water. 2013; 5(2):747-766.

Chicago/Turabian Style

DaSilva, Abram; Xu, Y. J.; Ice, George; Beebe, John; Stich, Richard. 2013. "Effects of Timber Harvesting with Best Management Practices on Ecosystem Metabolism of a Low Gradient Stream on the United States Gulf Coastal Plain." Water 5, no. 2: 747-766.

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