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Article

Biogeochemical Budgets of Nutrients and Metabolism in the Curonian Lagoon (South East Baltic Sea): Spatial and Temporal Variations

1
Marine Research Institute, Klaipeda University, 92294 Klaipeda, Lithuania
2
Department of Chemistry, Life Sciences and Environmental Sustainability, University of Parma, 43124 Parma, Italy
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Michael Twiss
Water 2022, 14(2), 164; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020164
Received: 13 December 2021 / Revised: 4 January 2022 / Accepted: 5 January 2022 / Published: 8 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Ecohydrology)
Estuaries are biogeochemical reactors able to modulate the transfer of energy and matter from the watershed to the coastal zones and to retain or remove large amounts of terrestrially generated nutrients. However, they may switch from nutrient sink to source depending upon interannual variability of the nutrient supply and internal processes driving whole system metabolism (e.g., net autotrophic or heterotrophic). We tested this hypothesis in the Curonian Lagoon, a hypertrophic estuary located in the south east Baltic Sea, following the budget approach developed in the Land-Ocean Interactions in the Coastal Zone (LOICZ) project. Annual budgets for nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and silica (Si) were calculated for the 2013–2015 period. The lagoon was divided in a flushed, nutrient loaded area, and in a confined, less loaded area. The lagoon was always a sink for dissolved inorganic Si and P whereas it was a N sink in the confined area, dominated by denitrification, and a N source in the flushed area, due to dinitrogen (N2) fixation. The net ecosystem metabolism (NEM) indicated that the Curonian Lagoon was mainly autotrophic because of high primary production rates. In this turbid system, low N:P ratio, high summer temperatures, and calm weather conditions support high production of N2-fixing cyanobacteria, suppressing the estuarine N-sink role. View Full-Text
Keywords: LOICZ/FEC; nutrients; sink–source role; net ecosystem metabolism; retention LOICZ/FEC; nutrients; sink–source role; net ecosystem metabolism; retention
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MDPI and ACS Style

Vybernaite-Lubiene, I.; Zilius, M.; Bartoli, M.; Petkuviene, J.; Zemlys, P.; Magri, M.; Giordani, G. Biogeochemical Budgets of Nutrients and Metabolism in the Curonian Lagoon (South East Baltic Sea): Spatial and Temporal Variations. Water 2022, 14, 164. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020164

AMA Style

Vybernaite-Lubiene I, Zilius M, Bartoli M, Petkuviene J, Zemlys P, Magri M, Giordani G. Biogeochemical Budgets of Nutrients and Metabolism in the Curonian Lagoon (South East Baltic Sea): Spatial and Temporal Variations. Water. 2022; 14(2):164. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020164

Chicago/Turabian Style

Vybernaite-Lubiene, Irma, Mindaugas Zilius, Marco Bartoli, Jolita Petkuviene, Petras Zemlys, Monia Magri, and Gianmarco Giordani. 2022. "Biogeochemical Budgets of Nutrients and Metabolism in the Curonian Lagoon (South East Baltic Sea): Spatial and Temporal Variations" Water 14, no. 2: 164. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020164

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