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Article

Microbial Geochemistry Reflecting Sulfur, Iron, Manganese, and Calcium Sources in the San Diego River Watershed, Southern California USA

1
Department of Geological Sciences, San Diego State University, 5500 Campanile Dr., San Diego, CA 92182-1020, USA
2
The San Diego River Park Foundation, 4891 Pacific Highway, Suite 114, San Diego, CA 92110, USA
3
City of San Diego, Storm Water Division, 9370 Chesapeake Dr. Suite 100, San Diego, CA 92123, USA
4
3826 Elkhorn Blvd., North Highlands, CA 95660, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geosciences 2018, 8(12), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8120495
Received: 31 October 2018 / Revised: 5 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Biomineralization)
Microbial populations involved in forming the distinctive precipitates of S, Fe, Mn, and Ca in the San Diego River watershed reflect an interplay between the mineralogy of the rocks in the watershed, sparse rainfall, ground- and surface-water anoxia, and runoff of high sulfate, treated imported water. In the sparsely developed headwaters, the Temescal Creek tributary emerges from pyrite-bearing metamorphic rocks, and thus exhibits both an oxidized Fe and reduced S. In the middle reaches, the river moves through developed land where treated, imported high sulfate Colorado River water enters from urban runoff. Mast Park surrounded by caliche-bearing sedimentary rocks is a site where marl is precipitating. Cobbles in riffles along the river are coated black with Mn oxide. When the river encounters deep-seated volcanic bedrock, it wells up to precipitate both Fe and Mn oxides at the Old Mission Dam. Then, directly flowing through caliche-laced sedimentary rocks, Birchcreek tributary precipitates tufa. Further downstream at a site under a bridge that blocks sunlight, a sulfuretum sets up when the river is deoxygenated. Such a rich geochemistry results in activity of iron and manganese oxidizing bacteria, sulfur oxidizers and reducers, and cyanobacteria precipitating calcareous marl and tufa. View Full-Text
Keywords: iron bacteria; sulfate reduction; sulfuretum; sulfur oxidizing bacteria; tufa; marl; manganese oxidizing bacteria iron bacteria; sulfate reduction; sulfuretum; sulfur oxidizing bacteria; tufa; marl; manganese oxidizing bacteria
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MDPI and ACS Style

Robbins, E.I.; Quigley-Raymond, S.; Lai, M.; Fried, J. Microbial Geochemistry Reflecting Sulfur, Iron, Manganese, and Calcium Sources in the San Diego River Watershed, Southern California USA. Geosciences 2018, 8, 495. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8120495

AMA Style

Robbins EI, Quigley-Raymond S, Lai M, Fried J. Microbial Geochemistry Reflecting Sulfur, Iron, Manganese, and Calcium Sources in the San Diego River Watershed, Southern California USA. Geosciences. 2018; 8(12):495. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8120495

Chicago/Turabian Style

Robbins, Eleanora I., Shannon Quigley-Raymond, Ming Lai, and Janae Fried. 2018. "Microbial Geochemistry Reflecting Sulfur, Iron, Manganese, and Calcium Sources in the San Diego River Watershed, Southern California USA" Geosciences 8, no. 12: 495. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8120495

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