Unimodal response of fish yield to dissolved organic carbon
Article first published online: 27 OCT 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Ecology Letters published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and CNRS.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Volume 17, Issue 1, pages 36–43, January 2014
How to Cite
Ecology Letters (2013) 17: 36–43
- Issue published online: 16 DEC 2013
- Article first published online: 27 OCT 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 24 SEP 2013
- Manuscript Revised: 20 SEP 2013
- Manuscript Received: 4 SEP 2013
- Norwegian Research Council. Grant Numbers: NFR 221410/E40, ES508934
- Brown trout;
- DOC ;
- limiting factors;
- Salmo trutta
Here, we demonstrate a contrasting effect of terrestrial coloured dissolved organic material on the secondary production of boreal nutrient poor lakes. Using fish yield from standardised brown trout gill-net catches as a proxy, we show a unimodal response of lake secondary productivity to dissolved organic carbon (DOC). This suggests a trade-off between positive and negative effects, where the initial increase may hinge upon several factors such as energy subsidising, screening of UV-radiation or P and N load being associated with organic carbon. The subsequent decline in production with further increase in DOC is likely associated with light limitations of primary production. We also show that shallow lakes switch from positive to negative effects at higher carbon loads than deeper lakes. These results underpin the major role of organic carbon for structuring productivity of boreal lake ecosystems.