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Seasonal, daily and diurnal variations in the stable carbon isotope composition of carbon dioxide respired by tree trunks in a deciduous oak forest

Abstract : The stable C isotope composition (delta13C) of CO2 respired by trunks was examined in a mature temperate deciduous oak forest (Quercus petraea). Month-to-month, day-to-day and diurnal, measurements were made to determine the range of variations at different temporal scales. Trunk growth and respiration rates were assessed. Phloem tissue was sampled and was analysed for total organic matter and soluble sugar 13C composition. The CO2 respired by trunk was always enriched in 13C relative to the total organic matter, sometimes by as much as 5 per thousand. The delta13C of respired CO2 exhibited a large seasonal variation (3.3 per thousand), with a relative maximum at the beginning of the growth period. The lowest values occurred in summer when the respiration rates were maximal. After the cessation of radial trunk growth, the respired CO2 delta13C values showed a progressive increase, which was linked to a parallel increase in soluble sugar content in the phloem tissue (R=0.95; P<0.01). At the same time, the respiration rates declined. This limited use of the substrate pool might allow the discrimination during respiration to be more strongly expressed. The late-season increase in CO2 delta13C might also be linked to a shift from recently assimilated C to reserves. At the seasonal scale, CO2 delta13C was negatively correlated with air temperature (R=-0.80; P<0.01). The diurnal variation sometimes reached 3 per thousand, but the range and the pattern depended on the period within the growing season. Contrary to expectations, diurnal variations were maximal in winter and spring when the leaves were missing or not totally functional. By contrast to the seasonal scale, these diurnal variations were not related to air temperature or sugar content. Our study shows that seasonal and diurnal variations of respired 13C exhibited a similar large range but were probably explained by different mechanisms.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-03168089
Contributor : Florence Maunoury-Danger <>
Submitted on : Friday, March 12, 2021 - 4:37:58 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, June 17, 2021 - 3:50:13 AM

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Florence Maunoury-Danger, Daniel Berveiller, Caroline Lelarge, Jean-Yves Pontailler, Laurent Vanbostal, et al.. Seasonal, daily and diurnal variations in the stable carbon isotope composition of carbon dioxide respired by tree trunks in a deciduous oak forest. Oecologia, Springer Verlag, 2007, 151 (2), pp.268-279. ⟨10.1007/s00442-006-0592-z⟩. ⟨hal-03168089⟩

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