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Climate Change and the Ecophysiological Response of Arctic Lichens

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 March 2007

Thomas H. Nash III
Affiliation:
Department of Botany, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287–1601, USA.
Astrid G. Olafsen
Affiliation:
Department of Botany, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287–1601, USA.

Abstract

Under field conditions of optimal water hydration, lichen photosynthesis is primarily light-limited and nitrogen fixation is temperature-limited in both Peltigera canina and Stereocaulon tomentosum at Anaktuvuk Pass, Alaska. Thus, where duration of optimal hydration conditions remains unchanged from the present-day climate, the anticipated temperature increases in the Arctic may enhance nitrogen fixation in these lichens more than carbon gain. Because nitrogen frequently limits productivity in Arctic ecosystems, the results are potentially important to the many Arctic and subarctic ecosystems in which such lichens are abundant.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © British Lichen Society 1995

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