The activities of extracellular enzymes are important in understanding decomposition of soil organic matter in wetlands subjecting to drying. The activity of soil extracellular enzymes (β-glucosidase, N-acetylglucosaminidase, and phosphatase), and related physicochemical parameters were monitored in constructed freshwater wetlands during a one-month drying manipulation. Drying increased redox potential and decreased soil water content significantly (P<0.05). Higher content of soil organic matter (P<0.05) and higher concentrations of inorganic N (nitrate, P<0.01; and ammonia, P<0.001) were also observed significantly under drying condition. Soil hydrolase enzyme activities were stimulated significantly (β-glucosidase, P<0.05; N-acetylglucosaminidase, P<0.01; and phosphatase, P<0.001), and a two-phase pattern of enzyme activities was revealed under drying condition. The increase of soil enzyme activities under drying condition was significantly related to soil redox potential (P<0.001). Drying strongly affected soil enzyme activities only when soil water content remained above an optimal level for enzymatic catalysis (higher than 23% w/w), corresponding to redox potentials below 250-300 mV. Our results suggest that, under drying condition, potential enzyme activities may be regulated by redox potential, in respect to soil moisture, and consequently alter nutrient availability in wetlands.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Environmental Science(all)
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)