Jenkins, Jennifer (University of Vermont, 590 Main St., Burlington, VT, 05405; Phone: 802-656-2953; Fax: 802-656-2995; Email:


Linking Extensive Monitoring Systems for Complete C Balance Estimation:  A Pilot Test in the Catskill Mountains, NY (USA)


J.C. Jenkins *, P.S. Murdoch, R.A. Birdsey


Methods are fairly well-developed for estimating terrestrial carbon (C) cycling rates at the plot scale for small-scale ecosystem science research.  Techniques also exist to estimate terrestrial and aquatic C cycling rates at large scales, using stream monitoring data, inventory datasets, and/or modeling approaches.  Still undeveloped, though, are techniques for linking the two types of monitoring datasets (terrestrial and aquatic) for complete C cycle estimation at both intensive and extensive study sites.  These techniques are critical to a comprehensive understanding of net C exchange between terrestrial and atmospheric systems.  We report results of a pilot test conducted as part of the interagency Collaborative Environmental Monitoring and Research Initiative (CEMRI) to link terrestrial and aquatic monitoring data for estimation of all components of the C cycle in a forested watershed in the Neversink Basin, in the Catskill Mountains of New York.  Despite the homogeneity of soil conditions and forest types in the watershed, we found substantial differences in soil C stocks, aboveground biomass, annual wood biomass increment, annual litterfall, and modeled soil respiration among stands of similar forest type and similar age.  We also found that downstream export of dissolved and suspended C in streamwater is directly related to the concentration of total suspended solids (TSS) in streamwater, and accounts for a substantial proportion of the C fixed aboveground.  The methods tested here will provide a template for similar efforts to integrate monitoring systems for complete C cycle estimation in regions where extensive monitoring systems exist.