Uptake of Dissolved Sulfide by Spartina alterniflora: Evidence from Natural Sulfur Isotope Abundance Ratios

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Science  07 May 1982:
Vol. 216, Issue 4546, pp. 633-635
DOI: 10.1126/science.216.4546.633


The difference in the stable sulfur isotope ratios of sulfate and sulfide in marsh pore water was used to verify the uptake of hydrogen sulfide by the salt marsh cordgrass Spartina alterniflora in a North Carolina salt marsh. Most of the plant sulfur derived from pore-water sulfide was recovered as sulfate, an indication that the sulfide had been oxidized within the plant. The analysis of the sulfur isotope ratios of other coastal halophytes may be a useful technique for determining whether sulfide is taken up by plants in saline wetlands.

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