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Biomass Production and Chemistry 

General Description

Biomass measurements near Toolik Lake, Alaska were first made in 1982. Since then additional measurements have been made, including harvesting several times through the growing season. The harvests have included four different tundra types (heath, wet sedge, acidic and non acidic mesic tussock, shrub), both treated and untreated plots, woody stem biomass, and across several different sites. Per cent carbon nitrogen and phosphorus were also measured for several of the harvests. See table 1.


  • 1982gsasbm - Biomass in wet sedge tundra near the Atigun River crossing of the Dalton Highway, North Slope AK. .There were three harvests; Late May-early June; Late July-early August; Late August-early September. See Shaver and Chapin (Ecological Monographs, 61, 1991 pp.1-31.

  • 1982gsthbm - Biomass in heath tundra near Toolik Lake North Slope AK (68 degrees 38N, 149derees 34W). .There were three harvests;Late May-early June; Late July-early August; Late August-early September. See Shaver and Chapin (Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.

  • 1982gstrbm - Biomass in shrub tundra near Toolik Lake North Slope AK (68 degrees 38N, 149derees 34W). .There were three harvests;Late May-early June; Late July-early August; Late August-early September. See Shaver and Chapin (Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.

  • 1982gsttbm - Biomass in tussock tundra near Toolik Lake North Slope AK (68 degrees 38N, 149derees 34W). There were three harvests;Late May-early June; Late July-early August; Late August-early September. See Shaver and Chapin (Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.

  • 1982_2000gs81tusbm - Above ground plant biomass and leaf area were measured in a moist acidic tussock tundra experimental site. The plots were set up in 1981 and have been harvested in periodical (See Shaver and Chapin Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31. Mack, et al, Nature 2004 431:440-443) This file contains the biomass numbers for each harvested quadrat and per cent carbon and nitrogen summaries for harvests through 2000. Leaf area data is presented in other data files (see http://ecosystems.mbl.edu/arc).

  • 1983gsttbm - Biomass in tussock tundra experimental plots near Toolik Lake, North Slope, AK (68 degrees 38N, 149derees 34W). There were five harvests in 1983. This file is the May 21-22, 1983 harvest.

  • 1984gsttbm - Above ground plant biomass was measured in a tussock tundra experimental site. The plots were set up in 1981 and have been harvested in previous years (See Shaver and Chapin Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.) This file is the July 26-27, 1984 harvest of the controls and nitrogen + phosphorus treatments.

  • 1988gssabm - Biomass was harvested from six vegetation types along a toposequence on a floodplain terrace of the Sagavanirktok River in the northern foothills of the Brooks Range , Alaska (68degrees 46' N, 148 degrees 51' W 50m). The vegetation sites are; upland tussock tundra, "hilltop heath", a "hillslope shrub-lupine", a "footslope Equisetum", a wet sedge tundra, and a "riverside willow".

  • 1989gsttbm - Above ground plant biomass was measured in a tussock tundra experimental site. The plots were set up in 1981 and have been harvested in previous years (See Shaver and Chapin Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.) This file contains the biomass numbers for each harvested quadrat.

  • 1992gsttbm - Quadrats (20cm x 20cm squares) along a line (block) were collected for plant biomass in mesic tussock tundra. In the lab each quadrat was separated into individual species, new and old aboveground and belowground biomass. Two harvests were completed, June and a late July. These are control plots from an experiment setup for a 15N experiment.

  • 1993gsttbm - Quadrats (20cm x 20cm squares) along a line (block) were collected for plant biomass in mesic acidic tussock tundra. Each quadrat was separated into individual species, new and old aboveground and belowground biomass. The harvest occurred in early July to coincide with a 15N plant and soil harvest.

  • 1994gsbflx - Ecosystem-level Carbon dioxide fluxes were measured in two long-term experimental wet sedge tundra sites near Toolik Lake, AK. Experimental treatments at each site included factorial NxP, greenhouse and shade house and were begun in 1985 (Sag site) or in 1988 (Toolik sites). Fluxes were measured on quadrats that were later sampled for biomass and leaf area.

  • 1994gswsbmnp - Plant biomass, leaf area, carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus were measured in three wet sedge tundra experimental sites. Treatments at each site included factorial NxP and at the Toolik sites greenhouse and shade house. Treatments started in 1985 (Sag site) and in 1988 (Toolik sites).

  • 1995gsbnana - This data file contains the data on weights and lengths from retrospective growth analysis of different stem age classes of Betula nana ramets from the LTER Nutrient and Warming manipulations in tussock tundra at Toolik Lake.

  • 1995gsttbm - Above ground plant biomass and leaf area were measured in a tussock tundra experimental site. The plots were set up in 1981 and have been harvested in previous years (See Shaver and Chapin Ecological Monographs, 61, 1991 pp.1-31).

  • 1996gshtbm - Plant biomass in arctic heath experimental plots. Plots set up in 1989 with nitrogen, phosphorus, nitrogen plus phosphorus and a shade treatment were harvested for above ground biomass. Root mass was also measured on a smaller subsample.

  • 1997lg3sbm - Quadrats were harvested for aboveground biomass from eight plots within a tussock, watertrack, and snowbed community at 3 sites - acidic tundra near Toolik (site of acidic LTER plots), nonacidic tundra near Toolik Lake(site of non-acidic LTER plots), and acidic tundra near Sagwon. All vascular species were sorted, divided into new and old growth, dried, and weighed. Lichens were separated by genus in all quadrats. In half of the quadrats (n=4), mosses were separated by species. Moss and lichen data are presented by species elsewhere (see 97lgmosslichen.txt).

  • 1997lgrarespbm - A harvest was conducted to determine productivity of rare species not found in at least 4 quadrats per site in a separate small quadrat aboveground biomass harvest (see 97lg3sbm.txt). Harvests occurred in a tussock, watertrack, and snowbed community at 3 sites - acidic tundra near Toolik (site of acidic LTER plots), nonacidic tundra near Toolik Lake(site of non-acidic LTER plots), and acidic tundra near Sagwon. Moss and lichen data are presented by species elsewhere (see 97lgmosslichen).

  • 1997mwKupTranBiomas - 1997 measurements of Leaf area, foliar C and N for 14 sites along a transect down the Kuparuk River basin, North Slope, Alaska.

  • 1998gsttbm - Five or six quadrats (20cm x 20cm squares) along a line (block) were collected for plant biomass in mesic tussock tundra. In the lab each quadrat was separated into individual species, new and old aboveground and belowground biomass.

  • 1999gsexclosbm - Above ground plant and below ground stem biomass was measured in Arctic LTER tussock tundra experimental small mammal exclosures. Treatments included Control, Nitrogen plus Phosphorus with both fenced and unfenced plots. In addition a moist non-acidic tussock tundra site was harvested. Leaf areas were also measured for each quadrat but are in a separate file.

  • 1999gsexclosla - Leaf areas were measured on quadrats harvested in Arctic LTER tussock tundra experimental small mammal exclosures. Treatments included Control, Nitrogen plus Phosphorus with both fenced and unfenced plots. In addition a moist non-acidic tussock tundra site was harvested. Biomass was also measured for each quadrat but is in a separate file.

  • 1999SHleafnut - Foliar nutrients (N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Al) for dominant species on moist acidic and non-acidic tundra, Arctic LTER, Toolik Field Station , Alaska, 1999.

  • 1999SHretrans - Foliar and litter nutrients and retranslocation efficiencies (N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Al) for dominant species on moist acidic and non-acidic tundra, Arctic LTER, Toolik Field Station , Alaska, 1999.

  • 2000gsla - Leaf area for select species was measured in arctic tundra experimental sites from late June into early August. Measurements were made in acidic and non acidic tussock tundra and in shrub tundra in control and fertilized plots.

  • 2000gsttbm - Above ground plant biomass and leaf area were measured in a tussock tundra experimental site. The plots were set up in 1981 and have been harvested in previous years (See Shaver and Chapin Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991 pp.1-31.) This file contains the biomass numbers for each harvested quadrat and per cent carbon and nitrogen summaries for control and fertilized plots. Leaf area data is in 2000gsttLA

  • 2000lgshttbm - Aboveground plant and belowground stem biomass were measured in moist acidic and moist non-acidic tussock tundra experimental plots. Treatments at the acidic site include control and nitrogen (N) plus phosphorus (P) amendments; treatments at the non-acidic site include N, P, N+P, greenhouse warming, and greenhouse+N+P.

  • 2000lgshttcn - Percent carbon, percent nitrogen, del13C and del15N were measured from above ground plant and belowground stem biomass samples from experimental plots in moist acidic and moist non-acidic tundra. Biomass data are in 2000lgshttbm.dat.

  • 2001gswsbm_n - Biomass, nitrogen and carbon of plants in the Arctic LTER experimental wet sedge tundra experimental sites, 2001, Toolik Lake, Alaska.. Treatments at each site included factorial NxP, greenhouse and shade house and were begun in 1985 (Sag site) or in 1988 (Toolik sites).

  • 2001lgshttbm - Above ground plant and belowground stem biomass was measured in moist acidic and non-acidic tussock tundra experimental sites. Treatments sampled were control plots and plots amended with nitrogen and phosphorus.

  • 2001lgshttcn - Percent carbon and percent nitrogen were measured from above ground plant and belowground stem biomass samples from experimental plots in moist acidic and moist non-acidic tundra. Biomass data are in 2001lgshttbm.dat.

  • 2002gsttbm - Above ground plant and below ground stem biomass was measured in the Arctic LTER acidic tussock tundra experimental plots. Treatments included control, nitrogen plus phosphorus amended plots for either 6 or 13 years and vole exclosure plots with or without amends of nitrogen and phosphorus.

  • 20032005gsimplant - Changes in total C and N, d13C and d15N, C:N ratio in green leaves and parts of mosses (for sphagnum, both red and green tips were included) over time since 15NH4 addition in Imnavait watershed.

  • 2006lgdhbmcn - Above ground plant and below ground stem biomass, percent nitrogen, and percent carbon were measured in the Arctic LTER dry heath tundra experimental plots. Treatments included control, and nitrogen and phosphorus amended plots for 10 years, and exclosure plots with and without added nitrogen and phosphorus.

  • 2006lgmatbmcn - Above ground plant and below ground stem biomass, percent nitrogen, and percent carbon were measured in the Arctic LTER moist acidic tundra experimental plots. Treatments included control, and nitrogen and phosphorus amended plots for 10 years, and exclosure plots with and without added nitrogen and phosphorus.

Please contact arc_im@mbl.edu with questions, comments, or for technical assistance regarding this web site.