Ecosystem Ecology and Geochemistry of Cuatro Cienegas

How to Survive in an Extremely Oligotrophic Site

  • Felipe García-Oliva
  • James Elser
  • Valeria Souza

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Felipe García-Oliva, Yunuen Tapia-Torres, Cristina Montiel-Gonzalez, Yareni Perroni-Ventura
    Pages 1-13
  3. Nguyen E. López-Lozano, Ana E. Escalante, Alberto Barrón-Sandoval, Teresa Perez-Carbajal
    Pages 15-29
  4. Yunuen Tapia-Torres, Patricia Vélez, Felipe García-Oliva, Luis E. Eguiarte, Valeria Souza
    Pages 43-53
  5. Icoquih Zapata-Peñasco, Santiago Bautista-López, Valeria Souza
    Pages 99-107
  6. Jorge Valdivia-Anistro, Luis E. Eguiarte, Valeria Souza
    Pages 109-122
  7. Eric K. Moody, Evan W. Carson, Jessica R. Corman, Hector Espinosa-Pérez
    Pages 141-152
  8. Yunuen Tapia-Torres, Pamela Chávez Ortiz, Natali Hernández-Becerra, Alberto Morón Cruz, Ofelia Beltrán, Felipe García-Oliva
    Pages 153-161
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 163-167

About this book


Carbon (C), Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorus (P) are three of the most important elements used to build living beings, and their uptake from the environment is consequently essential for all organisms. Photosynthesis is the process in which plants absorb atmospheric C as they grow and convert it to biomass. However, plants acquire N and P only when these are available in the soil solution, which makes these elements the most limiting nutrients in plant growth and productivity in most ecosystems. When plant residues and roots decompose, the C, N and P they contain is transformed primarily into soil organic matter (SOM) or C and N can release to the atmosphere. Recent interest on the global C, N and P cycles has focused attention on the different proportion of terrestrial C, N and P stored in different ecosystem pools. Cuatro Cienegas represents an exceptional place, since the plants are not the base of the food web, they are the microbial community, that recycle the elements essential for life. In this book we describe how this is an analog of early Earth.


autotrophy photosynthesis oligotrophic environments extreme environments carbon cycling nitrogen cycling phosphorus cycling

Editors and affiliations

  • Felipe García-Oliva
    • 1
  • James Elser
    • 2
  • Valeria Souza
    • 3
  1. 1.Instituto de Investigaciones en Ecosistemas y SustentabilidadUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMoreliaMexico
  2. 2.Flathead Lake Biological StationUniversity of MontanaPolsonUSA
  3. 3.Institute of EcologyUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Biomedical and Life Sciences
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-95854-5
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-95855-2
  • Series Print ISSN 2523-7284
  • Series Online ISSN 2523-7292
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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