912301 Biogeochemistry of forest ecosystems

Lecture and seminar
Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Offered in
Wintersemester 2022/23
Languages of instruction


Because chemicals tend to circulate from nonliving components to living organisms and back to the nonliving environment, the pathways habe been termed biogeochemical cycles. This course focuses on continuous exchange (gain or lose) of matter and energy between ecosystems and the biosphere as a whole, which is vital to the maintenance of the system. The flow of energy, water and nutrients across the ecosystem´s boundaries are considered to be inputs and outputs, which are transported by meteorologic, geologic, and biologic vectors. Meteorologic inputs, consisting of wind-borne particulate matter, dissolved substances in rain and snow, aerosols and gases as well as geologic fluxes (dissolved and particulate matter transported by surface and subsurface drainage, and the mass movement of colluvial materials) will be discussed in details. The biogeochemical cycling of elements between the compartments atmosphere, living and dead organic matter, available nutrients and primary and secondary minerals of different forest ecosystems will be described.

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

Imparting knowledge on nutrient cycling between living and dead components of ecosystems. Instructions in measuring input and output of elements and nutrient budgets of forest ecosystems.
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.