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Microbial Ecology of Methanogens and Methanotrophs

Elsevier Science & Technology
DOI: 10.1016/s0065-2113(07)96005-8
  • Agricultural Science
  • Biology
  • Ecology


Rice agriculture feeds about a third of the world's population. However, rice fields are also an important source in the global budget of the greenhouse gas methane. The emission of methane from flooded rice fields is the result of the activity of methanogenic archaea that produce the methane and of methanotrophic bacteria that oxidize part of it, so that the ecology of these two physiological groups of microorganisms is key for the understanding of methane cycling in rice fields and for possible mitigation of emission from this important agro-ecosystem. In this chapter I will describe the ecology of methanogens and methanotrophs and will give examples where production and emission of methane on the field scale can be understood on the basis of processes on the microscale.

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