Peatland Ecology Research Group (PERG)
Université Laval
Chemistry and microbiology

Here is a provincial database for water chemistry and peat for bogs of Quebec. These files contain all the data used in the literature review of Andersen et al. (2011). You can browse these files for information on a region of Quebec or a particular type of bog.

If you own bog chemistry data that could help improve the provincial bank or fill regional gaps, you can send them to us, using the Excel titled additional data form (send to:

).Protocols for sampling water and peat are available on request to


Water chemistry


Additional data

There are important parameters to evaluate the success of the peatland restoration and the return of the fundamental processes of the ecosystem. Among them are physicochemistry and microbiology parameters.


Data on the physical chemistry of water and peat bogs are taken regularly from the very beginning of the restoration (see Wind-Mulder et al. 1996; Price & Waddington 2000; Andersen et al. 2006). An initial study on the microbiology of mined peatlands took place during the 1990s (see Croft et al. 2001).

A more comprehensive study on the physical chemistry and microbiology of a restored bog on a large scale is under way at the Bois-des-Bel peatland,  Québec (see the following project).

Microbiology, biogeochemistry and nutrients cycling 2003

In the particular case of cutover Sphagnum peatlands, the long-term objective of ecological restoration is to bring back the ecosystem to a functional and self-sustainable state. Among other, this means a system where the nutrient cycle is efficient, and where organic matter can accumulate actively. Hence, in a long-term perspective, it is necessary to find a monitoring strategy capable of linking the structural and functional aspects of the ecosystem together, one that would integrate a more dynamic dimension to evaluate success.

During her PhD, Roxane Andersen evaluated the return of these functions in the Bois-des-Bel restored peatland, using different approaches. To begin with, she studied the temporal evolution of chemistry in the peat, the water and the tissues of three plant species (Chamaedaphne calyculata, Sphagnum spp., and Polytrichum strictum). She established that restoration allows a nutrient recharge sufficient to outcome the deficiencies visible in the cutover section, as reflected by plant tissues chemistry.

Then, she characterized the microbial compartment (size, composition and activity) and the physicochemistry in the peat following restoration. The first of two studies showed that restoration augments nutrient quantity, microbial biomass and microbial activity in the surface layers; however, the recovery of the microbial compartment is delayed in comparison with the vegetation, as a consequence of the poor quality of carbon and organic matter in the highly decomposed peat. The second study demonstrated that in anaerobic conditions, restored peat is more similar to non-restored than natural peat in terms of CO2 and CH4 production.

Roxane Andersen during a microbiology experiment in laboratory.

Finally, Roxane Andersen explored the relations linking above-ground vegetation composition, environmental conditions, below-ground microbial structure and decomposition potential. This unique research work revealed that the return of mosses and ericaceous shrubs modifies the structure and the decomposition potential of the microbial community. Moreover, it highlighted that the latter was also greatly influenced by environmental conditions, notably Sphagnum thickness and bulk density, and by the structure of the microbial community.
Project's publication(s) & communication(s)


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