electrons acetate 1 +

methanogenic bacteria methane

Figure 6.8 Stimulation of productivity in an anoxic mud following the introduction of sulfate by a lugworm.

newly energized community as it passes through, enriching the mud further before passing from the gut as a fecal cast. Metabolism continues even in the fecal casts—indeed, these are the most productive parts of the entire system. The point, though, is that the lug-worm is not getting something for nothing. It is, rather, using its burrow as a parallel circuit for electron flow in the reducing environments of anoxic muds.

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