刊物名称：SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT
卷：566 页码：378-386Nutrient over-enrichment is considered to be one of the causes of coral decline. Increase in traditional fishing in the Xuwen National Coral Reefs Reserve tract (XW) and tourism around the Sanya National Coral Reefs Reserve tract (SY) are causing this coral decline. This study reviews the current state of knowledge of the nutrient status of coastal fringing reefs in South China and evaluates the primary sources of nutrients using stable isotope method. Surveys of seawater nutrients showed that the seawater remained clean in both the XW and SY coastal coral reef areas. Based on the isotopic differences between anthropogenic sewage and naturally occurring aquatic nutrients, the isotopic values of particulate organic matter (POM) and the C/N ratios were successfully used to identify the presence of anthropogenic nutrients in aquatic environments. The δ13C, δ15N and C/N compositions of POM from XW and SY (-21.18 ± 2.11‰, 10.30 ± 5.54‰, and 5.35 ± 0.69 and -20.80 ± 1.34‰, 7.06 ± 3.95‰, and 5.77 ± 2.15, respectively) showed statistically significant variations with the season. The δ13C and δ15N values of POM suggest marine and terrestrial-derived nutrient sources. Organic carbon is a mixture of marine phytoplankton, marine benthic algae and terrestrial-derived plants. The δ15N values suggest terrestrial-derived sewage and upwelling-dominated nitrogen sources. In the presence of natural upwelling and coastal currents, coastal coral reef areas are more vulnerable to the increasing anthropogenic nutrient inputs. Anthropogenic activities might lead to large increases in the nutrient concentrations and could trigger the shift from coral-to-macroalgae-dominated ecosystems, which would ultimately result in the degradation of the coastal coral reef ecosystem. These results provide some understanding of the declining coral reef ecosystem and the importance of conservation areas and coastal coral reef resource management.