In the face of global and local issues, such as eutrophication of surface waters, loss of biodiversity and expected global warming, there is an increasing attempt to conserve and restore wetlands in order to re-establish their natural functions. As a result of prior soil subsidence, shallow lakes are often formed after rewetting. These newly formed shallow lakes with a highly degraded
peat substrate are characteristically eutrophic and show high mobilization of nutrients (phosphate and ammonium) and dissolved organic carbon. Furthermore, extremely high methane emissions from rewetted fens have been observed. We assume that the significantly increased supply of oxidizing substances, the greater availability of OM as electron donors as well as the lack of inhibiting substances like polyphenols might explain those phenomena. The main objective of this project is to increase our understanding of matter turnover in those novel ecosystems. Based on our findings we might improve our predictions regrading the restoration of degraded peatlands.