Modeling the seasonal autochthonous sources of dissolved organic carbon and nitrogen in the upper Chesapeake Bay.

Keller, David and Hood, Raleigh (2011) Modeling the seasonal autochthonous sources of dissolved organic carbon and nitrogen in the upper Chesapeake Bay. Ecological Modelling, 222 (5). pp. 1139-1162. DOI 10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2010.12.014.

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Abstract

In this paper we investigate the seasonal autochthonous sources of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and nitrogen (DON) in the euphotic zone at a station in the upper Chesapeake Bay using a new mass-based ecosystem model. Important features of the model are: (1) carbon and nitrogen are incorporated by means of a set of fixed and varying C:N ratios; (2) dissolved organic matter (DOM) is separated into labile, semi-labile, and refractory pools for both C and N; (3) the production and consumption of DOM is treated in detail; and (4) seasonal observations of light, temperature, nutrients, and surface layer circulation are used to physically force the model. The model reasonably reproduces the mean observed seasonal concentrations of nutrients, DOM, plankton biomass, and chlorophyll a. The results suggest that estuarine DOM production is intricately tied to the biomass concentration, ratio, and productivity of phytoplankton, zooplankton, viruses, and bacteria. During peak spring productivity phytoplankton exudation and zooplankton sloppy feeding are the most important autochthonous sources of DOM. In the summer when productivity peaks again, autochthonous sources of DOM are more diverse and, in addition to phytoplankton exudation, important ones include viral lysis and the decay of detritus. The potential importance of viral decay as a source of bioavailable DOM from within the bulk DOM pool is also discussed. The results also highlight the importance of some poorly constrained processes and parameters. Some potential improvements and remedies are suggested. Sensitivity studies on selected parameters are also reported and discussed.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Biological Oceanography; Food Webs; Biogeochemistry; Dissolved organic matter (DOM) cycling, Dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) cycling, Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) cycling, Marine biogeochemical ecosystem model
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-BM Biogeochemical Modeling
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2010.12.014
ISSN: 0304-3800
Projects: DOMINO, BITMAXII
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2011 07:59
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2017 13:09
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/12600

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