Sedimentation of particulate matter during a phytoplankton spring bloom in relation to the hydrographical regime.

Smetacek, V., von Bröckel, Klaus, Zeitzschel, Bernd and Zenk, Walter (1978) Sedimentation of particulate matter during a phytoplankton spring bloom in relation to the hydrographical regime. Marine Biology, 47 (3). pp. 211-226. DOI 10.1007/BF00541000.

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Data presented and discussed here were collected continuously during April/May 1975 in the Bornholm Basin of the Baltic Sea. Sedimentation rates of particulate matter were recorded with 5 multisample sediment traps from different depths in the water column at 2 positions 170 km apart. Current meter data collected during the same period and depths indicated that the positions remained hydrographically distinct during the investigation. Particulate matter from the euphotic zone including diatom cells formed the bulk of the material collected by all traps. This flux of organic particles to the bottom was unimpeded by the strong density stratification present in the water column. The upper traps always collected less material than lower ones. This paradox has been ascribed to diminishing current speeds with depth, concomitant with an increase in sinking rates of phytoplankton and phytodetritus. Both factors influence the sampling efficiency of sediment traps, which are thought to have underestimated actual sedimentation rates here. A time lag of 2 to 3 weeks in bloom development seemed responsible for the characteristic differences between the two positions. The phase of major sedimentation at one position covered about 18 days, and a distinct sequence in the composition of the material collected by the 6 glasses of each trap indicated phases of a progressively deteriorating phytoplankton population in the water column contributing the particulate material. A total of 6.2 g C m-2 in 34 days was recorded at this station. Apart from a trap situated in an oxygen deficient layer which collected 0.44 g C m-2 of zooplankton corpses, zooplankton mortality was overestimated by the traps. Large-scale sedimencation of “fresh” organic matter produced by the spring bloom is probably a regular feature in areas with low over-wintering zooplankton populations and, as such, possibly has a direct stimulatory effect on growth and reproduction of the benthos.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: OceanRep > Institute for Marine Science Kiel
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-BI Biological Oceanography
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-PO Physical Oceanography
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1007/BF00541000
ISSN: 0025-3162
Date Deposited: 10 May 2016 13:26
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2019 20:34

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