Characteristics of Phytoplankton as Monitors of the Physical Environment,
BIGELOW LAB FOR OCEAN SCIENCES WEST BOOTHBAY HARBOR ME
Pagination or Media Count:
The goal of this project was to understand the responses of phytoplankton to variations in irradiance so as to describe how physiological and optical characteristics of phytoplankton reflect physical forcing and particle dynamics. The application of this understanding is in using optical measurements to describe physical-biological coupling in the sea. The objectives of the program were to interpret measurements of fluorescence, beam attenuation, and photosynthesis versus irradiance P-I in terms of primary productivity, photoadaptation and particle dynamics in the euphotic zone. The context was photic variability induced by vertical mixing. Consideration was also given to the artifacts of experimental work at sea, including those associated with static bottle incubations that do not mimic vertical mixing in nature. Effort was expended principally on novel analysis of previously-collected data from laboratory experiments and field sampling. Some collaborative experiments were also performed, and measurements were made during a multidisciplinary cruise to study a Gulf Stream meander. In addition, the principal investigator acted as co-chair of and contributor to an international scientific symposium to examine the controversial hypothesis that iron limits the growth of phytoplankton in large parts of the ocean. This contract also supported a continuing and productive collaboration with Marlon R. Lewis of Dalhousie University.
- EUPHOTIC ZONES
- GULF STREAM