Phytoplankton dynamics in relation to seasonal variability and upwelling and relaxation patterns at the mouth of Ria de Aveiro West Iberian Margin over a four-year periodReport as inadecuate




Phytoplankton dynamics in relation to seasonal variability and upwelling and relaxation patterns at the mouth of Ria de Aveiro West Iberian Margin over a four-year period - Download this document for free, or read online. Document in PDF available to download.

From June 2004 to December 2007, samples were weekly collected at a fixed station located at the mouth of Ria de Aveiro West Iberian Margin. We examined the seasonal and inter-annual fluctuations in composition and community structure of the phytoplankton in relation to the main environmental drivers and assessed the influence of the oceanographic regime, namely changes in frequency and intensity of upwelling events, over the dynamics of the phytoplankton assemblage. The samples were consistently handled and a final subset of 136 OTUs taxa with relative abundance > 0.01% was subsequently submitted to various multivariate analyses. The phytoplankton assemblage showed significant changes at all temporal scales but with an overriding importance of seasonality over longer- inter-annual or shorter-term fluctuations upwelling-related. Sea-surface temperature, salinity and maximum upwelling index were retrieved as the main driver of seasonal change. Seasonal signal was most evident in the fluctuations of chlorophyll a concentration and in the high turnover from the winter to spring phytoplankton assemblage. The seasonal cycle of production and succession was disturbed by upwelling events known to disrupt thermal stratification and induce changes in the phytoplankton assemblage. Our results indicate that both the frequency and intensity of physical forcing were important drivers of such variability, but the outcome in terms of species composition was highly dependent on the available local pool of species and the timing of those events in relation to the seasonal cycle. We conclude that duration, frequency and intensity of upwelling events, which vary seasonally and inter-annually, are paramount for maintaining long-term phytoplankton diversity likely by allowing unstable coexistence and incorporating species turnover at different scales. Our results contribute to the understanding of the complex mechanisms of coastal phytoplankton dynamics in relation to changing physical forcing which is fundamental to improve predictability of future prospects under climate change.



Author: Tânia Vidal , António José Calado, Maria Teresa Moita, Marina R. Cunha

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/



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