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Zhao, Y. ., Texas A&M University , Galveston, USA, claire.zhy@tamu.edu
McInnes, A. ., Texas A&M University , Galveston, USA, mcinness@tamug.edu
Jiang, Y. L., Texas A&M University , Galveston, USA, jiangy@tamug.edu
Li, B. ., Texas A&M University , College Station, USA, acelibo@tamu.edu
Bianchi, T. ., Texas A&M University , College Station, USA, tbianchi@tamu.edu
DiMarco, S. ., Texas A&M University , College Station, , sdimarco@tamu.edu
Quigg, A. ., Texas A&M University , Galveston, USA, quigga@tamug.edu

DIEL VARIATIONS OF PHYTOPLANKTON PRODUCTIVITY AND PHYSIOLOGY IN THE NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO: INFLUENCE OF RIVERINE INPUTS VERSUS OPEN WATERS.

As the one of the world’s top 10 rivers,the Mississippi River system provides up to 90% of the freshwater load into the Gulf of Mexico. Most often times, the importance of the Atchafalaya River system is overlooked in studies of processes occurring in the Northern part of the Gulf. The objective of this study was to investigate the importance of forcing factors (nutrients, light) on phytoplankton productivity and physiology over the course of a diel cycle in locations adjacent to and in river plumes relative to those further offshore. Research cruises were conducted in April and August 2010 and 2011 along the Louisiana coastline. Traditional C14 and chlorophyll biomass measurements were conducted in four 24-hour stations. New methods conducted by Fluorescence Induction and Relaxation (FIRe) System were also applied to indicate photosynthetic physiology (Fv/Fm, σ PSII, p and tau). In April, highest phytoplankton productivity and photosynthetic efficiency are fueled by increased nutrient inputs by large riverine freshwater flow while in August, improved water clarity and benthic regeneration of nutrients appears to be the dominant drivers.

Poster presentation

Session #:127
Date: 2/20/2012
Time: 10:30 - 12:30
Location: Poster/Exhibit Hall

Presentation is given by student: Yes

PosterID: A0576