Size Class Dependent Relationships between Temperature and Phytoplankton Photosynthesis-Irradiance Parameters in the Atlantic Ocean

Robinson, A, Bouman, HA, Tilstone, GH and Sathyendranath, S 2018 Size Class Dependent Relationships between Temperature and Phytoplankton Photosynthesis-Irradiance Parameters in the Atlantic Ocean. Frontiers in Marine Science, 4 (435), 435. 1, pp.

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Over the past decade, a number of methods have been developed to estimate size-class primary production from either in situ phytoplankton pigment data or remotely-sensed data. In this context, the first objective of this study was to compare two methods of estimating size class specific (micro-, nano-, and pico-phytoplankton) photosynthesis-irradiance (PE) parameters from pigment data. The second objective was to analyse the relationship between environmental variables (temperature, nitrate and PAR) and PE parameters in the different size-classes. A large dataset was used of simultaneous measurements of the PE parameters (n = 1,260) and phytoplankton pigment markers (n = 2,326), from 3 different institutes. There were no significant differences in mean PE parameters of the different size classes between the chemotaxonomic method of Uitz et al. (2008) and the pigment markers and carbon-to-Chl a ratios method of Sathyendranath et al. (2009). For both methods, mean maximum photosynthetic rates (PBm ) for micro-phytoplankton were significantly lower than those for pico-phytoplankton and nano-phytoplankton. The mean light limited slope (�B) for nano-phytoplankton were significantly higher than for the other size taxa. For micro-phytoplankton dominated samples identified using the Sathyendranath et al. (2009) method, both PBm and �B exhibited a significant, positive linear relationship with temperature, whereas for pico-phytoplankton the correlation with temperature was negative. Nano-phytoplankton dominated samples showed a positive correlation between PBm and temperature, whereas for �B and the light saturation parameter (Ek) the correlations were not significant. For the Uitz et al. (2008) method, only micro-phytoplankton PBm , pico-phytoplankton �B, nano- and pico-phytoplankton Ek exhibited significant relationships with temperature. The temperature ranges occupied by the size classes derived using these methods differed. The Uitz et al. (2008) method exhibited a wider temperature range compared to those derived from the Sathyendranath et al. (2009) method. The differences arise from the classification of mixed populations. Based on these patterns, we therefore recommend using the Sathyendranath et al. (2009) method to derive micro-phytoplankton PE parameters at sea water temperatures up to 8◦C during monospecific blooms and the Uitz et al. (2008) method to derive PE parameters of mixed populations over the temperature range from 8 to 18◦C. Both methods exhibited similar relationships between pico-phytoplankton PE parameters and temperatures >18◦C.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Subjects: Biology
Earth Observation - Remote Sensing
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > National Capability categories > NERC Earth Observation Data Acquisition & Analysis Service (NEODAAS)
Depositing User: Gavin Tilstone
Date made live: 10 Feb 2018 11:27
Last Modified: 25 Apr 2020 09:58

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