Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean)

D.J.S. Montagnes, J. Allen, L. Brown, C. Bulit, R. Davidson, S. Fielding, M. Heath, N.P. Holliday, J. Rasmussen, R. Sanders, J.J. Waniek, D. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study focuses on a large region of the open ocean where we predict that microzooplankton significantly influence foodweb structure over much of the year. The Irminger Sea exhibits low primary production that is generally poor for copepod production; in such waters, ciliates and other microzooplankton are major grazers of primary production and contribute significantly to the diets of holo- and mero-mesozooplankton. Surface plankton samples were collected during an extensive survey across the basin and along one transect at several depths, over 3 seasons (winter, spring, summer), but not including the spring bloom. Microzooplankton and phytoplankton samples were fixed with Lugol’s solution and microscopically enumerated for species abundance; biomass was determined from cell volumes. Basin-scale distributions of abundance, biomass, and production were examined by geostatistical and multidimensional scaling methods. Dominance of the <10 µm phytoplankton suggests that this should be a microzooplankton-dominated food web. Ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates are abundant in terms of numbers and biomass; heterotrophic dinoflagellates are more abundant than ciliates, but are less dominant in terms of biomass. Using ciliates as a proxy for all microzooplankton, we suggest that there are seasonal patterns in occurrence, and there is no basin-scale patchiness related to hydrographic features. We suggest that ciliate production is sufficient to account for the removal of 15 to 30% of the <10 µm primary production. If heterotrophic dinoflagellates were included in these estimates, removal may be doubled (i.e. 30 to 60%). We therefore contend that microzooplankton are major phytoplankton consumers in the system and should be carefully parameterised in models of this region.


LanguageEnglish
Pages101-115
Number of pages15
JournalMarine Ecology Progress Series
Volume411
Early online date29 Jul 2010
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Fingerprint

ciliate
Atlantic Ocean
Ciliophora
dinoflagellate
ocean
primary production
primary productivity
phytoplankton
biomass
basins
basin
patchiness
open ocean
food webs
food web
plankton
Copepoda
algal bloom
transect
oceans

Keywords

  • ciliates
  • biomass
  • picoplankton
  • nanoplankton
  • ciliates
  • food web
  • biomass nanoplankton

Cite this

Montagnes, D. J. S., Allen, J., Brown, L., Bulit, C., Davidson, R., Fielding, S., ... Wilson, D. (2011). Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean). Marine Ecology Progress Series, 411, 101-115. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps08646
Montagnes, D.J.S. ; Allen, J. ; Brown, L. ; Bulit, C. ; Davidson, R. ; Fielding, S. ; Heath, M. ; Holliday, N.P. ; Rasmussen, J. ; Sanders, R. ; Waniek, J.J. ; Wilson, D. / Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean). In: Marine Ecology Progress Series. 2011 ; Vol. 411. pp. 101-115.
@article{8ae14d051073471eb5c777b196365fb4,
title = "Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean)",
abstract = "This study focuses on a large region of the open ocean where we predict that microzooplankton significantly influence foodweb structure over much of the year. The Irminger Sea exhibits low primary production that is generally poor for copepod production; in such waters, ciliates and other microzooplankton are major grazers of primary production and contribute significantly to the diets of holo- and mero-mesozooplankton. Surface plankton samples were collected during an extensive survey across the basin and along one transect at several depths, over 3 seasons (winter, spring, summer), but not including the spring bloom. Microzooplankton and phytoplankton samples were fixed with Lugol’s solution and microscopically enumerated for species abundance; biomass was determined from cell volumes. Basin-scale distributions of abundance, biomass, and production were examined by geostatistical and multidimensional scaling methods. Dominance of the <10 µm phytoplankton suggests that this should be a microzooplankton-dominated food web. Ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates are abundant in terms of numbers and biomass; heterotrophic dinoflagellates are more abundant than ciliates, but are less dominant in terms of biomass. Using ciliates as a proxy for all microzooplankton, we suggest that there are seasonal patterns in occurrence, and there is no basin-scale patchiness related to hydrographic features. We suggest that ciliate production is sufficient to account for the removal of 15 to 30{\%} of the <10 µm primary production. If heterotrophic dinoflagellates were included in these estimates, removal may be doubled (i.e. 30 to 60{\%}). We therefore contend that microzooplankton are major phytoplankton consumers in the system and should be carefully parameterised in models of this region.",
keywords = "ciliates, biomass, picoplankton , nanoplankton, ciliates , food web, biomass nanoplankton",
author = "D.J.S. Montagnes and J. Allen and L. Brown and C. Bulit and R. Davidson and S. Fielding and M. Heath and N.P. Holliday and J. Rasmussen and R. Sanders and J.J. Waniek and D. Wilson",
note = "Title has been changed and small changes to authors",
year = "2011",
doi = "10.3354/meps08646",
language = "English",
volume = "411",
pages = "101--115",
journal = "Marine Ecology Progress Series",
issn = "0171-8630",

}

Montagnes, DJS, Allen, J, Brown, L, Bulit, C, Davidson, R, Fielding, S, Heath, M, Holliday, NP, Rasmussen, J, Sanders, R, Waniek, JJ & Wilson, D 2011, 'Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean)' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol. 411, pp. 101-115. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps08646

Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean). / Montagnes, D.J.S.; Allen, J.; Brown, L.; Bulit, C.; Davidson, R.; Fielding, S.; Heath, M.; Holliday, N.P.; Rasmussen, J.; Sanders, R.; Waniek, J.J.; Wilson, D.

In: Marine Ecology Progress Series, Vol. 411, 2011, p. 101-115.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Role of ciliates and other microzooplankton in the Irminger Sea (NW Atlantic Ocean)

AU - Montagnes, D.J.S.

AU - Allen, J.

AU - Brown, L.

AU - Bulit, C.

AU - Davidson, R.

AU - Fielding, S.

AU - Heath, M.

AU - Holliday, N.P.

AU - Rasmussen, J.

AU - Sanders, R.

AU - Waniek, J.J.

AU - Wilson, D.

N1 - Title has been changed and small changes to authors

PY - 2011

Y1 - 2011

N2 - This study focuses on a large region of the open ocean where we predict that microzooplankton significantly influence foodweb structure over much of the year. The Irminger Sea exhibits low primary production that is generally poor for copepod production; in such waters, ciliates and other microzooplankton are major grazers of primary production and contribute significantly to the diets of holo- and mero-mesozooplankton. Surface plankton samples were collected during an extensive survey across the basin and along one transect at several depths, over 3 seasons (winter, spring, summer), but not including the spring bloom. Microzooplankton and phytoplankton samples were fixed with Lugol’s solution and microscopically enumerated for species abundance; biomass was determined from cell volumes. Basin-scale distributions of abundance, biomass, and production were examined by geostatistical and multidimensional scaling methods. Dominance of the <10 µm phytoplankton suggests that this should be a microzooplankton-dominated food web. Ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates are abundant in terms of numbers and biomass; heterotrophic dinoflagellates are more abundant than ciliates, but are less dominant in terms of biomass. Using ciliates as a proxy for all microzooplankton, we suggest that there are seasonal patterns in occurrence, and there is no basin-scale patchiness related to hydrographic features. We suggest that ciliate production is sufficient to account for the removal of 15 to 30% of the <10 µm primary production. If heterotrophic dinoflagellates were included in these estimates, removal may be doubled (i.e. 30 to 60%). We therefore contend that microzooplankton are major phytoplankton consumers in the system and should be carefully parameterised in models of this region.

AB - This study focuses on a large region of the open ocean where we predict that microzooplankton significantly influence foodweb structure over much of the year. The Irminger Sea exhibits low primary production that is generally poor for copepod production; in such waters, ciliates and other microzooplankton are major grazers of primary production and contribute significantly to the diets of holo- and mero-mesozooplankton. Surface plankton samples were collected during an extensive survey across the basin and along one transect at several depths, over 3 seasons (winter, spring, summer), but not including the spring bloom. Microzooplankton and phytoplankton samples were fixed with Lugol’s solution and microscopically enumerated for species abundance; biomass was determined from cell volumes. Basin-scale distributions of abundance, biomass, and production were examined by geostatistical and multidimensional scaling methods. Dominance of the <10 µm phytoplankton suggests that this should be a microzooplankton-dominated food web. Ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates are abundant in terms of numbers and biomass; heterotrophic dinoflagellates are more abundant than ciliates, but are less dominant in terms of biomass. Using ciliates as a proxy for all microzooplankton, we suggest that there are seasonal patterns in occurrence, and there is no basin-scale patchiness related to hydrographic features. We suggest that ciliate production is sufficient to account for the removal of 15 to 30% of the <10 µm primary production. If heterotrophic dinoflagellates were included in these estimates, removal may be doubled (i.e. 30 to 60%). We therefore contend that microzooplankton are major phytoplankton consumers in the system and should be carefully parameterised in models of this region.

KW - ciliates

KW - biomass

KW - picoplankton

KW - nanoplankton

KW - ciliates

KW - food web

KW - biomass nanoplankton

U2 - 10.3354/meps08646

DO - 10.3354/meps08646

M3 - Article

VL - 411

SP - 101

EP - 115

JO - Marine Ecology Progress Series

T2 - Marine Ecology Progress Series

JF - Marine Ecology Progress Series

SN - 0171-8630

ER -