Abstract Picoplankton (< 3 ), nanoplankton (< 25 ), and netphytoplankton (> 25 ) chlorophyll a were measured during the spring and summer months at sampling stations in the Strait of Magellan and three adjacent areas: Bell Bay, Oracion Bay and Brinkley Island. The results obtained in the present study indicated that the biomass of the netphytoplankton fraction became an important component (68%) of the phytoplankton community during late spring (November, December, January) in all four areas. This is supported by the dominance of large chain-forming diatom species registered in these coastal stations. In contrast, the contribution of pico- and nanoplankton fractions became important (> 67%) during early spring (September, October) at the Strait of Magellan and during summer (February, March) at Bell Bay, Oracion Bay and Brinkley Island. Introduction During the last decade the size spectrum of plankton has received much attention because of the potential influence on the food web and fishery dynamics (Malone 1980, Azam et al. 1983). In addition, the application of new methods for the quantification of small cell-size phytoplankton (< 20 ) has revealed that most of the biomass (> 50%) and primary production (> 80%) of marine phytoplankton in oceanic and
Botanica Marina – de Gruyter
Published: Jan 1, 1993
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