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Environmental dynamics of red Noctiluca scintillans bloom in tropical coastal waters

Baliarsingh, SK and Lotliker, AA and Trainer, VL and Wells, ML and Parida, C and Sahu, BK and Srichandan, S and Sahoo, S and Sahu, KC and Kumar, TS (2016) Environmental dynamics of red Noctiluca scintillans bloom in tropical coastal waters. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 111 (1-2). pp. 277-286.

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An intense bloom of red Noctiluca scintillans (NS) occurred off the Rushikulya estuarine region along the east coast of India, an important site for mass nesting events of the vulnerable Olive Ridley sea turtle. At its peak, densities of NS were 3.3 105 cells-l-1, with low relative abundance of other phytoplankton. The peak bloom coincided with high abundance of gelatinous planktivores which may have facilitated bloom development by their grazing on other zooplankton, particularly copepods. Ammonium concentrations increased by approximately 4-fold in the later stages of bloom, coincident with stable NS abundance and chlorophyll concentrations in the nano- and microplankton. This increase likely was attributable to release of intracellular ammonium accumulated through NS grazing. Dissolved oxygen concentrations decreased in sub-surface waters to near hypoxia. Micro-phytoplankton increasingly dominated chlorophyll-a biomass as the bloom declined, with diminishing picoplankton abundance likely the result of high predation by the ciliate Mesodinium rubrum. Together, these data illustrate factors that can disrupt ecosystem balance in this critically important Indian coastal region.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Noctiluca scintillans; bloom; chlorophyll; picoplankton; nutrient; Bay of Bengal
Subjects: Oceanography > marine biology
Oceanography > oceanography
Depositing User: INCOIS Library
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2017 05:47
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2017 05:47

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