Journal Article Temporal variation of phytoplankton growth and grazing loss in the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia

Lim, Joon Hai  ,  Lee, Choon Weng  ,  Kudo, Isao

187 ( 5 )  , p.246 , 2015-05 , Springer
Phytoplankton growth (mu) and grazing loss (g) rates were measured monthly by the Landry-Hassett dilution method over a 2-year period at both estuarine (Klang) and coastal water (Port Dickson) systems along the Straits of Malacca. Chlorophyll a (Chl a) concentration ranged from 0.20 to 4.47 mu g L-1 at Klang except on two occasions when Chl a spiked above 10 mu g L-1. In contrast, Chl a concentrations were relatively stable at Port Dickson (0.14 to 2.76 mu g L-1). From the rate measurements, mu was higher (t=2.01, df=43, p<0.05) at Klang (0.30 to 2.26 day(-1)) than at Port Dickson (0.18 to 1.66 day(-1)), but g was not significantly different (p>0.80). g ranged from 0.30 to 1.50 and 0.21 to 1.51 day(-1) at Klang and Port Dickson, respectively. In this study, grazing loss was coupled to phytoplankton growth, and the ratio of g/mu or grazing pressure which estimates the proportion of primary production grazed was 50 % at Klang and lower than at Port Dickson (68 %; t=2.213, df=36, p<0.05). We found that the higher growth rates in a eutrophic system, i.e., Klang, were not matched by higher grazing loss, and this may have implications for the biogeochemical cycling in coastal waters.

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