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Low contribution of N2 fixation to new production and excess nitrogen in the subtropical northeast Atlantic margin
Benavides, M.; Aristegui, J.; Agawin, N.S.R.; Alvarez-Salgado, X.A.; Alvarez, M.; Troupin, C. (2013). Low contribution of N2 fixation to new production and excess nitrogen in the subtropical northeast Atlantic margin. Deep-Sea Res., Part 1, Oceanogr. Res. Pap. 81: 36-48.
In: Deep-Sea Research, Part I. Oceanographic Research Papers. Elsevier: Oxford. ISSN 0967-0637, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 279395 [ OMA ]

Author keywords
    New production; Regenerated production; f-Ratio; Diazotrophy; Upwelling;Dissolved organic nitrogen release

Authors  Top 
  • Benavides, M.
  • Aristegui, J.
  • Agawin, N.S.R.
  • Alvarez-Salgado, X.A.
  • Alvarez, M.
  • Troupin, C., more

    We used 15N-labeled substrates to measure dinitrogen (N2) fixation, nitrate (NO3-) and ammonium (NH4+) uptake, regeneration and associated dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) release in a coastal upwelling system (Cape Ghir, ~31°N) and an open ocean grid (bounded between 25°–42°N and 20°W) in the Canary Current region during the summer of 2009. New production (Pnew=NO3- uptake+N2 fixation+DON released from NO3- uptake-NO3- regeneration) was higher in the upwelling than in the open ocean zone (0.126 and 0.014 µmol N L-1 h-1, respectively), while regenerated production (Preg=NH4+ uptake+DON released from NH4+ uptake+NH4+ regeneration) was similar in both zones (0.157 and 0.133 µmol N L-1 h-1, respectively). The resulting f -ratio (Pnew/Pnew+Preg) for the open ocean and upwelling zones was 0.08 and 0.48, respectively. The availability of nitrogen in excess of that expected from Redfield stoichiometry is generally attributed to N2 fixation. A previous study indicated that our open ocean grid zone had an excess nitrogen production rate of 40±22×1010 mol N yr-1. We revisited this budget including new dissolved organic matter and NO3-fluxes through the Strait of Gibraltar and estimated a revised nitrogen excess rate of 22±19×1010 mol N yr-1. The average volumetric rate of N2 fixation for this zone was only 1.3×10-3 nmol N L-1 d-1, indicating that its influence in Pnew and nitrogen excess production in this part of the Atlantic is negligible.

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