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The impact of timing of the thermal stratification on production, succession and grazing of phytoplankton in shelf seas: a model study
Ruardij, P.; van Haren, J.M.; Ridderinkhof, H. (1996). The impact of timing of the thermal stratification on production, succession and grazing of phytoplankton in shelf seas: a model study, in: [s.d.] Nature (Lond.). 453(7191): pp. 1-24
In: Nature: International Weekly Journal of Science. Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 0028-0836, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
Document type: Project report

Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Ruardij, P.
  • van Haren, J.M.
  • Ridderinkhof, H., more

Abstract
    Local heating rate within the water column depends on energy input by solar radiation and heat exchange across the surface as controlled by wind and convection. The heating results in thermal stratification of the water column, which in turn affects the vertical transport of, for example, nutrients. In this paper we evaluate the implications of the stratification on the biota by focusing on the time of the onset, its stability in space and its variability in time. Especially the consequence of the stratification on the phytoplankton dynamics and the trophic interactions are shown. For this purpose, an integrated ecosystem model is calibrated with data from a mooring project, during which a large number of physical and biological parameters have been measured at a site on the Oyster Grounds in the North Sea over a 15 months period. The physical model is a one-dimensional entrainment/detrainment model. The ecological model consists of submodels which are part of the ERSEM-ecosystem model and which describe the biological and chemical processes in the water column and in the benthos. Results show that stratification has a major impact consequences for the production and succession of phytoplankton and the structure of the food web during the whole growing season.

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