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A dataset on trophic modes of aquatic protists
Schneider, L.K.; Anestis, K.; Mansour, J.; Anschütz, A.; Gypens, N.; Hansen, P.; John, U.; Klemm, K.; Martin, J.; Medic, J.; Not, F.; Stolte, W. (2020). A dataset on trophic modes of aquatic protists. Biodiversity Data Journal 8: e56648.
In: Biodiversity Data Journal. Pensoft Publishers: Sofia. ISSN 1314-2828, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors | Dataset 

    Aquatic communities > Plankton > Phytoplankton
Author keywords
    aquatic protists, protozooplankton, mixoplankton, trophic mode, functional traits, functional biodiversity

Authors  Top | Dataset 
  • Schneider, L.K., more
  • Anestis, K.
  • Mansour, J.
  • Anschütz, A.
  • Gypens, N., more
  • Hansen, P.
  • John, U.
  • Klemm, K.
  • Martin, J.
  • Medic, J.
  • Not, F.
  • Stolte, W.
  • Fernández Bejarano, S.J., revisor, more

    An important functional trait of organisms is their trophic mode. It determines their position within food webs, as well as their function within an ecosystem. For the better part of the 20th century, aquatic protist communities were thought to consist mainly of producers (phytoplankton) and consumers (protozooplankton). Phytoplankton cover their energy requirements through photosynthesis (phototrophy), while protozooplankton graze on prey and organic particles (phagotrophy). However, over the past decades, it was shown that another trophic group (mixoplankton) comprise a notable part of aquatic protist communities. Mixoplankton employ a third trophic mode by combining phototrophy and phagotrophy (mixotrophy). Due to the historical dichotomy, it is not straightforward to gain adequate and correct information on the trophic mode of aquatic protists. Long hours of literature research or expert knowledge are needed to correctly assign trophic modes. Additionally, aquatic protists also have a long history of undergoing taxonomic changes which make it difficult to compare past and present literature. While WoRMS, the World Register of Marine Species, keeps track of the taxonomic changes and assigns each species a unique AphiaID that can be linked to its various historic and present taxonomic hierarchy, there is currently no machine-readable database to query aquatic protists for their trophic modes.

  • ‘Proof of concept’ product: Fraction of mixoplankton (photo-phagotrophic) species in the Greater North Sea and Celtic Seas, more

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