Picoplankton composition related to thermohaline circulation: The Albanian boundary zone (southern Adriatic) in late spring

Tina Šilović; Zrinka Ljubešić; Hrvoje Mihanović (HHI); Goran Olujić (HHI); Senka Terzić; Željko Jakšić; Damir Viličić;

Godina: 2011

Link: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0272771410004129

Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science. 91 (2011); 519-525 (članak, znanstveni)

Picoplankton distribution at the boundary zone of the southern Adriatic in May 2009 on a 75 km long shelf-continental slope transect was assessed by combining epifluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry and high-performance liquid chromatography data with hydrographic observations. The picoplankton distribution was greatly influenced by the hydrographic conditions prevailing in the southern Adriatic because of the influence of the Levantine Intermediate Water (LIW) and East Adriatic Current (EAC) forcing. Heterotrophic bacteria numerically dominated the picoplankton community through the entire transect with no significant accumulation. By contrast, picophytoplankton accumulated in the 50–75 m layer, forming a pronounced deep chlorophyll maximum. Synechococcus dominated the photosynthetic picoplankton, whereas picoeukaryotes were the least abundant. The intrusion of warm LIW observed in the layer between 100 and 350 m was followed by Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus peaks (10 × 103 cells mL−1 and 90 × 103 cells mL−1, respectively), as well as by the appearance of two Synechococcus ecotypes. Most picoeukaryotes were observed at the offshore stations, where geostrophic current calculation revealed the strongest EAC influence. A strong EAC spread over the central and eastern basin created a barrier for Prochlorococcus, whereas the picoeukaryote maxima coincided with the core of the EAC, suggesting its persistence to hydrological instabilities.