Seasonal patterns in plankton communities in a pluriannual time series at a coastal Mediterranean site (Gulf of Naples): an attempt to discern recurrences and trends
Keywords:Mediterranean Sea, phytoplankton, ciliates, mesozooplankton, seasonal cycle, long term series
The annual cycle of plankton was studied over 14 years from 1984 to 2000 at a coastal station in the Gulf of Naples, with the aim of assessing seasonal patterns and interannual trends. Phytoplankton biomass started increasing over the water column in February-early March, and generally achieved peak values in the upper layers in late spring. Another peak was often recorded in autumn. Diatoms and phytoflagellates dominated for the largest part of the year. Ciliates showed their main peaks in phase with phytoplankton and were mainly represented by small (< 30 mm) naked choreotrichs. Mesozooplankton increased in March-April, reaching maximum concentrations in summer. Copepods were always the most abundant group, followed by cladocerans in summer. At the interannual scale, a high variability and a decreasing trend were recorded over the sampling period for autotrophic biomass. Mesozooplankton biomass showed a less marked interannual variability. From 1995 onwards, phytoplankton populations increased in cell number but decreased in cell size, with intense blooms of small diatoms and undetermined coccoid species frequently observed in recent years. In spite of those interannual variations, the different phases of the annual cycle and the occurrence of several plankton species were remarkably regular.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2004 Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.© CSIC. Manuscripts published in both the printed and online versions of this Journal are the property of Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, and quoting this source is a requirement for any partial or full reproduction.
All contents of this electronic edition, except where otherwise noted, are distributed under a “Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International” (CC BY 4.0) License. You may read here the basic information and the legal text of the license. The indication of the CC BY 4.0 License must be expressly stated in this way when necessary.
Self-archiving in repositories, personal webpages or similar, of any version other than the published by the Editor, is not allowed.