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Depth attenuation of organic matter export associated with jelly falls

Lebrato, Mario; Pahlow, Markus; Oschlies, Andreas; Pitt, Kylie A.; Jones, Daniel O.B.; Molinero, Juan Carlos ; Condon, Robert. H.. 2011 Depth attenuation of organic matter export associated with jelly falls. Limnology and Oceanography, 56 (5). 1917-1928. 10.4319/lo.2011.56.5.1917

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Abstract/Summary

We explore the attenuation in the export ratio of jelly-POM (particulate organic matter) with depth as a function of the decay rate, temperature, and sedimentation rate. Using data from the Vertical Transport In the Global Ocean project, we compare ratios computed with the Martin-curve, with a particle-based parameterization, and with sediment-trap data. Owing to the temperature dependence of the decay rate (Q10 5 4.28), the jelly-POM export ratio below 500m is 20–45% larger in subpolar and temperate areas than in the tropics. Vertical migration of gelatinous zooplankton leads to a variable starting depth of a jelly fall (death depth), which governs the start of remineralization, and the fate of the biomass. Owing to the absence of observations, we employ a sinking speed matrix ranging from 100 m d21 to 1500 m d21 to represent slow- and fast-sinking carcasses. The assumption of a constant decay rate k independent of temperature in other particle-based models may not be appropriate. These results provide information for including jelly-POM in global biogeochemical model formulations.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.4319/lo.2011.56.5.1917
ISSN: 00243590
Date made live: 23 Sep 2011 12:12 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/297475

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