Production of DMSP and DMS during a mesocosm study of an Emiliania huxleyi bloom: influence of bacteria and Calanus finmarchicus grazing

Levasseur, M.; Michaud, S.; Egge, J.; Cantin, G.; Nejstgaard, J. C.; Sanders, R. ORCID:; Fernandez, E.; Solberg, P. T.; Heimdal, B.; Gosselin, M.. 1996 Production of DMSP and DMS during a mesocosm study of an Emiliania huxleyi bloom: influence of bacteria and Calanus finmarchicus grazing. Marine Biology, 126 (4). 609-618.

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We investigated the influence of bacteria and metazooplankton on the production of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfide (DMS) during blooms of Emiliania huxleyi (Lohmann) Hay and Mohler in seawater mesocosms. The phytoplankton succession was marked by the rapid collapse of an initial Skeletonema costatum (Greville) Cleve bloom followed by a small E. huxleyi bloom. The collapse of the diatom bloom was accompanied by an increase in concentrations of dissolved DMSP (DMSPd) and bacterial abundance and activity (as determined by the thymidine incorporation technique). The increase in bacterial activity was followed by a rapid decrease in DMSPd concentrations which remained low for the rest of the experiment, even during the subsequent collapse of the E. huxleyi blooms. The absence of DMSPd and DMS peaks during the declining phase of the E. huxleyi blooms was attributed to the high bacterial activity prevailing at that time. The influence of metazooplankton grazing on DMSP and DMS production was investigated by adding moderate (24 mg dry weight m-3) and high (520 mg dry weight m-3) concentrations of Copepodite Stage V and adults of Calanus finmarchicus to two of four filtered (200 μm mesh net) enclosures during the E. huxleyi blooms. The addition of C. finmarchicus, even in high concentrations, had no apparent effect on the dynamics of E. huxleyi, suggesting that the copepods were not grazing significantly on nanophytoplankton. The addition of copepods in high concentrations favored an accumulation of chlorophyll a and particulate DMSP. These results suggest that copepods were preying on the herbivorous microzooplankton which, in turn, was controlling the biomass of nanophytoplankton. DMS production was also enhanced in the enclosure with maximum metazooplankton biomass, suggesting that the grazing of C. finmarchicus on microzooplankton containing DMSP may contribute to DMS production. These results provide strong support to the emerging idea that bacteria and metazooplankton grazing play a dominant role in determining the timing and magnitude of DMS pulses following phytoplankton blooms.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 0025-3162
Date made live: 06 Oct 2020 14:35 +0 (UTC)

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