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Zooplankton grazing on Phaeocystis: a quantitative review and future challenges

Nejstgaard, Jens C and Tang, Kam W and Steinke, Michael and Dutz, Jörg and Koski, Marja and Antajan, Elvire and Long, Jeremy D (2007) 'Zooplankton grazing on Phaeocystis: a quantitative review and future challenges.' Biogeochemistry, 83 (1-3). pp. 147-172. ISSN 0168-2563

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Abstract

The worldwide colony-forming haptophyte phytoplankton Phaeocystis spp. are key organisms in trophic and biogeochemical processes in the ocean. Many organisms from protists to fish ingest cells and/or colonies of Phaeocystis. Reports on specific mortality of Phaeocystis in natural plankton or mixed prey due to grazing by zooplankton, especially protozooplankton, are still limited. Reported feeding rates vary widely for both crustaceans and protists feeding on even the same Phaeocystis types and sizes. Quantitative analysis of available data showed that: (1) laboratory-derived crustacean grazing rates on monocultures of Phaeocystis may have been overestimated compared to feeding in natural plankton communities, and should be treated with caution; (2) formation of colonies by P. globosa appeared to reduce predation by small copepods (e.g., Acartia, Pseudocalanus, Temora and Centropages), whereas large copepods (e.g., Calanus spp.) were able to feed on colonies of Phaeocystis pouchetii; (3) physiological differences between different growth states, species, strains, cell types, and laboratory culture versus natural assemblages may explain most of the variations in reported feeding rates; (4) chemical signaling between predator and prey may be a major factor controlling grazing on Phaeocystis; (5) it is unclear to what extent different zooplankton, especially protozooplankton, feed on the different life forms of Phaeocystis in situ. To better understand the mechanisms controlling zooplankton grazing in situ, future studies should aim at quantifying specific feeding rates on different Phaeocystis species, strains, cell types, prey sizes and growth states, and account for chemical signaling between the predator and prey. Recently developed molecular tools are promising approaches to achieve this goal in the future.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: colony formation; DMS; gut pigment; molecular methods; microzooplankton; Phaeocystis; antarctica; predator defense
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Life Sciences, School of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2022 14:10
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2022 14:10
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/32481

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