||Herlory Olivier1, 3, Blanchard Gerard F.1, Planche S1, Huet V1, Richard Pierre2, 3
||1 : Univ Rochelle, CNRS, LBEM, FRE 2727, F-17042 La Rochelle, France.
2 : CNRS, IFREMER, CREMA, UMR 10, F-17137 Lhoumeau, France.
||Marine Ecology Progress Series (0171-8630) (Inter-Research), 2005-08 , Vol. 298 , P. 95-100
|WOS© Times Cited
||Functional relationship, Biofilm, Biomass, Intertidal mudflat, Microphytobenthos
||Many scientists consider that the top centimetre of the sediment on intertidal mudflats contains the photosynthetic competent biomass (PCB). Part of this biomass migrates upward to the surface of the sediment during diurnal emersion periods to form a temporary biofilm: the photosynthetic active biomass (PAB). The present study tests the hypothesis that the size of the biofilm (PAB) is functionally dependent on PCB. Therefore, we have plotted PAB as a function of PCB for a range of different environmental conditions: 3 seasons and 5 tidal situations, representing a total of 600 cores. This investigation points out that, in spring and autumn, there was a simple linear relationship between PAB and PCB, thus indicating that the maximum size of the biofilm represents a constant fraction (between 13 and 18 %) of the available biomass in the top centimetre of the mud. The relationship was more complex in winter, but the general trend remained the same. The dependence of the size of the biofilm on PCB might have important ecological implications in terms of primary productivity and also the monitoring of intertidal microalgal biomass at large spatial scales.