Comparison of C and N stable isotope ratios between surface particulate organic matter and microphytoplankton in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean)

Type Article
Date 2008-08
Language English
Author(s) Harmelin Vivien M, Loizeau VeroniqueORCID, Mellon-Duval Capucine, Beker B, Arlhac D, Bodiguel Xavier, Ferraton Franck, Hermand R, Philippon Xavier, Salen Picard C
Affiliation(s) Univ Aix Marseille 2, CNRS, Ctr Oceanol Marseille, UMR 6540,Stn Marine Endoume, F-13007 Marseille, France.
IFREMER, Ctr Brest, Dept Biogeochim & Ecotoxicol, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
IFREMER, Ctr Rech Halieut Mediterraneenne & Trop, Lab Ressources Halieut, F-34203 Sete, France.
Univ Aix Marseille 2, CNRS, Ctr Oceanol Marseille, UMS 2196,Stn Marine Endoume, F-13007 Marseille, France.
Source Continental Shelf Research (0278-4343) (Elsevier), 2008-08 , Vol. 28 , N. 15 , P. 1911-1919
DOI 10.1016/j.csr.2008.03.002
WOS© Times Cited 85
Keyword(s) Seasonal variation, PON/Chl a, C/N ratio, Stable isotopes, Fluorescence maximum, Phytoplankton composition, Particulate organic matter
Abstract Carbon and nitrogen stable isotope ratios of particulate organic matter (POM) in surface water and 63-200 mu m-sized microphytoplankton collected at the fluorescence maximum were studied in four sites in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean), a marine area influenced by the Rhone River inputs, in May and November 2004. Some environmental (temperature, salinity) and biological (POM, Chlorophyll a and phaeopigments contents, phytoplankton biomass and composition) parameters were also analysed. Significantly different C and N isotopic signatures between surface water POM and microphytoplankton were recorded in all sites and seasons. Surface water POM presented systematically lower delta C-13 (similar to 4.2 parts per thousand) and higher delta N-15 (similar to 2.8 parts per thousand) values than those of microphytoplankton, due to a higher content of continental and detrital material. Seasonal variations were observed for all environmental and biological parameters, except salinity. Water temperature was lower in May than in November, the fluorescence maximum was located deeper and the Chlorophyll a content and the phytoplankton biomass were higher, along with low PON/Chl a ratio, corresponding to spring bloom conditions. At all sites and seasons, diatoms dominated the phytoplankton community in abundance, whereas dinoflagellate importance increased in autumn particularly in coastal sites. C and N isotopic signatures of phytoplankton did not vary with season. However, the delta N-15 of surface water POM was significantly higher in November than in May in all sites likely in relation to an increase in N-15/N-14 ratio of the Rhone River POM which influenced surface water in the Gulf of Lions. As it is important to determine true baseline values of primary producers for analysing marine food webs, this study demonstrated that C and N isotopic values of surface water POM cannot be used as phytoplankton proxy in coastal areas submitted to high river inputs.
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Harmelin Vivien M, Loizeau Veronique, Mellon-Duval Capucine, Beker B, Arlhac D, Bodiguel Xavier, Ferraton Franck, Hermand R, Philippon Xavier, Salen Picard C (2008). Comparison of C and N stable isotope ratios between surface particulate organic matter and microphytoplankton in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean). Continental Shelf Research, 28(15), 1911-1919. Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.1016/j.csr.2008.03.002 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00000/5919/