The role of zooplankton in the regeneration of nitrogen in a coastal upwelling system off northwest Africa

Sharon L Smith, Terry E. Whitledge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

55 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The biomass, ammonia and urea release, and oxygen consumption of zooplankton were measured in the coastal upwelling ecosystem off northwest Africa (∼21° 40′N, 17° to 17°45′W). Zooplankton 102 to 505 μm in size dominated the biomass nearshore, while zooplankton larger than 1000 μm were the major component offshore. After correcting for depth, regeneration of nitrogen by zooplankton was greater nearshore than offshore. The zooplankton supplied an average of 44% of the ammonia demand of the phytoplankton and an average of 25% of the total nitrogen required by the phytoplankton. This upwelling is unusual among eutrophic systems that have been studied in having such a large percentage of the nitrogen necessary for primary production supplied as ammonia released by zooplankton.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-56
Number of pages8
JournalDeep-Sea Research
Volume24
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1977
Externally publishedYes

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zooplankton
upwelling
regeneration
nitrogen
ammonia
phytoplankton
biomass
oxygen consumption
urea
Africa
primary production
ecosystem

Cite this

The role of zooplankton in the regeneration of nitrogen in a coastal upwelling system off northwest Africa. / Smith, Sharon L; Whitledge, Terry E.

In: Deep-Sea Research, Vol. 24, No. 1, 01.01.1977, p. 49-56.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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