Biogeochemical conditions and ice algal photosynthetic parameters in Weddell Sea ice during early spring
Meiners, K and Papadimitriou, S and Thomas, DN and Norman, L and Dieckmann, GS, Biogeochemical conditions and ice algal photosynthetic parameters in Weddell Sea ice during early spring, Polar Biology, 32, (7) pp. 1055-1065. ISSN 0722-4060 (2009) [Refereed Article]
Physical, biogeochemical and photosynthetic parameters were measured in sea ice brine and ice core bottom samples in the north-western Weddell Sea during early spring 2006. Sea ice brines collected from sackholes were characterised by cold temperatures (range −7.4 to −3.8°C), high salinities (range 61.4–118.0), and partly elevated dissolved oxygen concentrations (range 159–413 ́mol kg−1) when compared to surface seawater. Nitrate (range 0.5–76.3 ́mol kg−1), dissolved inorganic phosphate (range 0.2–7.0 ́mol kg−1) and silicic acid (range 74–285 ́mol kg−1) concentrations in sea ice brines were depleted when compared to surface seawater. In contrast, NH4 + (range 0.3–23.0 ́mol kg−1) and dissolved organic carbon (range 140–707 ́mol kg−1) were enriched in the sea ice brines. Ice core bottom samples exhibited moderate temperatures and brine salinities, but high algal biomass (4.9–435.5 ́g Chl a l−1 brine) and silicic acid depletion. Pulse amplitude modulated fluorometry was used for the determination of the photosynthetic parameters F v/F m, á, rETRmax and E k. The maximum quantum yield of photosystem II, F v/F m, ranged from 0.101 to 0.500 (average 0.284 ± 0.132) and 0.235 to 0.595 (average 0.368 ± 0.127) in the sea ice internal and bottom communities, respectively. The fluorometric measurements indicated medium ice algal photosynthetic activity both in the internal and bottom communities of the sea ice. An observed lack of correlation between biogeochemical and photosynthetic parameters was most likely due to temporally and spatially decoupled physical and biological processes in the sea ice brine channel system, and was also influenced by the temporal and spatial resolution of applied sampling techniques.