Analysis of the vertical distribution in a model of phytoplankton dynamics

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Abstract

Phytoplankton often faces the dilemma of livingin contrasting gradients of two essential resources: the lightthat comes from above and nutrients that are often suppliedfrom below. In poorly mixed water columns, algae can beheterogeneously distributed, with thin layers of biomass foundon the surface, in depth, or on the sediment surface. Here, weshow that these patterns can result from intraspecific competitionbetween light and nutrients. First, we present numerical solutionsof a reaction-diffusion-taxis model for phytoplankton, nutrientsand light. We argue that motile phytoplankton can form a thinlayer under poorly mixed conditions. The numerical solution ofthis model indicates the depth at which phytoplankton is equallylimited by both resources. The layer becomes shallower with anincrease in the nutrient supply and deeper with an increase inthe light supply. These general patterns are in agreement withfield observations. Thus, this model can explain many patternsof algal distribution found in poorly mixed aquatic ecosystems.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Pagine57-59
Numero di pagine3
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2010

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vertical distribution
phytoplankton
nutrient
taxis
resource
aquatic ecosystem
water column
alga
analysis
biomass
sediment

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title = "Analysis of the vertical distribution in a model of phytoplankton dynamics",
abstract = "Phytoplankton often faces the dilemma of livingin contrasting gradients of two essential resources: the lightthat comes from above and nutrients that are often suppliedfrom below. In poorly mixed water columns, algae can beheterogeneously distributed, with thin layers of biomass foundon the surface, in depth, or on the sediment surface. Here, weshow that these patterns can result from intraspecific competitionbetween light and nutrients. First, we present numerical solutionsof a reaction-diffusion-taxis model for phytoplankton, nutrientsand light. We argue that motile phytoplankton can form a thinlayer under poorly mixed conditions. The numerical solution ofthis model indicates the depth at which phytoplankton is equallylimited by both resources. The layer becomes shallower with anincrease in the nutrient supply and deeper with an increase inthe light supply. These general patterns are in agreement withfield observations. Thus, this model can explain many patternsof algal distribution found in poorly mixed aquatic ecosystems.",
keywords = "Aquatic ecosystems, Phytoplankton, Spatial patterns",
author = "Nicola Pizzolato and Stefano Spezia and Giovanni Denaro and Bernardo Spagnolo and Luciano Curcio and Davide Valenti and {La Cognata}, Angelo",
year = "2010",
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TY - CONF

T1 - Analysis of the vertical distribution in a model of phytoplankton dynamics

AU - Pizzolato, Nicola

AU - Spezia, Stefano

AU - Denaro, Giovanni

AU - Spagnolo, Bernardo

AU - Curcio, Luciano

AU - Valenti, Davide

AU - La Cognata, Angelo

PY - 2010

Y1 - 2010

N2 - Phytoplankton often faces the dilemma of livingin contrasting gradients of two essential resources: the lightthat comes from above and nutrients that are often suppliedfrom below. In poorly mixed water columns, algae can beheterogeneously distributed, with thin layers of biomass foundon the surface, in depth, or on the sediment surface. Here, weshow that these patterns can result from intraspecific competitionbetween light and nutrients. First, we present numerical solutionsof a reaction-diffusion-taxis model for phytoplankton, nutrientsand light. We argue that motile phytoplankton can form a thinlayer under poorly mixed conditions. The numerical solution ofthis model indicates the depth at which phytoplankton is equallylimited by both resources. The layer becomes shallower with anincrease in the nutrient supply and deeper with an increase inthe light supply. These general patterns are in agreement withfield observations. Thus, this model can explain many patternsof algal distribution found in poorly mixed aquatic ecosystems.

AB - Phytoplankton often faces the dilemma of livingin contrasting gradients of two essential resources: the lightthat comes from above and nutrients that are often suppliedfrom below. In poorly mixed water columns, algae can beheterogeneously distributed, with thin layers of biomass foundon the surface, in depth, or on the sediment surface. Here, weshow that these patterns can result from intraspecific competitionbetween light and nutrients. First, we present numerical solutionsof a reaction-diffusion-taxis model for phytoplankton, nutrientsand light. We argue that motile phytoplankton can form a thinlayer under poorly mixed conditions. The numerical solution ofthis model indicates the depth at which phytoplankton is equallylimited by both resources. The layer becomes shallower with anincrease in the nutrient supply and deeper with an increase inthe light supply. These general patterns are in agreement withfield observations. Thus, this model can explain many patternsof algal distribution found in poorly mixed aquatic ecosystems.

KW - Aquatic ecosystems

KW - Phytoplankton

KW - Spatial patterns

UR - http://hdl.handle.net/10447/50189

M3 - Other

SP - 57

EP - 59

ER -