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How will increased dinoflagellate:diatom ratios affect copepod egg production? - A case study from the Baltic Sea

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Vehmaa, A., Larsson, P., Vidoudez, C., Pohnert, G., Reinikainen, M., & Engstrom-Ost, J. (2011). How will increased dinoflagellate:diatom ratios affect copepod egg production? - A case study from the Baltic Sea. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 401(1-2), 134-140. doi:10.1016/j.jembe.2011.01.020.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-606E-6
Mild winters are modifying the plankton spring bloom composition so that diatoms are decreasing and dinoflagellates increasing. We used two common spring bloom phytoplankton species, a diatom and a dinoflagellate to study the effects of changing bloom composition on the reproduction of the calanoid copepod Acartia bifilosa Giesbrecht, a dominant species in the northern Baltic Sea. Egg production was significantly higher when copepods were fed with Scrippsiella hangoei (Schiller) Larsen dinoflagellates or a mixture of Scrippsiella and Skeletonema marinoi Sarno and Zingone diatoms than when they were provided with Skeletonema only. This effect was observed despite the fact that the Skeletonema strain did not produce polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUAs) and its nutritional quality was high according to polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFAs) and sterol measurements, and moderate according to mineral (C:N and C:P) measurements. When offered mixtures of Skeletonema and Scrippsiella, copepods ingested both, even when the other one was rare. This indicates potential positive effect of multispecies diets not verified in this study. Here we show that increasing dinoflagellate:diatom ratio might have a positive effect on copepod reproduction. (C) 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.