Dominance of Cryptophyceae during the phytoplankton spring bloom in the central North Sea detected by HPLC analysis of pigments
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- Gieskes, W.W.C. & Kraay, G.W. Mar. Biol. (1983) 75: 179. doi:10.1007/BF00406000
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Microscopic observations of Lugol-preserved samples collected near a subsurface drogue during the spring bloom of 1981 in the central North Sea suggested that the phytoplankton crop consisted mainly of diatoms. However, the relative abundance of alloxanthin among the carotenoids measured by reversed-phase, high-performance liquid chromatography indicated that in most samples Cryptophyceae were at least as abundant. On the basis of a multiple regression analysis of pigment concentrations to obtain pigment ratios, the contribution of Cryptophycean chlorophyll to total chlorophyll was calculated. The Cryptophyceae:diatom ratio appeared to be variable during the period of observations, ranging between 0 at the beginning to 1.0 ten days later. It is recommended that the classical method of counting phytoplankton for crop estimates be supplemented by chemotaxonomical studies with modern quantitative chromatographic methods such as HPLC for the measurement of algal pigments.