Helgoländer Meeresuntersuchungen

, Volume 49, Issue 1–4, pp 283–293 | Cite as

Trophic interactions between zooplankton andPhaeocystis cf.globosa

  • F. C. Hansen
Visiting Scientists at the Biologische Anstalt Helgoland (History and Specific Results)


Mesozooplankton grazing onPhaeocystis cf.globosa was investigated by laboratory and field studies. Tests on 18 different species by means of laboratory incubation experiments, carried out at the Biologische Anstalt Helgoland, revealed thatPhaeocystis was ingested by 5 meroplanktonic and 6 holoplanktonic species; filtering and ingestion rates of the latter were determined. Among copepods, the highest feeding rates were found forCalanus helgolandicus andTemora longicornis. Copepods fed on all size-classes ofPhaeocystis offered (generally 4–500 μm equivalent spherical diameter [ESD]), but they preferred the colonies. FemaleC. helgolandicus and femaleT. longicornis preferably fed on larger colonies (ESD>200 μm and ESD>100 μm, respectively. However, a field study, carried out in the Marsdiep (Dutch Wadden Sea) showed phytoplankton grazing by the dominant copepodTemora longicornis to be negligible during thePhaeocystis spring bloom.T. longicornis gut fluorescence was inversely related toPhaeocystis dominance. The hypothesis has been put forward thatT. longicornis preferentially feeds on microzooplankton and by this may enhance rather than depressPhaeocystis blooms. Results from laboratory incubation experiments, including three trophic levels —Phaeocystis cf.globosa (algae),Strombidinopsis sp. (ciliate) andTemora longicornis (copepod) — support this hypothesis.


Waste Water Phytoplankton Field Study Ingestion Rate Trophic Level 
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Copyright information

© Biologische Anstalt Helgiland 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. C. Hansen
    • 1
  1. 1.Netherlands Institute for Sea ResearchAB Den BurgThe Netherlands

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