Polar Biology

, Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 199–208 | Cite as

Phytoplankton blooms under dim and cold conditions in freshwater lakes of East Antarctica

  • Yukiko TanabeEmail author
  • Sakae Kudoh
  • Satoshi Imura
  • Mitsuo Fukuchi
Original Paper


The seasonal variations of limnological (water temperature, light availability, turbidity, and chlorophyll a concentration) parameters were recorded continuously from January 2004 to February 2005 at two freshwater lakes: Oyako-ike and Hotoke-ike, Sôya Coast, East Antarctica. Water was in a liquid phase throughout the year, with temperatures ranging from 0 to 10°C. The maximum photosynthetically active radiation in Lake Oyako-ike was 23.16 mol m−2 day−1 (at 3.8 m) and Hotoke-ike was 53.01 mol m−2 day−1 (at 2.2 m) in summer, and chlorophyll a concentration ranged from ca. 0.5 to 2.5 μg L−1 (Oyako-ike) and from ca. 0.1 to 0.8 μg L−1 (Hotoke-ike) during the study period. Increase in chlorophyll a fluorescence occurred under dim-light conditions when the lakes were covered with ice in spring and autumn, but the signals were minimum in ice-free summer in both the lakes. During spring and summer, as a result of decreasing snow cover, the chlorophyll a concentration similarly decreased when PAR was relatively high, following periods of heavy winds. The autumnal and spring increase occurred under different PAR levels (ca. 20-fold and 90-fold stronger, respectively, in autumn in both the lakes). Differences in the autumn and spring increases suggest that the spring algal community is more shade-adapted than the autumn algal community. Antarctic phytoplankton appears especially adapted to low-light levels and inhibited by strong light regimes.


Phytoplankton Photosynthetically Active Radiation Phytoplankton Biomass Benthic Alga Light Climate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We gratefully acknowledge the members of the 45th Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition (JARE), especially its leader Dr. H. Kanda, for their support in the field and other ways. We thank three anonymous reviewers for their constructive remarks.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yukiko Tanabe
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sakae Kudoh
    • 1
    • 2
  • Satoshi Imura
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mitsuo Fukuchi
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Polar ScienceThe Graduate University for Advanced StudiesTokyoJapan
  2. 2.National Institute of Polar ResearchTokyoJapan

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