Polar Biology

, Volume 39, Issue 2, pp 327–341 | Cite as

Distribution and vertical fluxes of silicoflagellates, ebridians, and the endoskeletal dinoflagellate Actiniscus in the western Arctic Ocean

  • Jonaotaro OnoderaEmail author
  • Eiji Watanabe
  • Shigeto Nishino
  • Naomi Harada
Original Paper


Spatial and temporal variations in major phytoplankton populations such as diatoms in the changing Arctic Ocean have been well studied, whereas only a few monitoring studies have been conducted on minor siliceous flagellates. To discern the relationship between hydrographic conditions and the spatio-temporal distribution of silicoflagellates, ebridians, and the endoskeletal dinoflagellate Actiniscus pentasterias, we analyzed seawater and bottom-tethered sediment-trap samples from the western Arctic Ocean. Silicoflagellates and ebridians were commonly observed in shelf waters around the southern Chukchi Sea in September–October during 2010 and 2013. However, one mesoscale patch with abundant silicoflagellates and ebridians was observed in the southwestern Canada Basin during September–October 2010. This offshore patch reflected an unusual occurrence of a mesoscale eddy deriving from the Alaskan Coastal Water. The active lateral transport of shelf materials by eddies was also evident in high silicoflagellate and ebridian fluxes at station Northwind Abyssal Plain (NAP) (75°N, 162°W, 1975-m water depth) in November–December during 2010 and 2011. The summer silicoflagellate flux at station NAP was mainly composed of Distephanus speculum. During the sea-ice cover period, except for July, silicoflagellates D. medianoctisol and D. octonarius were relatively abundant in the assemblage. The spike in D. speculum flux during July 2011 was observed with fecal pellets containing abundant silicoflagellates, suggesting a temporal silicoflagellate contribution to some kinds of zooplankton. The common occurrence of A. pentasterias in settling particles at station NAP during the winter may indicate their tolerance to cold water under sea ice.


Silicoflagellate Ebridian Actiniscus pentasterias Sinking particles Sediment trap Northwind Abyssal Plain Chukchi Sea Arctic Ocean 



We are grateful for the excellent assistance with the mooring operations provided by the captains, crew, chief scientists, onboard technician, and scientists of the R/V Mirai [Japan Agency for Marine Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC)] cruises MR10-05, MR12-E03 and MR13-06, and I/B CCGS S. W. Laurier in 2011. We thank Dr. Takashi Kikuchi (JAMSTEC) for cruise logistics, and Dr. Yuichiro Tanaka [National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan] for providing the sediment trap equipment. This work was funded by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (S) of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) JFY2010-2014, no. 22221003, “Catastrophic reduction of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean: its impact on the marine ecosystems in the polar region” to N.H., a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) of JSPS, no. 15H01736, and JSPS Research Fellowships for Young Scientists no. 22-5808 to J.O.

Supplementary material

300_2015_1784_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (213 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 213 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonaotaro Onodera
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Eiji Watanabe
    • 2
  • Shigeto Nishino
    • 2
  • Naomi Harada
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Research and Development Center for Global ChangeJapan Agency for Marine Earth Science and TechnologyYokosukaJapan
  2. 2.Institute of Arctic Climate and Environment ResearchJapan Agency for Marine Earth Science and TechnologyYokosukaJapan

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