Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 5, Issue 5, pp 525–533 | Cite as

Effect of nutrient pulse concentration and frequency on growth ofGracilaria chilensis plants and levels of epiphytic algae

  • T. D. Pickering
  • M. E. Gordon
  • L. J. Tong


The effect of nutrient pulse concentration and frequency onGracilaria chilensis Bird, McLachlanet O Oliveira growth and epiphyte abundace was investigated for plants grown in an indoor culture facility. The frequency of nutrient pulses (which ranged from 1 pulse to 4 pulses per 14 days) had a strong influence on plant growth, while pulse concentration (from 72 to 143 µM as ammonium) had a lesser influence. Growth became a function of total N flux only when plants received nutrient pulses at least twice per 14 days. Both pulse frequency and pulse concentration affected the abundance of epiphytic algae found attached toGracilaria thalli, but pulse frequency was the more significant of the two factors. Their effects could be combined into the single factor, total N flux. Both reasonableG. chilensis growth and low levels of epiphytes were achieved under these conditions (20 °C, 25 µ mol photon m−2 s−1 PAR) if ammonium was pulsed at relatively high concentrations (up to 150 µM) once every 7 days into otherwise nitrogen-depleted seawater.

Key words

Gracilaria chilensis growth nutrient pulses epiphyte abundance 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. D. Pickering
    • 1
  • M. E. Gordon
    • 2
  • L. J. Tong
    • 3
  1. 1.MAF Policy (Fisheries), Ministry of Agriculture and FisheriesWellingtonNew Zealand
  2. 2.School of Biological Sciences, Victoria University of WellingtonWellingtonNew Zealand
  3. 3.Aquaculture Research CentreMAF Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture and FisheriesWellingtonNew Zealand

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