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Journal of Paleolimnology

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 23–36 | Cite as

Development of a diatom-based model for inferring total phosphorus in southeastern Australian water storages

  • John Tibby
Article

Abstract

Diatom-based transfer functions for inferring epilimnetic total phosphorus (TP) have been developed from a data set of 33 southeastern Australian water storages. Regular institutional monitoring of these sites has allowed comparison of models developed from TP data covering different time periods. A model based on mean annual TP performs better than models derived from winter maximum TP, spring minimum TP or TP nearest the time of diatom sampling. A mean annual TP model (WA-PLS 2 component) has a jack-knifed diatom-inferred versus measured TP correlation coefficient (r2jack) of 0.69 and a root-mean-square-error of prediction (RMSEP) of 0.246 log10μg TP l−1, while alternative models have RMSEP > 0.27. Deletion of two samples with uncharacteristic species composition and environmental conditions improved performance of the mean annual TP model (r2jack= 0.74; RMSEP = 0.233 log10μg TP l−1). Comparison with other published diatom-TP calibration models indicates that this model performs relatively well, with possible contributing factors including the extensive characterisation of TP (with an average 15 determinations making up the annual mean) and the dominance of planktonic diatoms in most sites. Downcore application of the model will allow the reconstruction of reservoir nutrient histories since commissioning, and thus provide a basis for understanding and management of reservoirs.

Canonical correspondence analysis Diatom Palaeolimnology Reservoirs Total phosphorus Transfer function Variance partitioning 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Tibby
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Palynology and Palaeoecology, School of Geography and Environmental ScienceMonash UniversityMelbourneAustralia

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