Environment and Algal Nutrition

  • Francisco J. L. Gordillo
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 219)


In this chapter, algal nutrient dynamics are considered from an ecophysiological viewpoint in which different resource acquisition mechanisms of algae facing different environmental conditions are reviewed in order to better understand how they meet their nutritional needs. C is considered as “just another nutrient” since it shares many characteristics with the rest of major nutrients. In this contribution, the relationship between algal nutrition and their environment is considered, including the physical aspects such as water movements and seasonality. Nutrient availability is discussed in terms of environmental conditioning of N and P supply for storage and growth, and different species-specific metabolic strategies are presented. Mechanisms presented include switching the photosynthetic energy investment from C to N and P acquisition during the course of the day, or from summer to winter. Different mechanisms of resource utilization, such as the preferential use of ammonium over nitrate, in some but not all species, allow for the different species to coexist at the same time in the same community, and this strategy of partitioning brings a more effective resource use, i.e., better transfer to the whole food web. The use of isotope discrimination as a source marker and the application of nutrient removal by seaweeds are also discussed.


Ammonium Uptake Redfield Ratio Benson Cycle Macroalgal Growth Benthic Plant 
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.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de EcologíaUniversidad de MálagaMálagaSpain

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