Zooplankton growth, respiration and grazing on the Australian margins of the tropical Indian and Pacific Oceans

McKinnon, A. David, Doyle, Jason, Duggan, Samantha, Logan, Murray, Lønborg, Christian, and Brinkman, Richard (2015) Zooplankton growth, respiration and grazing on the Australian margins of the tropical Indian and Pacific Oceans. PLoS ONE, 10 (10). e0140012.

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Abstract

The specific activity of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (spAARS), an index of growth rate, and of the electron transport system (spETS), an index of respiration, was measured in three size fractions (73–150 μm, >150 μm and >350 μm) of zooplankton during five cruises to tropical coastal waters of the Kimberley coast (North West Australia) and four cruises to waters of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR; North East Australia). The N-specific biomass of plankton was 3–4-fold higher in the Kimberley than on the GBR in all 3 size classes: Kimberley 1.27, 3.63, 1.94 mg m-3; GBR 0.36, 0.88 and 0.58 mg m-3 in the 73–150 μm, >150 μm and >350 μm size classes, respectively. Similarly, spAARS activity in the Kimberley was greater than that of the GBR: 88.4, 132.2, and 147.6 nmol PPi hr-1 mg protein -1 in the Kimberley compared with 71.7, 82.0 and 83.8 nmol PPi hr-1 mg protein -1 in the GBR, for the 73–150 μm, >150 μm and >350 μm size classes, respectively. Specific ETS activity showed similar differences in scale between the two coasts: 184.6, 148.8 and 92.2 μL O2 hr-1 mg protein-1 in the Kimberley, against 86.5, 88.3 and 71.3 μL O2 hr-1 mg protein-1 in the GBR. On the basis of these measurements, we calculated that >150 μm zooplankton grazing accounted for 7% of primary production in the Kimberley and 8% in GBR waters. Area-specific respiration by >73 μm zooplankton was 7-fold higher in the Kimberley than on the GBR and production by >150 μm zooplankton was of the order of 278 mg C m-2 d-1 in the Kimberley and 42 mg C m-2 d-1 on the GBR. We hypothesize that the much stronger physical forcing on the North West shelf is the principal driver of higher rates in the west than in the east of the continent.

Item ID: 41921
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1932-6203
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Copyright: © 2015 McKinnon et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited

Funders: Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS), Western Australian Marine Science Institute (WAMSI), Australian Research Council (ARC), Great Barrier Reef Foundation (GBRF), Bureau of Meteorology, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Queensland Government, BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance, Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF)
Projects and Grants: ARC DP1095294
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2015 17:43
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 100%
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