Atmospheric forcing and photo-acclimation of phytoplankton fall blooms in Hudson Bay

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • Pulses of ocean primary productivity during the fall season are frequent in the mid-latitudes when ocean cooling and wind-driven turbulence erode the surface stratification and allow the injection of nutrients into the euphotic zone. This phenomenon is often referred to as a phytoplankton fall bloom, and can play an essential role in the survival of marine species during winter. In Hudson Bay, we found that pelagic fall blooms are triggered when the convective mixing, forced mainly by atmospheric cooling and to a lesser extent to wind-driven turbulence, expands the mixed layer, ventilates the pycnocline, and likely erodes the nitracline. Ocean color observations were used to assess the seasonal variability of phytoplankton photoacclimation state from the ratio of phytoplankton carbon (Cphy) to chlorophyll-a concentration ([chla]). Cphy was estimated using the satellite-derived particulate backscattering coefficient (bbp)aftersubtractionofthe non-algal backscattering background.We found a systematic increase in Cphy and Cphy:[chla] from mid-summer to fall season indicating that fall blooms are potentially productive in term of organic carbon fixation.

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    Article (Published)
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    Attribution 4.0 International
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Barbedo, L*; Belanger, S; Lukovich, J; Myers, P; Tremblay, J-E;. (2022). Atmospheric forcing and photoacclimation of phytoplankton fall blooms in Hudson Bay. Elementa: Science of the Antropocene.