Seasonal Variations in Primary Productivity and Biomass of Phytoplankton in Geoje-Hansan Bay on the Southern Coast of Korea
Dongyoung Kim, Young-Jae Lee, Hee Yoon Kang, Kee-Young Kwon, Won-Chan Lee, Jung Hyun Kwak
Ocean Sci. J. (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12601-019-0005-y
Phytoplankton constitutes an important dietary item of oysters in suspended longline aquaculture systems. Primary productivity and the community structure of phytoplankton, as well as hydrographic and nutritional conditions of the water column, were monitored monthly in Geoje-Hansan Bay on the southern coast of Korea between July 2013 and July 2014 to determine the seasonal variation patterns of productivity and structures of phytoplankton assemblages. All measured physicochemical and biological components exhibited temporal variabilities common to all four sampling sites within the bay system. The hydrographic features were characterized by a summer stratified and fall–winter wellmixed structure of the water column. Daily primary productivity in the bay (0.16–2.88 g C m–2 d–1) peaked in summer; it displayed a unimodal cycle, and the most dominant phytoplankton group shifted from diatoms to dinoflagellates. Canonical correspondence analysis, based on environmental factors and the phytoplankton community, enabled the identification of seasonal patterns of phytoplankton assemblage in relation to temporal variations of hydrographic and nutritional conditions. Results indicated that increase of the watercolumn stability and enhanced nutrient input by freshwater discharge during the summer monsoon and possible upward flux from bottom sediment led to the peaking primary productivity and diatomdominated community during that time, supporting high annual productivity (371 g C m–2 yr–1). Our findings suggest that seasonal properties of hydrodynamics and nutritional conditions play a key role in determining the primary productivity and structuring of the phytoplankton community. Summer peaks in productivity and diatom dominance most likely ultimately determine oyster growth and the final success of aquaculture.