Relating plankton assemblages to environmental variables using instruments towed by ships-of-opportunity
Lindley, J.A. and Williams, R. (1994) Relating plankton assemblages to environmental variables using instruments towed by ships-of-opportunity. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 107 (3). pp. 245-262. ISSN 0171-8630
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Undulating Oceanographic Recorders (UORs) and Continuous Plankton Recorders (CPRs) equipped with a suite of sensors were towed by merchant vessels in the North Sea between 1988 and 1991, recording a range of environmental variables. These were used to interpret the results of analyses of the plankton taken on CPR tows off the northeast coast of the UK in 1989 and in the Skagerrak and Kattegat in July 1988 and through 1989. Correlations were found between the biota and the environmental variables. The tidal front off the northeast coast of the UK and the front between the low salinity water in the Kattegat and the higher salinity water in the Skagerrak were dominant factors correlating with the distribution of the plankton assemblages. Discontinuities, defining the positions of the fronts, in the values of physical variables (temperature and, where measured, salinity and turbidity) were closely identified with geographical divisions between plankton assemblages. Measures of irradiance were found to be important on several occasions, presumably due to diel migrations of the zooplankton.
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