Marine ecology

Here you will find links to my marine ecology research. This section will always be expanding.

Anomalies of the CPR’s Phytoplankton Colour Index (PCI) indicate a clear basin-scale increase in phytoplankton biomass between 1958 and 2010.

Is there a decline in marine phytoplankton? In 2010 a team from Dalhousie University published a high-profile Nature paper reporting a major decline in global phytoplankton biomass. Data from the Continuous Plankton Recorder survey, however, and other multidecadal time-series plankton monitoring programmes disagree with the 2010 findings, highlighting the importance of using consistent measurements when estimating long-term trends.


235HE-24_q033 Ehux image credit Hallegraeff

Coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi on a CPR silk. Photo by G. Hallegraeff.

Long-term trends in calcifying plankton and pH in the North Sea Monitoring programmes such as the CPR are crucial for establishing baselines and recognising futures changes in the plankton which may be linked with ocean acidification. CPR data reveal differing long-term trends in North Sea calcifiers, despite the apparent decline in pH since the mid 1990s.

Climate exacerbates eutrophication in the North Sea One of the key challenges for science is the difficulty in separating the impacts of anthropogenic pressures from those caused by climate change. This research constructs a new, spatially referenced, 5 decade, quantitative chlorophyll dataset which, when explored in Here you will find links to my marine ecology research. This section will always be expanding.conjunction with environmental and nutrient data, reveals a new plankton regime in the North Sea, and the drivers behind the observed changes.

Long-term responses of North Atlantic calcifying plankton to climate change Data from the CPR suggest that annual SST had a more direct statistical effect on calcifying organisms than the pH during the period 1960-2009. This supports earlier findings which suggest that we should be cautious in the attribution of current changes in calcifying plankton to ocean acidification because plankton are also highly sensitive to temperature as well as other physical and chemical factors.




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