Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/bgd-10-18151-2013
https://doi.org/10.5194/bgd-10-18151-2013
22 Nov 2013
 | 22 Nov 2013
Status: this preprint was under review for the journal BG but the revision was not accepted.

Technical Note: Constraining stable carbon isotope values of microphytobenthos (C3 photosynthesis) in the Arctic for application to food web studies

L. E. Oxtoby, J. T. Mathis, L. W. Juranek, and M. J. Wooller

Abstract. Microphytobenthos (MPB) tends to be omitted as a possible carbon source to higher trophic level consumers in high latitude marine food web models that use stable isotopes. Here, we used previously published relationships relating the concentration of aqueous carbon dioxide ([CO2]aq), the stable carbon isotopic composition of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) (δ13CDIC), and algal growth rates (μ) to estimate the stable carbon isotope composition of MPB-derived total organic carbon (TOC) (δ13Cp) and fatty acid (FA) biomarkers (δ13CFA). We measured [CO2]aq and δ13CDIC values from bottom water at sampling locations in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas (n = 18), which ranged from 17 to 72 mmol kg–1 and −0.1 to 1.4 ‰ (0.8 ± 0.4‰, mean ±1 s.d.), respectively. We combined these field measurements with a set of stable carbon isotopic fractionation factors reflecting differences in algal taxonomy and physiology to determine δ13Cp and δ13CFA values. Theδ13Cp and δ13CFA values for a mixed eukaryotic algal community were estimated to be −23.6 ± 0.4‰ and −30.6 ± 0.4‰, respectively. These values were similar to our estimates for Phaeodactylum tricornutum (δ13Cp = −23.9 ± 0.4‰, δ13CFA = −30.9 ± 0.4‰), a pennate diatom likely to be a dominant MPB taxon. Taxon-specific differences were observed between a centric diatom (Porosira glacialis, δ13Cp = −20.0 ± 1.6‰), a marine haptophyte (Emiliana huxleyi, δ13Cp = −22.7 ± 0.5‰), and a cyanobacterium (Synechococcus sp., δ13Cp = −16.2 ± 0.4‰) at μ = 0.1 d−1. δ13Cp and δ13CFA values increased by ≃ 2.5‰ for the mixed algal consortium and for P. tricornutum when growth rates were increased from 0.1 to 1.4 d−1. We compared our estimates of δ13Cp and δ13CFA values for MPB with previous measurements of δ13CTOC and δ13CFA values for other carbon sources in the Arctic, including ice-derived, terrestrial, and pelagic organic matter. We found that MPB values were significantly distinct from terrestrial and ice-derived carbon sources. However, MPB values overlapped with pelagic sources, which may result in MPB being overlooked as a significant source of carbon in the marine food web.

L. E. Oxtoby, J. T. Mathis, L. W. Juranek, and M. J. Wooller
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
L. E. Oxtoby, J. T. Mathis, L. W. Juranek, and M. J. Wooller
L. E. Oxtoby, J. T. Mathis, L. W. Juranek, and M. J. Wooller

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