Distributions of Pigments and Primary Production in a Gulf-Stream Meander
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An investigation was made of physical effects of Gulf Stream meandering on the vertical and horizontal distributions of photosynthetic pigments and primary production. Cruises were conducted in the vicinity of a meander east of 73-degrees-W and north of 37-degrees-N from September 21 to October 5 (leg 1) and October 12-21, 1988 (leg 2), on the R/V Cape Hatteras. Relationships of photosynthesis (normalized to chlorophyll) to irradiance (P-1) did not show large horizontal variation, and water column composite P-I curves from leg 1 and leg 2 were similar. Therefore a single P-I curve derived from pooled data was used to model distributions of primary production. Distributions of photosynthetic pigments were characterized on the basis of in vivo fluorescence profiles and empirical relationships with extracted pigment concentrations. Subsurface irradiance was described using a spectral irradiance model. Cross sections of the Gulf Stream revealed consistently higher pigment concentrations and primary production on the slope water side. Along-stream variations in pigment distributions and primary production were apparently related to density structure influenced by meander circulation. Such variations were less pronounced during leg 2. which came after a transition from a well-defined meander interacting with a warm-core ring (leg 1) to a more linear stream (leg 2). Higher water-column-integrated primary production during leg 2 was attributed to mixing-induced nutrient injection and redistribution of chlorophyll in the photic zone.
LOHRENZ, SE, JJ CULLEN, DA PHINNEY, DB OLSON, et al. 1993. "Distributions of Pigments and Primary Production in a Gulf-Stream Meander." Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans 98(C8): 14545-14560. DOI:10.1029/93JC00678