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A fifteen year study of phytoplankton biomass and composition in the Nanticoke Region of Long Point Bay Lake Erie

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Title: A fifteen year study of phytoplankton biomass and composition in the Nanticoke Region of Long Point Bay Lake Erie
Author: Hopkins, G. J.; Lea, G.
Abstract: Changes in abundance, taxonomic composition and the seasonal succession of phytoplankton have been evaluated at seven stations in the vicinity of Nanticoke, east of Long Point Bay, Lake Erie from 1969 to 1983. No phytoplankton samples were collected in 1979. Quantitative measurements of phytoplankton were recorded as Areal Standard Units per millilitre (A.S.U. per mL). The 14-year mean value was 401 A.S.U. per mL. Annual means over the 15 year period varied from a low of 224 A.S.U. per mL in 1959 to a high of 606 A.S.U. per mL in 1978. Seasonal succession patterns and biomass levels showed fluctuation expressing unimodal, bimodal and even trimodal peaks from station to station and year to year. 1969 and 1974 had abnormally low levels of phytoplankton biomass while 1970 and 1978 showed mean biomass values that were exceptionally higher than the 14-year mean. A total of 255 taxa were recorded during the 15 years of study, 35 of which were present during all years. Temperature data collected at the same stations suggested that 1970 and 1973 were years in which the water was slightly warmer hut followed very closely a normal seasonal curve ranging from 5EC in April to a maximum of 22EC in August. A comparison of seasonal succession of phytoplankton to temperature did not show any direct or inverse relationship to years in which one or the other parameter deviated from the normal pattern. Due to the similarity of the algal community in its year-to-year seasonal development and taxonomic composition, the fourteen years of data presented in this study should provide a sound data base for future comparisons on nearshore phytoplankton in Lake Erie.
Date: 1985
Rights: Queen's Printer for Ontario, Crown Copyright, Non-Commercial Use Permitted
Rights Holder: Queen's Printer for Ontario

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