Modeling analysis of the effect of iron enrichment on dimethyl sulfide dynamics in the NE Pacific (SERIES experiment)

Le Clainche, Yvonnick and Levasseur, Maurice and Vezina, Alain and Bouillon, Rene-Christian and Merzouk, Anissa and Michaud, Sonia and Scarratt, Michael and Wong, Chi Shing and Rivkin, Richard B. and Boyd, Philip W. and Harrison, Paul J. and Miller, William L. and Law, Cliff S. and Saucier, Francois J. (2006) Modeling analysis of the effect of iron enrichment on dimethyl sulfide dynamics in the NE Pacific (SERIES experiment). Journal of Geophysical Research, 111 (1). pp. 1-15. ISSN 2156-2202

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The large-scale iron enrichment conducted in the NE Pacific during the Subarctic Ecosystem Response to Iron Enrichment Study (SERIES) triggered a phytoplankton bloom dominated successively by nanophytoplankton and large diatoms. During the first 14 days, surface dimethyl sulfide (DMS) levels increased both inside (up to 22 nmol L-1) and outside (up to 19 nmol L-1) the patch, with no consistent Fe effect. Later, DMS concentrations became sixfold lower inside the patch than outside. In this study, we used a DMS budget module embedded in a one-dimensional ocean turbulence model to investigate the contribution of the interacting physical, photochemical, and biological processes to this particular DMS response. Temporal variations in biological net DMS production were reconstructed using an inverse modeling approach. Our results show that short-term (days) variations in both the physical processes (i.e., turbulent mixing and ventilation) and the biological cycling of DMS are needed to explain the time evolution of DMS concentrations both outside and inside the Fe-enriched patch. The biological net DMS production was generally high (up to 0.35 nmol L-1 h-1) and comparable outside and inside the patch during the first 10 days, corresponding to the observed accumulation of DMS inside and outside the patch. Later, it became negative (net DMS biological consumption) inside the patch, suggesting a change in dimethylsulfoniopropionate bacterial metabolism. This study stresses the importance of short-term variations in biological processes and their sensitivity to the physical environment in shaping the DMS response to iron enrichment.

Item Type: Article
Item ID: 498
Keywords: Bacteria; Ecosystems; Iron; Marine biology; Mathematical models; Metabolism; Oceanography; Photochemical reactions; Turbulence; dimethylsulfide; enrichment; iron; modeling; nutrient dynamics
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Ocean Sciences
Date: 8 January 2006
Date Type: Publication

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