MEPS 379:13-22 (2009)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07883

Contribution by different marine bacterial communities to particulate beam attenuation

Martin A. Montes-Hugo1,*, Hugh Ducklow2, Oscar M. Schofield1

1Coastal Ocean Observation, Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University, New Jersey 08901-8521, USA
2The Ecosystems Center, Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts 02543, USA

ABSTRACT: Contribution of heterotrophic marine bacteria (HB) to the particulate beam attenuation coefficient (cp) was estimated as a function of latitude in diverse marine regions. Calculations were based on surface measurements (0 to 20 m depth) of bacterial abundance and biovolume, physiooptical empirical relationships, and light scattering models. Relative contribution of spherical HB to cp (cHB/cp) was commonly below 10%, and slightly increased (~3%) when bacterial shape was assumed to be cylindrical. HB accounted for a larger fraction of cp magnitude at lower latitudes because of the greater abundance of bacteria. HB explained about a third of cp spatial variability in Antarctic (Antarctic Polar Front, Ross Sea) and non-polar (equatorial Pacific Ocean, Arabian Sea) oceanic regions.


KEY WORDS: Heterotrophic marine bacteria · Particulate beam attenuation coefficient · Light scattering · Mie theory · Polar environments


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Cite this article as: Montes-Hugo MA, Ducklow H, Schofield OM (2009) Contribution by different marine bacterial communities to particulate beam attenuation. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 379:13-22. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07883

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