Faroe shelf bloom phenology: The importance of ocean-to-shelf silicate fluxes

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The highly variable primary production on the spatially confined Faroe shelf has been comprehensively monitored since the early 1990s. Utilizing these data together with output from a realistic high-resolution numerical model, we here give a unique description of an interplay between bloom phenology in a productive temperate well mixed Central Shelf and the mixed layer dynamics in a surrounding seasonally stratified Outer Shelf. There is a shift to a persistently stratified Outer Shelf during late May – early June, which thereafter holds the highest phytoplankton biomass and becomes nutrient limited in the upper layer. The Central Shelf chlorophyll accumulation becomes impeded around this transition, which is coincident with strong silicate drawdown. Subsequently, a succession of blooms can occur, and these coincide with nutrient enriching erosion of the Outer Shelf stratification and become terminated by re-establishments of the stratification. We hypothesize that the mixed layer dynamics of the Outer Shelf regulates the lateral nutrient fluxes to the
Central Shelf.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-53
Number of pages11
JournalContinental Shelf Research
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2017


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