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An evaluation of the importance of algae and vascular plants in salt marsh food webs using stable isotope analyses
  • Published Date:
    1988
Filetype[PDF - 1.84 MB]


Details:
  • Corporate Authors:
    Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium ; National Sea Grant Program (U.S.) ;
  • Funding:
    Funding: NOAA Office of Sea Grant; grant number: NA85AA-D-SG005; project number: R/LR-18;
  • Document Type:
  • Description:
    "In order to elucidate the flow of organic matter and trophic relationships within Graveline Bay Marsh and bayou system, an irregularly flooded Mississippi salt marsh, stable isotope ratios of carbon, sulfur, and nitrogen were measured from March 1987 through September 1988. The stable isotope data indicates that the major food sources for the invertebrate and fish fauna of the Graveline system are the edaphic and planktonic algae; the contribution of the vascular plants appears to be minor at best. This study represents the first documentation of the importance of edaphic algae in salt marsh food webs. Comparisons with multiple stable isotope work carried out in Massachusetts and Georgia salt marshes revealed an increasing dependence on planktonic and benthic algae by salt marsh consumers as one moves south along the Atlantic coast and then west to the Gulf coast. Since benthic algae are highly productive, are the preferred food source of many estuarine consumers, and are easily suspended to become members of the phytoplankton, this floral component can no longer be ignored in estuarine food web studies"--National Sea Grant Library publication website.

  • Supporting Files:
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