Occurrence of the toxic dinoflagellate Ostreopsis cf. ovata in relation with environmental factors in Monaco (NW Mediterranean)

Stéphanie Cohu, Thierry Thibaut, Luisa Mangialajo, Jean-Philippe Labat, Ornella Passafiume, Aurélie Blanfuné, Nathalie Simon, Jean-Michel Cottalorda, Rodolphe Lemée
Marine Pollution Bulletin 2011, 62 (12): 2681-91
To study environment characteristics favoring the toxic benthic dinoflagellate Ostreopsis cf. ovata, a survey was conducted in Monaco (NW Mediterranean Sea), in summers 2007 and 2008. Epiphytic and planktonic blooms occurred almost simultaneously and a high variation of abundances at low spatial scales was observed. An early and very marked bloom occurred in 2007, compared to a later and less abundant development in 2008. These distinct patterns in bloom timing corresponded with very different hydroclimatic scenarios in 2007 (hot spring and relatively cold summer) and 2008 (standard year compared to the median year profile estimated with data from 1995 to 2008). No clear impacts of summer seawater temperature, rainfall or nutrient concentrations were evident. Strong wind may favor the dispersal of benthic and planktonic cells. Our study suggests that further investigations are needed to examine the potential role of Ostreopsis nutritional mode (i.e. autotrophy vs. mixotrophy).

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