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The eastern extent of seasonal iron limitation in the high latitude North Atlantic Ocean

The eastern extent of seasonal iron limitation in the high latitude North Atlantic Ocean
The eastern extent of seasonal iron limitation in the high latitude North Atlantic Ocean

The availability of iron (Fe) can seasonally limit phytoplankton growth in the High Latitude North Atlantic (HLNA), greatly reducing the efficiency of the biological carbon pump. However, the spatial extent of seasonal iron limitation is not yet known. We present autumn nutrient and dissolved Fe measurements, combined with microphytoplankton distribution, of waters overlying the Hebridean (Scottish) shelf break. A distinct biogeochemical divide was observed, with Fe deficient surface waters present beyond the shelf break, much further eastwards than previously recognised. Due to along and on-shelf circulation, the Hebridean shelf represents a much-localised source of Fe, which does not fertilise the wider HLNA. Shelf sediments are generally thought to supply large quantities of Fe to overlying waters. However, for this Fe to influence upper-ocean biogeochemical cycling, efficient off-shelf transport mechanisms are required. This work challenges the view that the oceanic surface waters in close proximity to continental margins are iron replete with respect to marine primary production demands.

2045-2322
1-12
Birchill, A.J.
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Hartner, N.T.
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Kunde, K.
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Siemering, B.
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Daniels, C.
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González-Santana, D.
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Milne, A.
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Ussher, S.J.
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Worsfold, P.J.
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Leopold, K.
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Painter, S.C.
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Lohan, M.C.
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Birchill, A.J.
d369bd78-52d0-4770-ab67-37137bc3da2b
Hartner, N.T.
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Kunde, K.
71069d95-19b5-45eb-a571-81103caf515d
Siemering, B.
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Daniels, C.
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González-Santana, D.
e603ade7-49a1-4969-aa28-503cd4e9fdf9
Milne, A.
e496b797-6206-414e-8f50-d2f2ce260fc9
Ussher, S.J.
ac1386f0-f0a1-4663-8fc5-26dbc178327b
Worsfold, P.J.
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Leopold, K.
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Painter, S.C.
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Lohan, M.C.
6ca10597-2d0f-40e8-8e4f-7619dfac5088

Birchill, A.J., Hartner, N.T., Kunde, K., Siemering, B., Daniels, C., González-Santana, D., Milne, A., Ussher, S.J., Worsfold, P.J., Leopold, K., Painter, S.C. and Lohan, M.C. (2019) The eastern extent of seasonal iron limitation in the high latitude North Atlantic Ocean. Scientific Reports, 9 (1), 1-12, [1435]. (doi:10.1038/s41598-018-37436-3).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The availability of iron (Fe) can seasonally limit phytoplankton growth in the High Latitude North Atlantic (HLNA), greatly reducing the efficiency of the biological carbon pump. However, the spatial extent of seasonal iron limitation is not yet known. We present autumn nutrient and dissolved Fe measurements, combined with microphytoplankton distribution, of waters overlying the Hebridean (Scottish) shelf break. A distinct biogeochemical divide was observed, with Fe deficient surface waters present beyond the shelf break, much further eastwards than previously recognised. Due to along and on-shelf circulation, the Hebridean shelf represents a much-localised source of Fe, which does not fertilise the wider HLNA. Shelf sediments are generally thought to supply large quantities of Fe to overlying waters. However, for this Fe to influence upper-ocean biogeochemical cycling, efficient off-shelf transport mechanisms are required. This work challenges the view that the oceanic surface waters in close proximity to continental margins are iron replete with respect to marine primary production demands.

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s41598-018-37436-3 - Version of Record
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Accepted/In Press date: 25 November 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 5 February 2019
Published date: 1 December 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 428253
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/428253
ISSN: 2045-2322
PURE UUID: 45b5813e-7a72-40b0-b737-aebbe45bf970
ORCID for M.C. Lohan: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5340-3108

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Date deposited: 19 Feb 2019 17:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 02:02

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Contributors

Author: A.J. Birchill
Author: N.T. Hartner
Author: K. Kunde
Author: B. Siemering
Author: C. Daniels
Author: D. González-Santana
Author: A. Milne
Author: S.J. Ussher
Author: P.J. Worsfold
Author: K. Leopold
Author: S.C. Painter
Author: M.C. Lohan ORCID iD

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