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Tag: phytoplankton

Phytoplankton perform photosynthesis, bloom beneath Arctic sea ice

Phytoplankton perform photosynthesis, bloom beneath Arctic sea ice

Science
Nov. 19 (UPI) -- Phytoplankton, tiny single-celled algae, anchor marine food webs throughout Earth's oceans. Now, new research suggests the tiny free-floating microorganisms play a central role in the functioning Arctic marine ecosystem. For decades, scientists assumed phytoplankton in the Arctic go dormant during the winter and early spring, proliferating only after Arctic sea ice begins to recede during the summer. Advertisement But a new review of the scientific literature on the subject -- published Thursday in the journal Frontiers in Marine Science -- suggests phytoplankton continue to perform photosynthesis and bloom beneath Arctic sea ice. "There was a long-standing assumption that what was happening under the sea ice in the water column was almost 'on pause' during the polar nigh...
Satellite spots springtime phytoplankton bloom off New Zealand coast

Satellite spots springtime phytoplankton bloom off New Zealand coast

Science
Nov. 15 (UPI) -- Phytoplankton are proliferating along the coast of New Zealand's South Island. The bloom was photographed this week by the camera on NASA's Aqua satellite. The space agency shared the image on Wednesday.While temperatures drop and days lengthen on the north half of Earth to the equator, the Southern Hemisphere is awakening to spring. The warming temperatures and increased sunlight can fuel phytoplankton blooms.Phytoplankton serve as the vital base for all marine food chains. But phytoplankton communities are being affected by climate change, and many scientists are concerned the shifts could disrupt ocean ecosystems.Recent tests proved single-celled algae are significantly affected by changes to temperature and CO2 levels.Another study showed different types of algae could...