Lehrter, J. C.. University of Alabama, lehrt001@bama.ua.edu
Pennock, J. C.. Dauphin Island Sea Lab/University of Alabama, jpennock@jaguar1.usouthal.edu
Cowan, J. L.. Dauphin Island Sea Lab, jwcowan@jaguar1.usouthal.edu

 
CARBON, NITROGEN AND PHOSPHORUS DYNAMICS IN A PULSED RIVER-DOMINATED ESTUARY: MOBILE BAY, ALABAMA (USA)
 
Large, physically dynamic systems such as Mobile Bay, Alabama are highly variable in space and time. This variability presents difficulties when attempting to quantify the role of biogeochemical processes in regulating the response of estuarine water quality to anthropogenic stresses. In this study, we analyze a six-year data set of hydrographic and water quality parameters from 31 stations in Alabama coastal waters (Mobile Bay, Mississippi Sound, and the adjacent Gulf of Mexico) to examine biogeochemical dynamics in the system. In order to interpret the observed variability in the data, we utilize principal component (PCA) and cluster analyses to identify distinct regions within the estuary. PCA yields five principal components that explain 71.7% of the original parameters' variance. Cluster analysis is based on PCA generated factor scores and is used to group field stations into biogeochemically similar regions. These regions display carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus dynamics that are distinct from each other and defined by the degree of river influence, light availability, phytoplankton biomass and nutrient regeneration in each region.
 
Day: Friday, Feb. 5
Time: 08:45 - 09:00am
Location: Eldorado Hotel
 
Code: CS57FR0845E