Menezes, S. University of Rhode Island, Graduate School of Oceanography, sunshine@gsosun1.gso.uri.edu
Hargraves, P. University of Rhode Island, Graduate School of Oceanography, pharg@gsosun1.gso.uri.edu

 
COMMUNITY TRENDS AMONG NANOPLANKTON IN THE PETTAQUAMSCUTT RIVER ESTUARY, RHODE ISLAND, U.S.A.
 
Nanoplankton comprise an important component of microbial loop dynamics. There are innumerable kinds of heterotrophic and mixotrophic flagellates within this size fraction that mediate the transfer of carbon from bacteria to higher trophic levels. Therefore an understanding of the nanoplankton community structure may be a preliminary indicator of the nature of microbial loop interactions within a given ecosystem. There are very few data, however, regarding annual trends among the nanoplankton. A seasonal survey of nanoplankton biodiversity was begun to clarify taxonomic trends in the Pettaquamscutt River Estuary, Rhode Island, U.S.A. This ecosystem represents an interesting and convenient study site, as it is a small (~9 km-long), easily accessible area, with a salinity gradient ranging from ~5 ppt to ~32 ppt, exclusive of groundwater intrusion. The Pettaquamscutt River is tidally flushed by Rhode Island Sound to the south, and receives surface freshwater input primarily from Gilbert Stuart Stream to the north, with lesser amounts from two brooks to the south. Preliminary trends in community parameters such as species diversity, functional (trophic) diversity and biomass, as well as physical characteristics are reported here for each of four stations along the salinity gradient of the estuary.
 
Day: Wednesday, Feb. 3
Time: Poster
Location: Sweeney Center
 
Code: CS60WE0745S