Long-term Ecological Research (LTER) on the Antarctic Marine Ecosystem: Microbiology and Carbon Flux
The annual advance and retreat of pack ice may be the major physical determinant of spatial/temporal changes in the structure and function of antarctic marine communities. Interannual cycles and/or trends in the annual extent of pack ice may also have significant effects on all levels of the food web, from total annual primary production to breeding success in seabirds. Historical records indicate a 6 to 8 year cycle in the maximum extent of pack ice in the winter. During this decade winters were colder in 1980 and 1981, and again in 1986 and 1987. In order to understand the interactions between pack ice and ecosystem dynamics, especially the influences of the well- documented interannual variability in ice cover on representative populations, a long-term ecological research (LTER) site has been established in the Antarctic Peninsula region near Palmer Station. The LTER project, will conduct comprehensive measurements of ice-dominated ecosystems in this region with a focus on primary production, krill populations and swarms and seabirds. A primary emphasis will be placed on the development of ecosystem models that will provide a predictive capability for issues related to global environmental change. This proposal will add to the existing LTER project detailed studies of the biogeochemical cycling of carbon and associated bioelements. The microbiology and carbon flux component of LTER will provide measurements of a suite of core parameters relevant to the carbon cycle and will test several hypotheses pertaining to carbon flux, including bacterial productivity and nutrient regeneration.
AMD - DIF Record(s)
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Platforms and Instruments
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