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Benthic Oxygen Production in the Choptank Estuary By

By Choptank Estuary and Christopher Roberts Chick


This study estimates the proportion of microphytobenthic (MPB) primary production to total primary production in the Chesapeake Bay using oxygen fluxes from sediment cores. Flux rates ranged from 6000 µmol O2 m-2 h-1 in the light to-3800 µmol O2 m-2 h-1 in the dark. Using this data, we developed multiple linear regressions using sediment grain type and depth to predict oxygen production seasonally. Using ArcMap software, we estimated summer average benthic daily net production to be 123 ± 962 mg O2 m-2 d-1 between 0-3 meters and winter was estimated to be 152 ± 413 mg O2 m-2 d-1. For spring we had a weaker relationship, but benthic production was-257 ± 123 mg O2 m-2 d-1. A proportion of benthic to pelagic primary production was created, estimating that MPB provide approximately 12 % of total primary production in the Chesapeake Bay

Year: 2009
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