Final Report: ECOHAB:Florida – An In-depth Study of Toxic Dinoflagellate Karenia brevis (formerly known as Gymnodinium breve)

EPA Grant Number: R827085
Title: ECOHAB:Florida – An In-depth Study of Toxic Dinoflagellate Karenia brevis (formerly known as Gymnodinium breve)
Investigators: Steidinger, Karen A. , Dolah, Francis Van , Fahnenstiel, Gary , Fournie, Jack , Janowitz, Jerald , Kamykowski, Daniel , Kirkpatrick, Gary J. , Landsberg, Jan H. , Lohrenz, Steven , Millie, David F. , Neely, Merrie Beth , Pierce, Richard , Redalje, Donald , Schofield, Oscar M.E. , Tester, Patricia A. , Tomas, Carmelo R. , Vargo, Gabriel A.
Institution: Florida Marine Research Institute , Mote Marine Laboratory , National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration , North Carolina State University , Oregon State University , Rutgers University - New Brunswick , U. S. Environmental Protection Agency , University of South Florida , University of Southern Mississippi
EPA Project Officer: Hiscock, Michael
Project Period: October 15, 1998 through September 30, 2002 (Extended to September 30, 2003)
Project Amount: $975,000
RFA: Ecology and Oceanography of Harmful Algal Blooms (1998) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Water Quality , Harmful Algal Blooms , Water , Ecosystems

Objective:

This program is part of a larger program called Ecology and Oceanography of Harmful Algal Blooms in Florida (ECOHAB:Florida) that includes this study as well as physical oceanography, circulation patterns, and shelf scale modeling for predicting the occurrence and transport of Karenia brevis red tides. The physical oceanography aspect of the program was funded under a separate grant by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and operated by the University of South Florida, Department of Marine Science. The coordinated programs provide data to do large and small scale modeling of blooms.

The objectives of the project were to: (1) determine the interactions of cellular, behavioral, life cycle, and community regulation processes with environmental forcing factors during stages of bloom development; (2) model the biophysical interactions of K. brevis red tides on the West Florida Shelf at small scales of < 1 km at the physiological level of K. brevis interaction with its chemical and physical habitat (as contrasted to a larger scale biophysical 3-day model also being developed); (3) determine the sources of inorganic and organic nutrients that allow growth and persistence of large K. brevis blooms in coastal waters; and (4) determine the production, occurrence, fate, and effects of brevetoxins in the environment during and after K. brevis blooms.

Summary/Accomplishments (Outputs/Outcomes):

Process Cruises

Dr. Kirkpatrick and his colleagues coordinated two Process cruises during the reporting period, October 20–26, 2001 within the ECOHAB:Florida control volume and again September 5–12, 2002 aboard the research vessel (RV) Suncoaster off Sarasota. Both bloom patches were tracked with a Coastal Ocean Dynamics Experiment (CODE) drifter over consecutive days. Investigations by several ECOHAB:Florida principal investigators (PIs) were performed using the same experiments on photobiology and toxin production previously conducted during Process cruises. Distinct differences in diel intracellular toxin production were not found, but differences could have been masked by only a fraction of cells undergoing mitosis on any night. Because the second cruise occurred late in the funding period, no results have yet been received from investigators.

Monthly Offshore Transects

Dr. Kirkpatrick from Mote Marine Laboratory continued the final year of monthly small boat transects to 50 km offshore from Sarasota. These transects include conductivity, temperature, and depth (CTD) profiles and the collection of cell count, nutrient, chlorophyll a and other high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) pigments, light, dissolved oxygen, brevetoxin concentration, and trace element measurements. Continuous flow-through measurement of surface temperature, salinity, fluorescence, and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) were made between stations.

Dr. Pierce measured brevetoxin concentrations in the water along the Sarasota transect that were only detectable when 1 x 106 cells L-1 were found (intracellular toxins) or if a bloom was decaying with extracellular brevetoxin contributing to the measurements, perhaps as a result of interaction with lower salinity bay water. This corresponds to about 12 pg brevetoxin cell-1, consistent with previous measurements.

Cell concentrations from the transects are available on the Florida Marine Research Institute (FMRI) website at http://www.floridamarine.org Exit and hydrologic cross sections from both Process cruises and the Sarasota transects will soon be available on the Mote website
Hydrographic Cruises

Dr. Vargo and his staff conducted monthly synoptic cruises aboard the RV Bellows and Suncoaster to continue collecting vertical profiles of conductivity, temperature, density, and chlorophyll fluorescence at each of the > 70 stations. Various nutrient, live and preserved cell counts, and extracted chlorophyll measurements were made at every other station. Inorganic nutrient measurement and Trichodesmium sp. counts were made by others (HyCODE funding) during these cruises as well. Continuous measurements of surface temperature, salinity, turbidity, particle scattering, and fluorescence were made throughout the cruise via a flow through on deck system. Some files were averaged while others are stand alone measurements.

Bio-optics

Dr. Oscar Schofield’s specific objective during the award period was to use spectral signatures to discriminate phytoplankton taxa in vivo to detect red tides using remote sensing. During the October 2001 Process cruise, Dr. Schofield measured the maximum quantum yield for stable charge separations of photosystem II for natural populations of K. brevis using a Heixz-Walz PAM fluorometer, measured the hyperspectral reflectance using a Satlantic tethered spectral radiometer buoy (TSRB), and completed a full diel cycle of inherent optical property measurements of a vertically migrating natural population of K. brevis. Results indicate that the vertical migration of K. brevis dramatically shifts the spectral signature of remote sensing reflectance permitting the use K. brevis specific remote sensing algorithms.

Biological and Environmental Interactions That Lead to Bloom Development

Dr. Kamykowski and his collaborators developed a method to quantify the lipid content of previously collected samples of K. brevis stained with Nile Red using an epifluorescent microscope. This method also works with flow cytometry. Specially designed laboratory incubation systems were developed to better characterize the migration ability of K. brevis, specifically focusing on swimming behavior in response to temperature, interclonal consistency in nutrient chemotactic and photosynthetic responses. Drs. Kamykowski and Janowitz found that each of eight clonal cultures divided into two groups, one more light capable than the other. This suggests that different clones have different photoresponse capabilities. Interestingly, the Wilson clone represents the low photoresponse, but is widely used for physiological studies. Vertical shear may also be an important distinguishing factor in these subpopulations. A small scale biophysical model, previously developed, was modified to accommodate bloom development and transport in three dimensions. Dr. Kamykowski’s behavioral experiments are ongoing.

Drs. Lohrenz and Redalje received continued funding for their second year of research on the interactions of cellular, behavioral, live cycle, and community regulation processes with environmental forcing factors during stages of bloom development. The work to be conducted included studies of pigments that function in photobiological responses of phytoplankton communities using radioactive tracers, and to participate in the ECOHAB:Process cruises and conduct in situ and on deck experiments of the photosynthetic, physiological, and growth dynamics using natural light. Data generated from these studies was provided to Dr. Gary Kirkpatrick (Mote) for use in related work.

Drs. Lohrenz and Redalje found that vertically integrated primary production (IPP) was both higher in fall 2001 (IPP 0.92 ± 0.48 g C m-2 d-1) and more variable than during fall 2000 (IPP = 0.53 ± 0.07 g C m-2 d-1). Cell counts were much greater during fall 2001 (500–800 cells L-1 versus 100–400 cells L-1 for fall 2000), contributing to the greater production. Analyses continue for the fall 2002 Process cruise data, however earlier cruise data indicate carbon specific growth rates of 0.1–0.3 d-1. Carbon biomass values ranged from 20–30% of the surface particulate organic carbon (POC). Although POC remained fairly constant throughout the water column, phytoplankton C decreased steadily at depth. Microalgal POC, derived from radioactive isotope tracers, represents only a small amount of the water column POC. This means the blooms were not dominated by algal POC, which is currently being used to distinguish K. brevis blooms from other blooms using remote sensing.

Comparisons of on deck samples indicate that shallow and deep populations differentially incorporate radiolabelled 14C into proteins or lipids. Deep samples incorporated 14C into proteins much more than into lipids as compared to the surface samples. Experiments with nutrient additions and 14C incorporation were less clear, but suggested that the K. brevis populations encountered during the cruises were N limited. The investigators also found that K. brevis blooms dominated the total scattering in light, which held true even for migrating populations, and the ratio of backscattering coefficient to absorption at both 440 and 550 nm may be unique for these blooms. Drs. Lohrenz and Redalje presented these findings during one oral presentation for the Xth International Conference on Harmful Algae in St. Pete Beach, Florida, and their students presented two posters at the same conference on work funded by this project.

Data Management and Products

Much of the data are available to the PIs at the ECOHAB:Florida FTP site. Metadata from all PIs have been collected are also available on the FTP site. Access to the FTP site is via password. A web page for the general program is maintained with information relating to the ECOHAB:Florida program. Hydrologic data and cell counts from all synoptic cruises, transects and process cruises, in addition to all incidental measurements since 1954, are available on an updated CD ROM in Access Format. This CD ROM was distributed to all PIs at the Sanibel PI meeting in July 2002 and is available by request.


Journal Articles on this Report : 15 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other project views: All 80 publications 27 publications in selected types All 25 journal articles
Type Citation Project Document Sources
Journal Article Evens TJ, Kirkpatrick GJ, Millie DF, Chapman DJ, Schofield OME. Photophysiological responses of the toxic red-tide dinoflagellate Gymnodinium breve (Dinophyceae) under natural sunlight. Journal of Plankton Research 2001;23(11):1177-1194. R827085 (2000)
R827085 (2001)
R827085 (Final)
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  • Abstract: Oxford Journals-Abstract
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  • Journal Article Kirkpatrick GJ, Millie DF, Moline MA, Schofield O. Optical discrimination of a phytoplankton species in natural mixed populations. Limnology and Oceanography 2000;45(2):467-471. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
    R825243 (Final)
  • Full-text: ASLO-PDF
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  • Abstract: ASLO - Abstract
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  • Journal Article Liu G, Janowitz GS, Kamykowski D. Influence of environmental nutrient conditions on Gymnodinium breve (Dinophyceae) population dynamics: a numerical study. Marine Ecology Progress Series 2001;213:13-37. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Liu G, Janowitz GS, Kamykowski D. A biophysical model of population dynamics of the autotrophic dinoflagellate Gymnodinium breve. Marine Ecology Progress Series 2001;210:101-124. R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
  • Full-text: Marine Ecology Progress Series - PDF
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  • Journal Article Liu G, Janowitz GS, Kamykowski D. Influence of current shear on Gymnodinium breve (Dinophyceae) population dynamics: a numerical study. Marine Ecology Progress Series 2002;231:47-66. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
    R829370 (2002)
    R829370 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Pierce RH, Kirkpatrick GJ. Innovative techniques for harmful algal toxin analysis. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 2001;20(1):107-114. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Schofield O, Gryzmski J, Bissett WP, Kirkpatrick GJ, Millie DF, Moline M, Roesler CS. Optical monitoring and forecasting systems for harmful algal blooms: possibility or pipe dream? Journal of Phycology 1999;35(6):1477-1496. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
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    R825243 (1999)
    R825243 (Final)
  • Full-text: Cal Poly - PDF
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  • Abstract: Wiley Online
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  • Journal Article Millie DF, Dionigi CP, Schofield O, Kirkpatrick GJ, Tester PA. The importance of understanding the molecular, cellular, and ecophysiological bases of harmful algal blooms. Journal of Phycology 1999;35(6S):1353-1355. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Tester PA, Turner JT, Shea D. Vectorial transport of toxins from the dinoflagellate Gymnodinium breve through copepods to fish. Journal of Plankton Research 2000;22(1):47-62. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Van Dolah FM, Leighfield TA. Diel phasing of the cell-cycle in the Florida red tide dinoflagellate, Gymnodinium breve. Journal of Phycology 1999;35(6):1404-1411. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
    R827085 (Final)
  • Abstract: Wiley Online - Abstract
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  • Journal Article Walsh JJ, Penta B, Dieterle DA, Bissett WP. Predictive ecological modeling of harmful algal blooms. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment: An International Journal 2001;7(5):1369-1383. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
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  • Journal Article Walsh JJ, Haddad KD, Dieterle DA, Weisberg RH, Li ZJ, Yang HJ, Muller-Karger FE, Heil CA, Bissett WP. A numerical analysis of landfall of the 1979 red tide of Karenia brevis along the west coast of Florida. Continental Shelf Research 2002;22(1):15-38. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
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  • Journal Article Weisberg RH, Black BD, Li L. An upwelling case study on Florida's west coast. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 2000;105(C5):11459-11469. R827085 (2000)
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  • Journal Article Weisberg RH, Li Z, Muller-Karger F. West Florida shelf response to local wind forcing: April 1998. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 2001;106(C12):31239-31262. R827085 (2000)
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  • Journal Article Yang H, Weisberg RH. Response of the West Florida shelf circulation to climatological wind stress forcing. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 1999;104(C3):5301-5320. R827085 (2000)
    R827085 (2001)
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  • Abstract: Wiley Online - Abstract
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  • Supplemental Keywords:

    RFA, Scientific Discipline, Geographic Area, Waste, Water, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, Bioavailability, Ecology, Contaminated Sediments, Ecosystem/Assessment/Indicators, Ecosystem Protection, Health Risk Assessment, Oceanography, Ecological Effects - Environmental Exposure & Risk, algal blooms, Southeast, Ecology and Ecosystems, Biology, Ecological Indicators, ecological effects, ecological exposure, red tides, harmful algal blooms, ecological modeling, contaminated sediment, brevetoxins, dinoflagellate Gymnodinium breve, West Coast of Florida, Gymnodinium breve toxins, ECOHAB, dinoflagellate, ecological models, Florida

    Relevant Websites:

    http://www.floridamarine.org Exit

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
  • 1999
  • 2000 Progress Report
  • 2001 Progress Report
  • 2002 Progress Report