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© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 05 Nov 2019

Submitted as: research article | 05 Nov 2019

Review status
A revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

Population dynamics of modern planktonic foraminifera in the western Barents Sea

Julie Meilland1, Hélène Howa2, Vivien Hulot3,4, Isaline Demangel5,6, Joëlle Salaün7, and Thierry Garlan7 Julie Meilland et al.
  • 1MARUM – Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, Leobener Str. 8, 28359, Bremen, Germany
  • 2LPG-BIAF, UMR-CNRS 6112, University of Angers, France
  • 3University of French Polynesia, UMR-241 EIO, Labex Corail, FAA’A, Tahiti, French Polynesia
  • 4Ifremer, UMR-241 EIO, Labex Corail, Departement Ressources Biologiqueset Environnement, Vairao, Tahiti, French Polynesia
  • 5Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Graz, NAWI Graz Geocenter, Graz, Austria
  • 6Department of Geology, University of Lund, Lund, Sweden
  • 7SHOM – Sciences et Techniques Marines/Géologie Marine, Brest, France

Abstract. This study reports on species diversity and distribution of planktonic foraminifera (PF) at the Barents Sea Opening (BSO). PF populations living in late summer (collected by mean of stratified plankton tows) and recently settled individuals (sampled by interface corer) were studied and compared. High abundances reaching up to 400 ind.m−3 in tow samples and 8000−3 in surface sediments were recorded in the centre of the studied area while low abundances were observed in coastal areas, likely hampered by continental influences. The living and subfossil (i.e. core-top) assemblages are mainly composed of the four same species Neogloboquadrina pachyderma, Neogloboquadrina incompta, Turborotalita quinqueloba and Globigerinita uvula. The two species G. uvula and T. quinqueloba largely dominate the upper water column whereas surface sediment assemblages display especially high concentrations of N. pachyderma. The unusual dominance of G. uvula in the water sample assemblages compared to its low occurrence in surface sediments might be the signature of (1) a seasonal signal due to summer phytoplankton composition changes at the BSO, linked to the increase of summer temperature at the study site, and/or (2) a signal of a larger time-scale and wide geographical reach phenomenon inducing poleward temperate/subpolar species migration and consecutive foraminiferal assemblage diversification at high latitudes under global climate forcing. Protein concentrations were measured on single specimens and used as a proxy of individual carbon biomass. Specimens of all species show the same trend, i.e. a northward decrease of their size-normalized-protein concentration suggesting foraminiferal biomass to be potentially controlled by different constituents of their organelles (e.g. lipids). The originality of coupling data from plankton tows, protein measurements and surface sediments allows us to hypothesise that PF dynamics (seasonality and distribution) is decoupled from their metabolism.

Julie Meilland et al.

Interactive discussion

Status: final response (author comments only)
Status: final response (author comments only)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment

Julie Meilland et al.

Julie Meilland et al.


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Short summary
This study reports on planktonic foraminifera (PF) diversity and distribution in the Barents Sea. The species Globigerinita uvula and Turborotalita quinqueloba dominate the water column while surface sediments are dominated by Neogloboquadrina pachyderma. We hypothesise the unusual dominance of G. uvula in the water to be a seasonal signal or a result of climate forcing. Size-normalized-protein concentrations of PF show a northward decrease, suggesting biomass to vary with the environment.
This study reports on planktonic foraminifera (PF) diversity and distribution in the Barents...