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- Phytoplankton are microscopic plants that live in the
ocean.These small plants are very important to the ocean and to the
whole planet. They are at the base of the food chain. Many small fish and
whales eat them. Then bigger fish eat the little fish, etc. The food chain continues and at some point in time we (people)
come into it when we eat the fish. So the energy of plankton becomes
our energy too.
- The name plankton comes from the Greek word planktos meaning
wanderers. There are two types of plankton - phytoplankton, and
zooplankton. Phytoplankton are plant plankton. Zooplankton are animal
plankton. Phytoplankton include seaweed and algae. Phytoplankton are
mostly made up of diatoms and dinoflagellates. Diatoms are microscopic, single celled plants covered by two
shells that look glossy. Dinoflagellates are tiny plants with white shells all over them.
The shells have a whip like motion that allows the phytoplankton to
move. Those are the types of phytoplankton that are in our sea and
we must protect them a lot.
- Phytoplankton live near the surface of the ocean because they
need sunlight like all green plants. Also need water and nutrients
to live. Phytoplankton use water and CO2 to grow, but phytoplankton
still need other vitamins and minerals, like iron to survive.
- When the surface of the ocean is cold, the deeper parts of the
ocean bring these nutrients to the surface and the plankton live.
But, when the surface of the ocean is warm, as in El Niño, the ocean
does not bring as many of these essential nutrients and the
phytoplankton die. That causes a major problem because phytoplankton are at the
base of the food chain. So, when the population of phytoplankton is
reduced almost the entire food chain is effected. When phytoplankton die they drop to the bottom of the ocean.
- Scientists believe that the sun’s radiation in the Arctic and
Antarctic is killing off many species of plankton including
phytoplankton. They die because phytoplankton are extremely
sensitive to the sun’s radiation.
- Phytoplankton growth depends on the availability of carbon
dioxide, sunlight, and nutrients. Phytoplankton, like land plants,
require nutrients such as nitrate, phosphate, silicate, and calcium
at various levels depending on the species.
- Some phytoplankton can fix nitrogen and can grow in areas where
nitrate concentrations are low. They also require trace amounts of
iron which limits phytoplankton growth in large areas of the ocean
because iron concentrations are very low. Other factors influence phytoplankton growth rates, including
water temperature and salinity, water depth, wind, and what kinds of
predators are grazing on them.
- When conditions are right, phytoplankton populations can grow
explosively, a phenomenon known as a bloom. Blooms in the ocean may
cover hundreds of square kilometers and are easily visible in
satellite images. A bloom may last several weeks, but the life span
of any individual phytoplankton is rarely more than a few days.
- Phytoplankton are microscopic plants which obtain their energy
via photosynthesis. They are important to the aquatic ecosystem
because they are part of the primary producing community and assist
in recycling elements such as carbon and sulphur which are required
elsewhere in the community . They live suspended in the water environment, and form a very
important part of the freshwater community. They move via convection
or wind induced currents.
- Phytoplankton inhabits around ¾ of the Earth's surface, which
has had a fundamental warming effect. The phytoplankton in the
Earth's water supply absorbs a certain level of the sun's radiation
which has had a slight effect on global temperatures. Phytoplankton has caused global temperatures to rise between 0.1
and 0.6 degrees F, according to Science Daily.
- Scientists in the Arctic have discovered the largest ever
under-ice bloom of phytoplankton, likening the discovery to "finding
the Amazon rainforest in the middle of the Mojave Desert."
- Some benefits noticed by those using this Marine Phytoplankton
as a daily superfood supplement are enhanced brain function,
improved immune function, antiviral/antifungal/antibacterial
effects, improved cellular repair, radiation protection,
detoxification support, anti-inflammatory support, antioxidant
support, improved circulation, improved heart function,
allergy/asthma relief, suppression of symptoms stemming from
degenerative disease, and a residual grounding energy overall.
- When designing a microalgal production system,
consider which species is most appropriate for the intended use
(e.g., size and nutritional characteristics). Also consider yield, operating costs, and reliability.
culture is the most expensive and technically challenging aspect of
all hatchery operations. The cost of producing microalgal feed
ranges from $100 to $400 per dry kilogram ($45 to $180 per pound) of
(Wikfors, 2000). Algal culture accounts for about 40 percent of the cost of
rearing bivalve seed to a shell length of
5 mm in a land-based hatchery (Ukeles, 1980).
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