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Dynamics of cyanobacterial bloom formation Justin Chaffin Ph.D. F.T. Stone Laboratory Ohio Sea Grant The Ohio State University HABs.

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Presentation on theme: "Dynamics of cyanobacterial bloom formation Justin Chaffin Ph.D. F.T. Stone Laboratory Ohio Sea Grant The Ohio State University HABs."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dynamics of cyanobacterial bloom formation Justin Chaffin Ph.D. F.T. Stone Laboratory Ohio Sea Grant The Ohio State University HABs 101 Tom Ridge Environmental Center, August 14, 2013

2 What is a Harmful Algal Bloom? What is algae?

3 “Algae” Algae is not a taxonomic term – Eclectic term referring to any photosynthetic organisms that lacks multicellular gametangia – Eukaryotic or prokaryotic – Autotrophic, heterotrophic, mixotrophic – Marine, Freshwater, or terrestrial Some reserve the term “algae” for only eukaryotic organisms – Excludes cyanobacteria

4 There are hundreds of species of algae in Lake Erie

5 Lake Erie Shallow (30 ft)Deep (210 ft) MuddyClear High NutrientsLow Nutrients Warm Cool High Productivity Low Productivity

6 Lake Erie food web Bottom organisms

7 Major phytoplankton groups in Lake Erie Diatoms Glass cell wall High lipid content Nutritional for zooplankton Spring blooms of diatoms in Lake Erie

8 Lake Erie diatom bloom during winter Twiss et al., 2012 J Great Lakes Res.

9 Major phytoplankton groups in Lake Erie Green Algae Closely related to higher plants Account for 50% of species in Lake Erie Rarely bloom Less lipid, but nutritious

10 Cladophora Cladophora chloroplast Cladophora epiphytes Cladophora chloroplast

11 Major phytoplankton groups in Lake Erie Cyanobacteria “Blue-green algae” Some contain gas vacuoles Some produce toxins Some fix nitrogen Low lipid, low nutrition Just a few are “Harmful” – Synechococcus ~ 50% of oxygen

12 Other algae of Lake Erie

13 Lake Erie produces the most fish of all the Great Lakes because it has the most algae Highest nutrient concentrations Warmest water temperature

14 Too much of the wrong kind of algae is harmful “Bloom” is an excessive amount of algae “Harmful algae bloom” is a bloom of potentially harmful algae. Photo Credit: Drs Jeff Reutter and Doug Kane

15 What is a Harmful Algal Bloom? Harmful = – Has the potential to produce toxins. – Harmful impacts on ecosystems Algal = – Blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) – Red tide (dinoflagellates) Bloom = – Biomass that far exceed normal Hungeree.com geology.com

16 Are there non-harmful algal blooms? Cladophora Diatoms These algae can reach high biomasses but do not produce toxins harmful to humans or animals – But can have other negative impacts Turtles.org

17 Not an algal bloom: Duckweed Lily pads Submerged plants Lawn clippings

18 Algal blooms are a global problem Due to humans increasing nutrient loading Lake Taihu, China Lake Nieuwe Meer, Netherlands Lake Erie, USA

19 Problems associated algal blooms “Blooms” of cyanobacteria – Produce toxins – Low diversity of phytoplankton Taste and smell problems Low dissolved oxygen Property value decreases Negative economic impacts whoi.edu, W. Carmichael geolocation.ws

20 High phosphorus concentrations are required for eutrophication Schindler Science

21 Bloom requirements Water temperatures > 15 °C – July, August, September in Lake Erie High nutrient concentrations – Run off associated with rain storms – Phosphorus typically is the “limiting nutrient” – Nitrogen is important in cyanotoxin production

22 Lake Erie cyanobacteria blooms MODIS

23 Lake Erie 2011

24 Microcystis is the major blue-green algae in Lake Erie

25 Microcystis

26 Microcystis

27 Anabaena common late summer

28 Non-blooming Cyanobacteria in Lake Erie MerismopediaChroococcus

29 Lake Erie blooms have been typically confined to western Lake Erie: Microcystis landsat

30 Lake Erie 2011 A)June 1 B)July 19 C)July 31 D)August 11 E)September 3 F)October 9 Michalak et al PNAS

31 Variation in Microcystis bloom intensity of Lake Erie Bridgeman et al., Journal of Great Lakes Research

32 2011 Record-breaking bloom explained

33 Maumee River spring phosphorus load explains the size of the bloom Stumpf et al PloS One

34 Most P loading occurs during storms Michalak et al Proc Nat Acad Sci

35 Calm summer increased residence time of Maumee Bay Spring storm water sat in Maumee Bay during summer and provide the perfect incubator for cyanobacteria. Michalak et al Proc Nat Acad Sci

36 Calm water favors Microcystis Microcystis wins in calm water and deeper water Diatoms win in mixed water Huisman et al Mixed Calm TurbidClear

37 Photo credit: Roger Knight

38 2011 Record-breaking bloom explained Many large spring storms High P loading – Fertilized growth Very calm early summer – Microcystis floated and thrived – Diatoms sank and died

39 Other cyanobacteria blooms

40 Sandusky Bay

41 Planktothrix in Sandusky Bay

42 Sandusky Bay – July 2012

43 Central basin Anabaena bloom

44 Benthic Lyngbya in Maumee Bay

45 Lyngbya

46 Lyngbya at Stone Lab. August

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