Dissolved iron in the vicinity of the Crozet Islands, Southern Ocean
Statham, Peter J.
Fones, Gary R.
Charette, Matthew A.
Moore, C. Mark
Nedelec, Florence H.
Taylor, Sarah L.
Baker, Alexander R.
Mahowald, Natalie M.
Jickells, T. D.
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The annual phytoplankton bloom occurring north of the Crozet Plateau provides a rare opportunity to examine the hypothesis that natural iron fertilisation can alleviate HNLC conditions normally associated with the Southern Ocean. Therefore, during CROZEX, a large multidisciplinary study performed between November 2004 and January 2005, measurements of total dissolved iron (DFe, ≤ 0.2 μm) were made on seawater from around the islands and atmospheric iron deposition estimated from rain and aerosol samples. DFe concentrations were determined by flow injection analysis with N,N-dimethyl- pphenylenediamine dihydrochloride (DPD) catalytic spectrophotometric detection. DFe concentrations varied between 0.086 nM and 2.48 nM, with low values in surface waters. Enrichment of dissolved iron (>1 nM) at close proximity to the islands suggests that the plateau and the associated sediments are a source of iron. Waters further north also appear to be affected by this input of coastal and shelf origin, although dissolved iron concentrations decrease as a function of distance to the north of the plateau with a gradient of ~0.07 nM.km-1 at the time of sampling. Using lateral and vertical diffusion coefficients derived from Ra isotope profiles and also estimates of atmospheric inputs, it was then possible to estimate a DFe concentration of ~0.55 nM to the north of the islands prior to the bloom event, which is sufficient to initiate the bloom, the lateral island source being the largest component. A similar situation is observed for other Sub-Antarctic Islands such as Kerguelen, South Georgia, that supply dissolved iron to their surrounding waters, thus, enhancing chlorophyll concentrations.
Author Posting. © Elsevier B.V., 2007. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Elsevier B.V. for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography 54 (2007): 1999-2019, doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2007.06.019.
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