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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-181
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-181
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: data description paper 07 Nov 2019

Submitted as: data description paper | 07 Nov 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Earth System Science Data (ESSD).

Observations of late-winter marine productivity in an ice-covered fjord, West Greenland

David Chandler1 and Shona Mackie2,3 David Chandler and Shona Mackie
  • 1School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  • 2School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  • 3Department of Physics, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Abstract. Direct observations of marine microbial metabolism are sparse in the Arctic, particularly under sea ice during winter. This paper presents the first observations of Arctic winter microbial activity under sea ice in a west Greenland fjord (Lillefjord, ∼70° N). Here, measured changes in dissolved oxygen (DO) content in light and dark in-situ incubations were used to calculate net community productivity, respiration and photosynthesis rates. Data were collected at two fully ice-covered sites during February 2013, shortly after the end of the polar night. Averaged over the full study period, dark incubations showed statistically significant decreases in DO of −0.36 ± 0.24 (near shore) and -0.09 ± 0.07 gO2m−3d−1 (fjord centre), which are 2–20 times greater than rates previously reported under sea ice in the Arctic. The data provide no significant evidence for photosynthesis or any temporal change in metabolism rates over the study period; however, ambient sea water DO increased significantly at the fjord centre (0.023 ± 0.013 gO2m−3d−1), possibly attributable to sea ice algal photosynthesis. These incubation data may improve our understanding of microbial activity in the fjord during winter, and their contribution to Arctic ecosystems under present and future conditions. The data are available online at https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.906332.

David Chandler and Shona Mackie
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David Chandler and Shona Mackie
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Observations of winter marine productivity in an ice-covered fjord, West Greenland D. Chandler and S. Mackie https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.906332

David Chandler and Shona Mackie
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Short summary
The activity of micro-organisms at the bottom of the marine food chain has rarely been measured under sea ice in winter. We present the first observations of Arctic winter microbial activity under sea ice in a west Greenland fjord. By measuring changes in the oxygen concentration of sea water under the ice, we found low but significant levels of activity, suggesting these microbial communities may constitute an important part of the winter marine ecosystem.
The activity of micro-organisms at the bottom of the marine food chain has rarely been measured...
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