Ecological modelling of the phytoplankton dynamics in the northern Gulf of Aqaba (Red Sea)

Laiolo, Leonardo (2012) Ecological modelling of the phytoplankton dynamics in the northern Gulf of Aqaba (Red Sea). [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Biologia marina [LM-DM270] - Ravenna
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The Gulf of Aqaba represents a small scale, easy to access, regional analogue of larger oceanic oligotrophic systems. In this Gulf, the seasonal cycles of stratification and mixing drives the seasonal phytoplankton dynamics. In summer and fall, when nutrient concentrations are very low, Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus are more abundant in the surface water. This two populations are exposed to phosphate limitation. During winter mixing, when nutrient concentrations are high, Chlorophyceae and Cryptophyceae are dominant but scarce or absent during summer. In this study it was tried to develop a simulation model based on historical data to predict the phytoplankton dynamics in the northern Gulf of Aqaba. The purpose is to understand what forces operate, and how, to determine the phytoplankton dynamics in this Gulf. To make the models data sampled in two different sampling station (Fish Farm Station and Station A) were used. The data of chemical, biological and physical factors, are available from 14th January 2007 to 28th December 2009. The Fish Farm Station point was near a Fish Farm that was operational until 17th June 2008, complete closure date of the Fish Farm, about halfway through the total sampling time. The Station A sampling point is about 13 Km away from the Fish Farm Station. To build the model, the MATLAB software was used (version R2008a), in particular a tool named Simulink. The Fish Farm Station models shows that the Fish Farm activity has altered the nutrient concentrations and as a consequence the normal phytoplankton dynamics. Despite the distance between the two sampling stations, there might be an influence from the Fish Farm activities also in the Station A ecosystem. The models about this sampling station shows that the Fish Farm impact appears to be much lower than the impact in the Fish Farm Station, because the phytoplankton dynamics appears to be driven mainly by the seasonal mixing cycle.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Laiolo, Leonardo
Relatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
modelling, phytoplankton
Data di discussione della Tesi
18 Luglio 2012

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