A seasonal study of the distributions of surface state variables in Liverpool Bay. III. An offshore front

P. Foster, D. Voltolina, C. P. Spencer, I. Miller, J. Beardall

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Abstract

Variously orientated transects through Liverpool Bay in December, 1976, revealed a narrow but steep density discontinuity running north to south through the surface waters. Surface distribution maps from cruises during the winter of 1976-1977 showed that the density discontinuity provided a sharp line of demarcation between the physical and chemical characteristics of the offshore and coastal waters. Over the winter, an accumulation of river discharged nutrients in the waters bounded by the front and the coast generated a large nutrient reservoir in the inshore waters and propagated a difference in the nutrient availability ratios across the front. As a consequence, by March the inshore waters were characterized by lower salinities and temperatures, higher dissolved inorganic nutrient concentrations and lower silicon to total nitrogen ratios than the offshore waters. Prior to the 1977 spring phytoplankton bloom in Liverpool Bay, these two contrasting water types were in juxtaposition along the length of the front.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-31
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology
Volume58
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 12 Feb 1982

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