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Old 02/24/2016, 02:55 PM   #3190
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Iceland
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I do have high amounts of small floating particles, but those are mix of various decaying matters that have clumped up and would sink to the deep in the ocean as marine snow, but we have skimmers acting as one. A good portion is highly reflective indicating it's calcium based. There is no doubt that there is calcareous matter on the lose, but I can't tell for sure if it's my sandbed breaking down into ever smaller pieces or something forming in my tank. Many had shapes though that could hardly be caused with erosion. Not rounded, but stick like etc.
Some reefers with ostis report Calcium levels at 450 while myself and a friend have constant low levels.

I introduced the Coccolithophores to the readers of this thread a couple of years ago, but nobody seemed to be interested.
They are a major player in the bloom business and it would be silly to think they are not present in all reef tanks.
How one estimates the amount in our small tanks is not easy and then try to figure out how much is normal.
Nobody ever talks about them in these forums and even though diatoms, another big player get's spotted in our microscope I don't recall anyone having dino and diatom blooms at the same time.

Role in the food web
Coccolithophores are one of the more abundant primary producers in the ocean. As such, they are a large contributor to the primary productivity of the tropical and subtropical oceans, however, exactly how much has yet to have been recorded.

Dependence on nutrients
The ratio between the concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorus and silicate in particular areas of the ocean dictates competitive dominance within phytoplankton communities. Each ratio essentially tips the odds in favor of either diatoms or more other groups of phytoplankton, such as coccolithophores. A low silicate to nitrogen and phosphorus ratio allows coccolithophores to outcompete other phytoplankton species; however, when silicate to phosphorus to nitrogen ratios are high coccolithophores are outcompeted by diatoms. The increase in agricultural processes lead to eutrophication of waters and thus, coccolithophore blooms in these high nitrogen and phosphorus, low silicate environments.

Predator-prey interactions
Their predators include the common predators of all phytoplankton including small fish, zooplankton, and shellfish larvae. Viruses specific to this species have been isolated from several locations worldwide and appear to play a major role in spring bloom dynamics.

Last edited by DNA; 02/24/2016 at 03:01 PM.
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