Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/120213
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Type: Journal article
Title: Prokaryotic and diazotrophic population dynamics within a large oligotrophic inverse estuary
Author: Messer, L.
Doubell, M.
Jeffries, T.
Brown, M.
Seymour, J.
Citation: Aquatic Microbial Ecology, 2015; 74(1):1-15
Publisher: Iner-Research
Issue Date: 2015
ISSN: 0948-3055
1616-1564
Statement of
Responsibility: 
L.F. Messer, M. Doubell, T.C. Jeffries, M.V. Brown, J.R. Seymour
Abstract: The ecology of microbial assemblages inhabiting classical (positive) estuaries has been well documented. However, we know relatively little about the microbial ecology of inverse (negative) estuaries, which exhibit different physical and hydrodynamic properties, including oligotrophy and hypersalinity. We investigated the dynamics of bacterioplankton communities in Spencer Gulf, an inverse estuary in temperate South Australia. We characterised patterns in the overall diversity and composition of the resident microbial assemblage, and tested the hypothesis that pelagic nitrogen-fixing bacteria (diazotrophs) could be an important functional group in the nutrient limited waters of the region. Prokaryotic and diazotrophic communities were evaluated using 16S ribosomal DNA and nifH amplicon tag pyrosequencing, respectively. Significant heterogeneity in microbial community composition and diazotrophic population structure was observed, which was driven by shifts in the relative importance of temperate vs. subtropical and oceanic vs. coastal ecotypes of Cyanobacteria throughout the inverse estuary. The globally significant unicellular cyanobacterium, UCYN-A ‘Candidatus Atelocyanobacterium thalassa’, was the dominant diazotrophic phylotype. Temperature, chlorophyll a and nitrogen availability were all significant drivers of bacterioplankton dynamics within the gulf. These results demonstrate the heterogeneous microbiology of inverse estuaries, indicating that specific abiotic and biotic characteristics select for discrete microbial communities, and that pelagic nitrogen fixation may be important in this temperate oligotrophic system.
Keywords: Inverse estuary; marine bacteria; community composition; diazotroph
Rights: © Inter-Research 2015
RMID: 0030117322
DOI: 10.3354/ame01726
Grant ID: http://purl.org/au-research/grants/arc/DP120102764
Appears in Collections:Ecology, Evolution and Landscape Science publications

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