Ecological growth strategies in the seaweeds Gracilaria foliifera (Rhodophyceae) and Ulva sp. (Chlorophyceae): Soluble nitrogen and reserve carbohydrates

Journal Article

The seaweeds Gracilaria foliifera (Rhodophyceae) and Ulva sp. (Chlorophyceae) were grown in an outdoor continuous-flow system at both ambient incident light (I0) and 0.13 I0. During the winter, both species accumulated substantial soluble nitrogen reserves (up to 1020 μg-at N·g dry wt-1 in G. foliifera and 630 μg-at N·g dry wt-1 in Ulva sp.). The rate at which these N reserves were depleted was proportional to the growth rate. Seaweeds grown at 0.13 I0 had lower growth rates and higher levels of soluble tissue N than plants grown at I0. During the spring-summer growing season, peaks in tissue N followed nutrient peaks in the ambient seawater. Ulva sp. had higher nutrient uptake and growth rates than G. foliifera and showed greater fluctuations in soluble tissue N. This may characterize opportunistic seaweed species with high biomass turnover rates. At I0, the levels of starch (up to 340 mg·g dry wt-1 in G. foliifera and 170 mg·g dry wt-1 in Ulva sp.) were highest during the spring and summer. During this period, fluctuations in starch content were inversely related to growth rate and soluble tissue N. Seaweeds grown at 0.13 I0 did not accumulate starch. Neither species was found to overwinter with starch reserves. © 1982 Springer-Verlag.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Rosenberg, C; Ramus, J

Published Date

  • 1982

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 66 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 251 - 259

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0025-3162

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/BF00397030