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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database
Living radiolarians, planktonic foraminifers, and pteropods have been collected during 1972-74 from the waters of the Gulf of Mexico and adjacent seas using Nansen closing nets, DUCA high-speed plankton nets, water bottles, and plankton pumps by micropaleontologists at Rice University. These samples included other shelled microplankton (diatoms, dinoflagellates, silicoflagellates, mollusk larvae, etc), nonshelled microplankton (blue-green algae, dinoflagellates, etc), and larger plankton (e.g., copepods, chaetognaths). Radiolarian, planktonic foraminifer, and pteropod species compositions, diversities, and densities were compared with those of other plankton, and were related to physical and chemical oceanographic parameters. Our studies suggest that certain radiolarian, lanktonic foraminifer, and pteropod species may be nannoherbivores, bacteriovores, detritivores, and/or associated with symbiotic algae and may be characteristic of eutrophic, mesotrophic, or oligotrophic conditions.
This information can be applied to studies of the fossil record for finer resolution of paleoecologic conditions (e.g., paleoproductivities) and for inference of the presence and nature (abundance and diversities) of certain nonfossilizable planktonic components.
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