Organic detritus of a Tropical estuary

Qasim, S. Z. ; Sankaranarayanan, V. N. (1972) Organic detritus of a Tropical estuary Marine Biology, 15 (3). pp. 193-199. ISSN 0025-3162

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Organic detritus of the Cochin Backwater (India) is largely composed of fine silt and sand particles around which organic matter adheres and forms aggregates. In addition to plankton, large quantities of benthic algae, rooted plants, animal matter, suspended soft mud and the material brought down by the rivers and land runoff constitute the main sources of detritus. Detritus sedimentation in the estuary attains its maximum from April to June. Detritus forms a major portion of seston, while phytoplankton productivity constitutes 0.1 to 1.0% of settled detritus. Detrital pigments include degraded chlorophyll (phaeophytin), which has a marked seasonal variation; detrital carbon, phosphorus and nitrogen show little change during the year. The caloric value of detritus, calculated from protein, carbohydrate and lipid fractions and also from total carbon, indicates that sedimented detritus does not have a high nutritional value. However, being a readily available material, its entry into the food chain seems to increase the efficiency of energy transfer from one trophic level to another.

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Deposited On:06 Apr 2011 13:53
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