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  1. This dataset consists of primary production measurements based on uptake of carbon-13 added as 13C-bicarbonate during 24-h deckboard incubations of seawater. Sampling occurred on cruises along the Northeast U.S. Shelf Long Term Ecological Research (NES-LTER) Transect during summer, fall, and winter, starting in summer 2019. Net primary production (NPP) was determined from particulate organic carbon (POC) content and associated stable isotope enrichment. Three data tables are included: 1. Depth-specific primary productivity based on fractional light levels of the surface irradiance with reference to the profile of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR). 2. Integrated primary productivity. 3. Natural abundance POC. The tables derive from the raw data included as other entities. 
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  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 1, 2023
  3. Abstract

    Eukaryotic microalgae play critical roles in the structure and function of marine food webs. The contribution of microalgae to food webs can be tracked using compound‐specific isotope analysis of amino acids (CSIA‐AA). Previous CSIA‐AA studies have defined eukaryotic microalgae as a single functional group in food web mixing models, despite their vast taxonomic and ecological diversity. Using controlled cultures, this work characterizes the amino acidδ13C (δ13CAA) fingerprints—a multivariate metric of amino acid carbon isotope values—of four major groups of eukaryotic microalgae: diatoms, dinoflagellates, raphidophytes, and prasinophytes. We found excellent separation of essential amino acidδ13C (δ13CEAA) fingerprints among four microalgal groups (mean posterior probability reclassification of 99.2 ± 2.9%). We also quantified temperature effects, a primary driver of microalgal bulk carbon isotope variability, on the fidelity ofδ13CAAfingerprints. A 10°C range in temperature conditions did not have significant impacts on variance inδ13CAAvalues or the diagnostic microalgalδ13CEAAfingerprints. Theseδ13CEAAfingerprints were used to identify primary producers at the base of food webs supporting consumers in two contrasting systems: (1) penguins feeding in a diatom‐based food web and (2) mixotrophic corals receiving amino acids directly from autotrophic endosymbiotic dinoflagellates and indirectly from water column diatoms, prasinophytes, and cyanobacteria, likely via heterotrophic feeding on zooplankton. The increased taxonomic specificity of CSIA‐AA fingerprints developed here will greatly improve future efforts to reconstruct the contribution of diverse eukaryotic microalgae to the sources and cycling of organic matter in food web dynamics and biogeochemical cycling studies.

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  4. In 2016-17, shellfish harvesting closed for the first time in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, USA, from domoic acid (DA), a neurotoxin produced by diatoms of the Pseudo-nitzschia genus. Pseudo-nitzschia have occurred frequently for over 60 years in Narragansett Bay’s Long-Term Plankton Time Series (NBPTS), therefore it is surprising that the first closure only recently occurred. Pseudo-nitzschia species are known to vary in their toxin production, thus species identification is critical for understanding the underlying ecological causes of these harmful algal blooms (HABs). DNA in plankton biomass can be preserved for many years, so molecular barcoding of archived samples is useful for delineation of taxa over time. This study used amplification of the Pseudo-nitzschia -specific 18S-5.8S rDNA internal transcribed spacer region 1 (ITS1) in plankton samples and high throughput sequencing to characterize Pseudo-nitzschia species composition over a decade in Narragansett Bay, including eight years before the 2016-17 closures and two years following. This metabarcoding method can discriminate nearly all known Pseudo-nitzschia species. Several species recur as year-round residents in Narragansett Bay ( P. pungens var. pungens, P. americana, P. multiseries , and P. calliantha ). Various other species increased in frequency after 2015, and some appeared for the first time during the closure period. Notably, P. australis , a species prevalent in US West Coast HABs and known for high DA production, was not observed in Narragansett Bay until the 2017 closure but has been present in several years after the closures. Annual differences in Pseudo-nitzschia composition were correlated with physical and chemical conditions, predominantly water temperature. The long-term composition trends of Pseudo-nitzschia in Narragansett Bay serve as a baseline for identifying the introduction of new species, understanding shifting assemblages that contributed to the 2016-17 closures, and monitoring species that may be cause for future concern. 
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  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 1, 2023
  6. Phytoplankton support complex bacterial microbiomes that rely on phytoplankton-derived extracellular compounds and perform functions necessary for algal growth. Recent work has revealed sophisticated interactions and exchanges of molecules between specific phytoplankton–bacteria pairs, but the role of host genotype in regulating those interactions is unknown. Here, we show how phytoplankton microbiomes are shaped by intraspecific genetic variation in the host using global environmental isolates of the model phytoplankton host Thalassiosira rotula and a laboratory common garden experiment. A set of 81 environmental T. rotula genotypes from three ocean basins and eight genetically distinct populations did not reveal a core microbiome. While no single bacterial phylotype was shared across all genotypes, we found strong genotypic influence of T. rotula , with microbiomes associating more strongly with host genetic population than with environmental factors. The microbiome association with host genetic population persisted across different ocean basins, suggesting that microbiomes may be associated with host populations for decades. To isolate the impact of host genotype on microbiomes, a common garden experiment using eight genotypes from three distinct host populations again found that host genotype influenced microbial community composition, suggesting that a process we describe as genotypic filtering, analogous to environmental filtering, shapes phytoplankton microbiomes. In both the environmental and laboratory studies, microbiome variation between genotypes suggests that other factors influenced microbiome composition but did not swamp the dominant signal of host genetic background. The long-term association of microbiomes with specific host genotypes reveals a possible mechanism explaining the evolution and maintenance of complex phytoplankton–bacteria chemical exchanges. 
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  7. null (Ed.)
    Extreme environmental fluctuations such as marine heatwaves (MHWs) can have devastating effects on ecosystem health and functioning through rapid population declines and destabilization of trophic interactions. However, recent studies have highlighted that population tolerance to MHWs is variable, with some populations even benefitting from MHWs. A number of factors can explain variation in responses between populations including their genetic variation, previous thermal experience and the cumulative heatwave intensity (°C d) of the heatwave itself. We disentangle the contributions of these factors on population mortality and post-heatwave growth rates by experimentally simulating heatwaves (7.5 or 9.2°C, for up to 9 days) for three genotypes of the Southern Ocean diatom Actinocyclus actinochilus . The effects of simulated heatwaves on mortality and population growth rates varied with genotype, thermal experience and the cumulative intensity of the heatwave itself. Firstly, hotter and longer heatwaves increased mortality and decreased post-heatwave growth rates relative to milder, shorter heatwaves. Secondly, growth above the thermal optimum before heatwaves exacerbated heatwave-associated negative effects, leading to increased mortality during heatwaves and slower growth after heatwaves. Thirdly, hotter and longer heatwaves resulted in more pronounced changes to thermal optima (T opt ) immediately following heatwaves. Finally, there is substantial intraspecific variation in post-heatwave growth rates. Our findings shed light on the potential of Southern Ocean diatoms to tolerate MHWs, which will increase both in frequency and in intensity under future climate change. 
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  8. Abstract

    Marine microbial communities in coastal environments are subject to both seasonal fluctuations and anthropogenic alterations of environmental conditions. The separate influences of temperature and resource‐dependency on phytoplankton growth, community, and ecosystem metabolism are relatively well understood. However, winners and losers in the ocean are determined based on the interplay among often rapidly changing biological, chemical and physical drivers. The direct, indirect, and interactive effects of these conditions on planktonic food web structure and function are poorly constrained. Here, we investigated how simultaneous manipulation of temperature and nutrient availability affects trophic transfer from phytoplankton to herbivorous protists, and their resulting implications at the ecosystem level. Temperature directly affected herbivorous protist composition; ciliates dominated (66%) in colder treatment and dinoflagellates (60%) at warmer temperatures. Throughout the experiments, grazing rates were < 0.1 d−1, with higher rates at subzero temperatures. Overall, the nutrient–temperature interplay affected trophic transfer rates antagonistically when nutrients were amended, and synergistically, when nutrients were not added. This interaction resulted in higher percentages of primary production consumed under nutrient unamended compared to nutrient amended conditions. At the ecosystem level, these changes may determine the fate of primary production, with most of the production likely exported out of the pelagic zone in high‐temperature and nutrient conditions, while high‐temperature and low‐nutrient availability strengthened food web coupling and enhanced trophic transfer. These results imply that in warming oceans, management of coastal nutrient loading will be a critical determinant of the degree of primary production removal by microzooplankton and dependent ecosystem production.

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  9. Diatoms generate nearly half of marine primary production and are comprised of a diverse array of species that are often morphologically cryptic or difficult to identify using light microscopy. Here, species composition and realized thermal niches of species in the diatom genus Thalassiosira were examined at the site of the Narragansett Bay (NBay) Long-Term Plankton Time Series using a combination of light microscopy (LM), high-throughput sequencing (HTS) of the 18S rDNA V4 region and historical records. Thalassiosira species were identified over 6 years using a combination of LM and DNA sequences. Sixteen Thalassiosira taxa were identified using HTS: nine were newly identified in NBay. Several newly identified species have small cell diameters and are difficult to identify using LM. However, they appeared frequently and thus may play a significant ecological role in NBay, particularly since their realized niches suggest they are eurythermal and able to tolerate the >25 °C temperature range of NBay. Four distinct species assemblages that grouped by season were best explained by surface water temperature. When compared to historical records, we found that the cold-water species Thalassiosira nordenskioeldii has decreased in persistence over time, suggesting that increasing surface water temperature has influenced the ecology of phytoplankton in NBay. 
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