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Ciliate growth rates from Plymouth Sound: comparison of direct and indirect estimates

  • R.J.G. Leakey (a1) (a2), P.H. Burkill (a1) and M.A. Sleigh (a2)

Abstract

The in situ growth rates of marine planktonic ciliates from Plymouth Sound were determined after fractionating the natural community into several size categories to remove predators of different sizes. Total community in situ growth rates varied from 0·01 to 0·57 d−1 according to fractionation treatment, with the four most abundant taxa, comprising three species of Strombidium, and Mesodinium rubrum, achieving maximum in situ growth rates of between 0·41 and 0·68 d−1. These values are approximately half the maximum theoretical rates calculated indirectly using an equation which relates ciliate growth to cell size and temperature. Given the conservative nature of in situ growth rate measurements, the growth rates reported here appear appropriate for a natural ciliate community growing within a nutritionally favourable environment.

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Ciliate growth rates from Plymouth Sound: comparison of direct and indirect estimates

  • R.J.G. Leakey (a1) (a2), P.H. Burkill (a1) and M.A. Sleigh (a2)

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