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Spatio-temporal distributions of the newly described mixotrophic dinoflagellate Yihiella yeosuensis (Suessiaceae) in Korean coastal waters and its grazing impact on prey populations

  • Jang, Se Hyeon (School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Seoul National University) ;
  • Jeong, Hae Jin (School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Seoul National University)
  • Received : 2020.01.10
  • Accepted : 2020.02.24
  • Published : 2020.03.15

Abstract

To investigate the spatio-temporal distributions of the mixotrophic dinoflagellate Yihiella yeosuensis in Korean coastal waters and its grazing impact on prey populations, water samples were seasonally collected from 28 stations in the East, West, and South Seas of Korea and Jeju Island from April 2015 to October 2018. The abundances of Y. yeosuensis in the water samples were quantified using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Simultaneously, the physical and chemical properties of water from all sampled stations were determined, and the abundances of the optimal prey species of Y. yeosuensis, the prasinophyte Pyramimonas sp. and the cryptophyte Teleaulax amphioxeia, were quantified using qPCR. Y. yeosuensis has a wide distribution, as is reflected by the detection of Y. yeosuensis cells at 23 sampling stations; however, this distribution has a strong seasonality, which is indicated by its detection at 22 stations in summer but only one station in winter. The abundance of Y. yeosuensis was significantly and positively correlated with those of Pyramimonas sp. and T. amphioxeia, as well as with water temperature. The highest abundance of Y. yeosuensis was 48.5 cells mL-1 in Buan in July 2017, when the abundances of Pyramimonas sp. and T. amphioxeia were 917.6 and 210.4 cells mL-1, respectively. The growth rate of Y. yeosuensis on Pyramimonas sp., calculated by interpolating the growth rates at the same abundance, was 0.49 d-1, which is 37% of the maximum growth rate of Y. yeosuensis on Pyramimonas sp. obtained in the laboratory. Therefore, the field abundance of Pyramimonas sp. obtained in the present study can support a moderate positive growth of Y. yeosuensis. The maximum grazing coefficient for Y. yeosuensis on the co-occurring Pyramimonas sp. was 0.42 d-1, indicating that 35% of the Pyramimonas sp. population were consumed in 1 d. Therefore, the spatio-temporal distribution of Y. yeosuensis in Korean coastal waters may be affected by those of the optimal prey species and water temperature. Moreover, Y. yeosuensis may potentially have considerable grazing impacts on populations of Pyramimonas sp.

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