The Role of Ice Melting in Providing Available Iron to the Surface Water of the Eastern Bering Sea Shelf
Basic Project Information
Funds are provided to test the hypothesis that melting ice is a significant source of iron for biological growth in the stratified Bering Sea shelf water during spring. The PI will investigate whether iron in the water immediately beneath the sea ice cover is depleted before macronutrients are depleted during the initial algal growth in spring prior to sea ice melt. He, also, will determine whether subsequent melting of sea ice is an important source of available iron that leads to a persistent excess of iron in the ice-free shelf surface water. If available iron is a limiting micronutrient in this environment, the proposed experiments will provide an alternative to the standard explanation of the effects of sea ice melting on the spring phytoplankton bloom.