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Seeberg-Elverfeldt, Ismene A; Lange, Carina Beatriz; Pätzold, Jürgen (2004): Siliceous microplankton in surface sediments and the water column of the Red Sea. PANGAEA,, Supplement to: Seeberg-Elverfeldt, IA et al. (2004): Preservation of siliceous microplankton in surface sediments of the Northern Red Sea. Marine Micropaleontology, 51(3-4), 193-211,

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We studied the siliceous microplankton assemblages (mainly diatoms) from plankton tows (mesh size 20 µm) and surface sediment samples collected along a N-S transect in the northern Red Sea (28-21°N). In addition, we analyzed differences/similarities between plankton and sediment assemblages within a brine-filled basin (the southern basin) of the Shaban Deep and compared these assemblages with those from outside the brine. Plankton samples revealed the overwhelming dominance of diatoms over other siliceous groups. Diatoms accounted for ca. 97% of all biosiliceous particles at 120-20 m (vs. 2.9% silicoflagellates and 0.4% radiolarians), and ca. 94% at 200-120 m (vs. 4.5% silicoflagellates and 1.6% radiolarians). In general, a marine, warm-water (tropical/subtropical) diatom assemblage characterizes the plankton samples. Representatives of the Nitzschia bicapitata group are by far the most abundant contributors at both depth intervals (average=43%), ranging from ca. 30% in the North to ca. 60% in the South. Biogenic opal content in non-brine surface sediments is very low, (below 0.2 wt.% SiO2); and concentration of siliceous microorganisms is also low and of the order of 5*10**3-10**4 microorganisms/g dry sediment. Diatoms are the main contributors to the opal signal in the 20-40 µm fraction, while they share dominance with radiolarians in the >40 µm fraction. Total diatom concentrations average 1.2*10**4 valves/g in the 20-40 µm fraction and 4*10**3 valves/g in the >40 µm fraction. Robust taxa of warm water affinity (Alveus marinus, Azpeitia neocrenulata, Azpeitia nodulifera and Roperia tesselata) characterize the surface sediments. In contrast, biogenic opal content in brine surface sediment samples is much higher than in the non-brine samples, ranging from 2.8 to 3.8 wt.% SiO2, and concentration of siliceous microorganisms is 3-4 orders of magnitude higher. In addition here, diatoms dominate the opal signal. The taxa found in these samples are a mixture of non-brine and plankton samples, and fragile forms (e.g., N. bicapitata group, Neodelphineis indica) are well preserved in these sediments. Thus, brine sediments in this region seem to offer a great potential for palaeoenvironmental studies.
Related to:
Seeberg-Elverfeldt, Ismene A (2004): Laminated diatomaceous sediments of the Red Sea, their composition and significance as recorders of abrupt changes in productivity and circulation during the Late Quaternary. PhD Thesis, Elektronische Dissertationen an der Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Bremen, Germany, urn:nbn:de:gbv:46-diss000009977
Median Latitude: 24.890742 * Median Longitude: 36.445191 * South-bound Latitude: 21.405000 * West-bound Longitude: 34.736000 * North-bound Latitude: 27.878500 * East-bound Longitude: 38.843333
Date/Time Start: 1999-03-26T16:19:00 * Date/Time End: 2002-03-20T15:07:00
GeoB5823-1 * Latitude: 26.421000 * Longitude: 35.669800 * Date/Time: 1999-03-26T16:19:00 * Elevation: -789.0 m * Recovery: 0.33 m * Location: Northern Red Sea * Campaign: M44/3 * Basis: Meteor (1986) * Method/Device: MultiCorer (MUC) * Comment: 6 big, 4 small tubes filled
GeoB5825-1 * Latitude: 26.507800 * Longitude: 35.949000 * Date/Time: 1999-03-27T01:19:00 * Elevation: -1031.0 m * Recovery: 0.31 m * Location: Northern Red Sea * Campaign: M44/3 * Basis: Meteor (1986) * Method/Device: MultiCorer (MUC) * Comment: 5 big, 4 small tubes filled
GeoB5827-1 * Latitude: 26.318500 * Longitude: 35.520000 * Date/Time: 1999-03-27T17:10:00 * Elevation: -959.0 m * Recovery: 0.09 m * Location: Northern Red Sea * Campaign: M44/3 * Basis: Meteor (1986) * Method/Device: MultiCorer (MUC) * Comment: 4 small tubes filled
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