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Modelling allelopathy among marine algae

AuthorsSolé, Jordi ; García-Ladona, Emilio ; Ruardij, Piet; Estrada, Marta
Advisor12 pages, 4 figures, 2 tables
KeywordsMarine algae
Mixed cultures
Issue DateMay-2005
CitationEcological Modelling 183(4): 373-384 (2005)
AbstractAllelopathy among microalgae has been modelled in order to fit the dynamics of mixed cultures of Chrysocromulina polylepis and Heterocapsa triquetra, carried out with three different initial concentrations of the allelopathic species C. polylepis. The experimental data have been analysed with a simple Lotka-Volterra type model including an allelopathic term. Based on the population dynamics of the two species in unialgal and mixed cultures, the model has been simplified and solved analytically. The best fit of the allelopathy parameter (γ≈10-5 to 10-6) provides a good agreement between the theoretical curve and the experimental data for the two highest initial concentrations of C. polylepis but, interestingly, shows a less accurate fit for low initial concentrations of the toxic alga. Following the same procedures, a modified model, in which the allelopathic effect is dependent on the square of the concentration of the toxic alga, has been adjusted to the experimental data. This modified model presents a good fit for all the range of initial concentrations of the toxic alga. These results allow a quantification of the strength of the allelopathic interaction between two marine phytoplankton species. The growth curve of the non-toxic alga is significantly affected by the allelopathy term only after the toxic alga has reached relatively high concentrations. This supports field observations suggesting that, at least in the case of C. polylepis, allelopathy may be important once a bloom is well developed, but is not likely to be a key factor in initial phases of the proliferation. © 2004 Published by Elsevier B.V.
Publisher version (URL)https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2004.08.021
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2004.08.021
issn: 0304-3800
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