About the book
As Hensen defined them in 1887, planktons are all organisms in the water column which are passively ‘drifting’ along with water movements. Phytoplankton are types of plankton that live either as solitary individuals or multi-chain formed forms (or colonial forms) in the water column. The main types of phytoplankton in the marine systems are diatoms, dinoflagellates, coccolithophores and some other flagellates. The blue-green and green algae are very abundant in freshwater systems but are of lesser significance in the sea.
Phytoplankton have among them autotroph organisms which are fixing solar energy by photosynthesis, using carbon dioxide, nutrients such as N, P and various trace metals such as Fe, Zn, Co and Mg. These autotrophs contain photosynthetic pigments such as chlorophylls and carotenoids. Some phytoplankton organisms, mainly dinoflagellates can be temporarily heterotrophic which builds up organic particulate matter from dissolved organic substances (osmotrophy) or even particulate organic matter (phagotrophy).
The book will discuss the physical and chemical characteristics of the marine environment and some large freshwater systems in relation to phytoplankton growth, temporal and spatial variations in phytoplankton community, and the taxonomy, horizontal and vertical distribution. It will be a self-contained collection of scholarly chapters targeting an audience of researchers, academics and students as well as experts and professionals working in the field of marine ecosystems.