A model study of warming-induced phosphorus–oxygen feedbacks in open-ocean oxygen minimum zones on millennial timescales
"Observations indicate an expansion of oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) over the past 50 years, likely related to ongoing deoxygenation caused by reduced oxygen solubility, changes in stratification and circulation, and a potential acceleration of organic matter turnover in a warming climate. The overall area of ocean sediments that are in direct contact with low-oxygen bottom waters also increases with expanding OMZs. This leads to a release of phosphorus from ocean sediments. If anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions continue unabated, higher temperatures will cause enhanced weathering on land, which, in turn, will increase the phosphorus and alkalinity fluxes into the ocean and therefore raise the ocean's phosphorus inventory even further. [...]"
Source: Earth System Dynamics
Authors: Daniela Niemeyer, Tronje P. Kemena, Katrin J. Meissner, and Andreas Oschlies
Biological nitrogen fixation in the oxygen-minimum region of the eastern tropical North Pacific ocean
"Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) was investigated above and within the oxygen-depleted waters of the oxygen-minimum zone of the Eastern Tropical North Pacific Ocean. BNF rates were estimated using an isotope tracer method that overcame the uncertainty of the conventional bubble method by directly measuring the tracer enrichment during the incubations. Highest rates of BNF (~4 nM day−1) occurred in coastal surface waters and lowest detectable rates (~0.2 nM day−1) were found in the anoxic region of offshore stations. [...]"
Source: The ISME Journal
Authors: Amal Jayakuma et al.
Cryptic oxygen cycling in anoxic marine zones
"Oxygen availability drives changes in microbial diversity and biogeochemical cycling between the aerobic surface layer and the anaerobic core in nitrite-rich anoxic marine zones (AMZs), which constitute huge oxygen-depleted regions in the tropical oceans. The current paradigm is that primary production and nitrification within the oxic surface layer fuel anaerobic processes in the anoxic core of AMZs, where 30–50% of global marine nitrogen loss takes place. Here we demonstrate that oxygenic photosynthesis in the secondary chlorophyll maximum (SCM) releases significant amounts of O2 to the otherwise anoxic environment. [...] "
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS)
Authors: Emilio Garcia-Robledo et al.
Decadal oxygen change in the eastern tropical North Atlantic
"Repeat shipboard and multi-year moored observations obtained in the oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) of the eastern tropical North Atlantic (ETNA) were used to study the decadal change in oxygen for the period 2006–2015. Along 23° W between 6 and 14° N, oxygen decreased with a rate of −5.9 ± 3.5 µmol kg−1 decade−1 within the depth covering the deep oxycline (200–400 m), while below the OMZ core (400–1000 m) oxygen increased by 4.0 ± 1.6 µmol kg−1 decade−1 on average. The inclusion of these decadal oxygen trends in the recently estimated oxygen budget for the ETNA OMZ suggests a weakened ventilation of the upper 400 m, whereas the ventilation strengthened homogeneously below 400 m. [...]"
Source: Ocean Science
Authors: Johannes Hahn, Peter Brandt, Sunke Schmidtko and Gerd Krahmann
Low oxygen eddies in the eastern tropical North Atlantic: Implications for N2O cycling
"Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a climate relevant trace gas, and its production in the ocean generally increases under suboxic conditions. The Atlantic Ocean is well ventilated, and unlike the major oxygen minimum zones (OMZ) of the Pacific and Indian Oceans, dissolved oxygen and N2O concentrations in the Atlantic OMZ are relatively high and low, respectively. [...]"
Source: Scientific Reports
Authors: D. S. Grundle et al.
Oxygen minimum zone: An important oceanographic habitat for deep-diving northern elephant seals
"Little is known about the foraging behavior of top predators in the deep mesopelagic ocean. Elephant seals dive to the deep biota-poor oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) (>800 m depth) despite high diving costs in terms of energy and time, but how they successfully forage in the OMZ remains largely unknown. Assessment of their feeding rate is the key to understanding their foraging behavior, but this has been challenging. Here, we assessed the feeding rate of 14 female northern elephant seals determined by jaw motion events (JME) and dive cycle time to examine how feeding rates varied with dive depth, particularly in the OMZ. [...]"
Source: Ecology and Evolution
Authors: Yasuhiko Naito et al.
Glacial-Interglacial changes and Holocene variations in Arabian Sea denitrification
"At present the Arabian Sea has a permanent oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) at water depths between about 100 m and 1200 m. Active denitrification in this OMZ is recorded by enhanced δ15N values in the sediments. Sediment cores show a δ15N increase from early to late Holocene which is contrary to the trend in other regions of water column denitrification. We calculated composite sea surface temperature (SST) and δ15N in time slices of 1000 years of the last 25 ka to better understand the reasons for the establishment of the Arabian Sea OMZ and its response to changes in the Asian monsoon system. [...]"
Source: Biogeosciences (under review)
Authors: Birgit Gaye et al.
Community composition of nitrous oxide consuming bacteria in the oxygen minimum zone of the Eastern Tropical South Pacific
"The ozone-depleting and greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide (N2O), is mainly consumed by the microbially mediated anaerobic process, denitrification. N2O consumption is the last step in canonical denitrification, and is also the least O2 tolerant step. Community composition of total and active N2O consuming bacteria was analyzed based on total (DNA) and transcriptionally active (RNA) nitrous oxide reductase (nosZ) genes using a functional gene microarray. The total and active nosZ communities were dominated by a limited number of nosZ archetypes, affiliated with bacteria from marine, soil and marsh environments. [...]"
Source: Frontiers in Microbiology
Authors: Xin Sun, Amal Jayakumar and Bess B. Ward
Seasonal monitoring of deep-sea megabenthos in Barkley Canyon cold seep by internet operated vehicle (IOV)
"Knowledge of the processes shaping deep-sea benthic communities at seasonal scales in cold-seep environments is incomplete. Cold seeps within highly dynamic regions, such as submarine canyons, where variable current regimes may occur, are particularly understudied. Novel Internet Operated Vehicles (IOVs), such as tracked crawlers, provide new techniques for investigating these ecosystems over prolonged periods. In this study a benthic crawler connected to the NEPTUNE cabled infrastructure operated by Ocean Networks Canada was used to monitor community changes across 60 m2 of a cold-seep area of the Barkley Canyon, North East Pacific, at ~890 m depth within an Oxygen Minimum Zone (OMZ). [...]"
Source: PLoS ONE
Authors: Carolina Doya et al.
Microbial eukaryote diversity in the marine oxygen minimum zone off northern Chile
"Molecular surveys are revealing diverse eukaryotic assemblages in oxygen-limited ocean waters. These communities may play pivotal ecological roles through autotrophy, feeding, and a wide range of symbiotic associations with prokaryotes. We used 18S rRNA gene sequencing to provide the first snapshot of pelagic microeukaryotic community structure in two cellular size fractions (0.2–1.6 μm, >1.6 μm) from seven depths through the anoxic oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) off northern Chile. Sequencing of >154,000 amplicons revealed contrasting patterns of phylogenetic diversity across size fractions and depths. Protist and total eukaryote diversity in the >1.6 μm fraction peaked at the chlorophyll maximum in the upper photic zone before declining by ~50% in the OMZ. [...]"
Source: Frontiers in Microbiology
Authors: Darren J. Parris et al.