Phytoplankton Ecology: Structure, Function and Fluctuation by Graham P. Harris

By Graham P. Harris

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These are models of small number systems, with few species. The derivation of the equations is given in many text books of population biology (MacArthur, 1972; Krebs, 1978; Pianka, 1978; Hutchinson, 1978; Begon and Mortimer, 1981) and, while the equations appear deceptively simple, they have some complex mathematical properties. A simple, graphical treatment of competition theory is sufficient to show that coexistence is most unlikely in a simple universe if the two species compete for a single resource (MacArthur, 1972; Colinvaux, 1973).

Environmental patchiness is also indicative of a possible absence of plenitude. The organisms must migrate to all the suitable environments before saturation can occur. Thus saturation is only likely in rather invariant environments where the species have a sufficiently long time for extensive migration to occur (Williamson, 1981a). The equilibrium theory of ecology assumes that either there is no environmental patchiness or that all possible patches are saturated with all possible species. Non-equilibrium theory assumes that patches open and close faster than the species can migrate from one to the other.

5 where Qw is water density. W,,· can be thought of as a surface current velocity. Thus we may convert the measured wind velocity into a velocity scale for the generation of TKE in surface waters. , 1978). The well mixed surface layer of water may also be treated as a logarithmic boundary layer just like the air Gones and Kenney, 1977). Under these circumstances the important velocity scale is W* and the important length scale is the depth z. , 1981; Oakey and Elliott, 1982). Thus the rate of dissipation of TKE scales as the cube of W*.

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