8th International Nannoplankton Association Conference
Ernesto Bravo-Sierra, David U. Hernández-Becerril:
Studies on coccolithophorids of the Mexican Pacific are virtually lacking, the main reason being the traditional methods used to study marine phytoplankton. During several cruises (1997-1999), bottle-samples (4l) were taken to collect living coccolithophorids from different zones of the Mexican Pacific (Baja California, Gulf of California and Sinaloa). Environmental variables were also measured: temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen. The samples were analysed by light and scanning electron microscopy, yielding 38 coccolithophorid taxa, including 31 species and seven varieties (four nominal varieties). The coccolithophorid flora is typically tropical-subtropical and is characterised by species of the genera Emiliania, Gephyrocapsa, Helicosphaera, Rabdosphaera and Umbilicosphaera. Only three species of holococcolithophorids were encountered and the rest of the taxa are heterococcolithophorids. The contribution of coccolithophorids to marine phytoplankton is very important in the Mexican Pacific, but still remains underestimated. This is the first floristic study of coccolithophorids in the Mexican Pacific.
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