Plankton blooms in vortices: The role of biological and hydrodynamic time scales

Sandulescu,M; López, C; Hernández-García, E; Feudel,U
Nonlinear Processes in Geophysics 14, 443-454 (2007)

We study the interplay of hydrodynamic mesoscale structures and
the growth of plankton in the wake of an island, and its
interaction with a coastal upwelling. Our focus is on a mechanism
for the emergence of localized plankton blooms in vortices. Using
a coupled system of a kinematic flow mimicking the mesoscale
structures behind the island and a simple three component model
for the marine ecosystem, we show that the long residence times of
nutrients and plankton in the vicinity of the island and the
confinement of plankton within vortices are key factors for the
appearance of localized plankton blooms

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