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Dinoflagellate Maximum Layer (Biotic Group)

Component: Biotic

Unique Identifier: 488

Biotic Setting Planktonic Biota
Biotic Class Phytoplankton
Biotic Subclass Dinoflagellate Phytoplankton
Biotic Group Dinoflagellate Maximum Layer
Biotic Community Gymnodinium Maximum Layer

Definition Relatively thin layer dominated by dinoflagellates at depth in the water column. Dinoflagellates migrate vertically through the water column to layers where nutrients and light are optimal for growth. Often the maxima can occur at the surface when nutrients are saturating throughout the water column. There is also evidence that migration is an adaptive strategy to avoid predation (Baek et al. 2011).