Relationships between Light Availability, Chlorophyll A, and Tripton in a Large, Shallow Subtropical Lake

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The relationships between planktonic chlorophyll a and mean light availability in the mixed layer were examined for Lake Okeechobee, a shallow eutrophic lake in south‐central Florida. There were significant spatial differences in the nature of this relationship. In the northern and central regions of the lake, concentrations of nonalgal suspended solids, tripton, were high due to muddy sediments and polymictic conditions. Light attenuation was predominantly correlated to the concentration of tripton and chlorophyll a concentrations were positively correlated to mean light availability in the mixed layer, Im. The western and southern regions of the lake had lower concentrations of tripton and light attenuation was correlated to chlorophyll a concentrations in summer and fall. Variables which estimate mean light availability in the mixed layer, such as Im, may provide insight into the role of light availability in the control of phytoplankton standing crop.

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Limnology and Oceanography, v. 40, issue 2, p. 416-421