Sunday, May 25, 2014

Marine Science @ Otago - Tiffany Stephens

Does Bladder Kelp store nitrogen? If so, in which tissues?
The coastal environment has seasonal fluxes in seawater nitrogen concentrations, with the lowest concentrations coinciding with summer. Due to increased light during the summer, there is potential for high productivity but algae require nitrogen for growth and tissue maintenance.

Tiffany is investigating how Bladder Kelp grows during the summer and what happens to the nitrogen that Bladder Kelp uptake into their tissues.

Unlike other marine algae, Bladder Kelp has six main tissue types (stipe/stem, juvenile blade, adult blade, mature blade, reproductive blade, and holdfast/root) and it is important to understand how nitrogen moves through an individual plant, how it is stored and how/when it is used. Tiffany analyses the pigment concentration, soluble tissue nitrogen, total tissue nitrogen and amino acids to help answer her questions.

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