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Algae > Volume 26(1); 2011 > Article
Algae 2011;26(1): 41-50. doi: https://doi.org/10.4490/algae.2011.26.1.041
Spatial distribution of dinoflagellate resting cysts in Yellow Sea surface sediments
Choul-Hee Hwang1, Keun-Yong Kim2, Yoon Lee3 and Chang-Hoon Kim2,*

1Fish Research Team, Marine Eco-Technology Institute Co., Ltd., Busan 608-830, Korea
2Department of Marine Bio-materials and Aquaculture, Pukyong National University, Busan 608-737, Korea
3West Sea Fisheries Research Institute, National Fisheries Research & Development Institute, Incheon 400-420, Korea
*Corresponding Author  Email: chkpknu@hanmail.net
Yellow Sea surface sediment samples collected on October 15-31, 2003 were analyzed using the palynological process to investigate the spatial distribution of dinoflagellate resting cysts. The sampling areas comprised four latitudinal transects, the northernmost of which was located off the Shandong Peninsula, China and the southernmost off Jeju Island, Korea. Each transect line was composed of six to nine stations, panning the distance between the Chinese and Korean coasts. Twenty-five different types of dinoflagellate cysts were identified. Gonyaulax scrippsae, Alexandrium spp. (ellipsoidal type), and G. spinifera were the most dominant at all stations surveyed. Dinoflagellate cysts belonging to the Gonyaulacales comprised over 50% of all cysts collected. The latitudinal distribution trend showed that cyst concentrations along the two middle transects were much higher than those along the two northern and southern transects. Cyst concentrations in the offshore central areas reached their highest values within each transect and gradually decreased toward the Chinese and Korean coasts. Overall, cyst concentrations were markedly elevated in the offshore central Yellow Sea areas and gradually decreased outward in all four directions. This concentric cyst distribution pattern was consistent with the hydrographic features of the Yellow Sea, such as circular current systems, sedimentary properties, and water depth.
Key words: dinoflagellate; resting cyst; spatial distribution; Yellow Sea

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