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Posts tagged Coccolithophores

Phytoplankton Blooms Gives Milky Blue Color to Barents Sea – August 9th, 2012

70.5N 44.5E

August 9th, 2012 Category: Image of the day, Phytoplankton

Russia – August 7th, 2012

An opaque, milky teal-colored phytoplankton bloom colors the waters of the Barents Sea (click here for previous images), north of Russia. The milky effect is probably due to the presence of coccolithophores, a type of phytoplankton which flourish in nutrient-poor, sub-polar waters and have unique limestone (calcite) scales. This white, chalky coating can cause whitish swirls in the water, making the blues washed out with a milky hue.

Swirls of Phytoplankton Bloom in Barents Sea

72.0N 22.7E

August 19th, 2011 Category: Phytoplankton

Phytoplankton in Barents Sea - August 16th, 2011

The vivid shades of blue and green creating swirled patterns in the Barents Sea are being created by a massive phytoplankton bloom near Norway. Such blooms are common in this area each August, since many species thrive in the nutrient-rich cooler ocean waters.

Here, the milky blue color is probably due to a plankton type known as coccolithophores, most likely of the species Emiliana huxleyi. The blooms of this species are usually caused by high light levels during the 24-hour Arctic summer sunshine.