Assessment of a global climatology of oceanic dimethylsulfide (DMS) concentrations based on SeaWiFS imagery (1998-2001)

S Belviso*, C Moulin, L Bopp, J Stefels

*Corresponding author for this work

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A method is developed to estimate sea-surface particulate dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP(p)) and dimethylsulfide (DMS) concentrations from sea-surface concentrations of chlorophyll a (Chl a). When compared with previous studies, the 1degrees x 1degrees global climatology of oceanic DMS concentrations computed from 4 years (1998-2001) of Chl a measurements derived from SeaWiFS (satellite-based, sea-viewing wide field of view sensor) exhibits lower seasonal variability in the southern hemisphere than in the northern hemisphere. A first evaluation of the method shows that it reasonably well represents DMSP(p) and DMS in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre, in large blooms of mixed populations of diatoms and Phaeocystis spp., and in massive blooms of Phaeocystis spp. but fails for large, almost pure blooms of diatoms. DMSP(p) and DMS concentrations derived from SeaWiFS were also compared with spatially and temporally coincident in situ measurements acquired independently in the Atlantic between 39degreesN and 45degreesN and in subtropical and subantarctic Indian Ocean surface waters. Moderate spring and summer phytoplankton blooms there exhibited similar trends in DMSP(p) and DMS levels vs. moderate blooms of mixed populations of prymnesiophytes and dinoflagellates investigated by others. Measured DMS largely exceeded simulated DMS concentrations, whereas measured and simulated DMSP(p) levels were in close agreement. DMS accumulation is tentatively attributed to dinoflagellate DMSP lyase activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)804-816
Number of pages13
JournalCanadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May-2004
Event3rd International Symposium on Biological and Environmental Chemistry of DMS(P) and Related Compounds - , Canada
Duration: 26-Sept-200228-Sept-2002



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