Spatiotemporal Dissolved Silicate Variation, Sources, and Behavior in the Eutrophic Zhanjiang Bay, China
Dissolved silicate (DSi) is an important nutrient in coastal water, which is used by planktonic diatoms for cell division and growth. In this study, surface water samples were collected in the eutrophic Zhanjiang Bay (ZJB) in 2019, covering a seasonal variation of coastal water and land-based source water discharge. The spatiotemporal DSi distribution, land-based sources flux input and behaviors in ZJB were studied and discussed. The results show that the DSi concentration had significant
... d significant differences in spatiotemporal scale. The average concentration of DSi in ZJB was 38.00 ± 9.48 μmol·L−1 in spring, 20.23 ± 11.27 μmol·L−1 in summer, 12.48 ± 1.42 μmol·L−1 in autumn and 11.96 ± 4.85 μmol·L−1 in winter. The spatiotemporal DSi distribution showed a decreasing gradient from the top to the mouth of ZJB, which was affected by land source inputs and hydrodynamics. The land-based sources' input concentration of DSi in ZJB ranged from 0.021 to 0.46 mol·L−1, with an average of 0.14 mol·L−1, and the total annual flux of DSi was 1.06 × 109 mol, comprising up to 8.28%, 41.55% and 50.17% in dry, normal, and wet seasons, respectively. The Suixi River contributed the highest DSi flux proportion in all seasons. The DSi in land-based source water was mainly affected by water flow discharge, diatom uptake and impacts from anthropogenic activities. Compared with dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and dissolved inorganic phosphorus (DIP), the DSi was the limitation nutrient in ZJB. Additionally, the DSi concentration in the coastal water was negatively correlated with salinity. The seasonal DSi/DIN and DSi/DIP ratios in land-based sources discharge water was significantly higher than that in coastal water (p < 0.05). Land-based sources of DSi input played an important role in nutrients composition that sustained diatoms as the dominant species in ZJB.