Effect of nitrogen and phosphorus supply on growth, chlorophyll content and tissue composition of the macroalga Chaetomorpha linum (O.F. Mull), Kutz, in a Mediterranean Coastal Lagoon
Menéndez, M., Herrera-Silveira, J., Comín, F. A. (Francisco A.)
Scientia Marina, 2002, vol. 66, num. 4, p. 355-364
In all the treatments an increase in biomass was obseved after 10 days. This increase was higher in the N+P treatments.
In all the treatments the uptake rate was significantly higher when nutrients were added than in control jars.
The uptake rate of N, as ammonium, and P were significantly higher when they were added alone while that of N as nitrate was higher in the N+P treatment. In the P-enriched cultures, the final P-content of macroalgal tissues was ten-fold that of the initial tissue concentrations, thereby indicating luxury P-uptake.
All pretty interesting – and I think somewhat surprising in some ways for many folks who use chaeto as part of their nutrient control.
Chaeto’s capacity for holding reserve N and P is probably sorely underestimated as a nutrient source that can help stabilize the system, where I think most folks only have the counter view that it’s assisting with nutrient removal – which it can, but only if used in a specific way. If you just grow chaeto, that’s not really what’s going on – it’s a lot more complex.
Folks also consistently underestimate the significance of seeing their chaeto stop growing. It’s fantastic at grabbing and holding nutrients, so if it stops growing that means your whole tank is most probably nutrient limited.
The article has a number of other interesting points, but I don’t want to steal the thunder – use the links above and go read it! 🙂