Seasonal variability is one of the most powerful components in multiple scale variations of plankton communities. A comparison of the seasonal blooms of Noctiluca scintillans in individual basins is combined with a statistical analysis of the relationships between this species and environmental forcing factors. Seasonal patterns of Noctiluca scintillans abundance throughout the Bay of Biscay, the North Sea, the Black Sea, the Sea of Azov, the Sea of Marmara, the Adriatic Sea, the Arabian Sea, Bay of Bengal, the eastern Australian shelf and the Japanese shelf pointed to the persistence of unimodal and bimodal algal blooms, of which unimodal are most common. In general, the duration of the monsoon-induced blooms exceeds that of the temperate regions. A Principal Component Analysis of blooms and environmental characteristics over regions indicated maximal magnitudes of Noctiluca blooms occurring at a medium kinetic energy of mesoscale eddies (from 0.06 to 0.12 m2 s−2), medium-to-high total concentration of nutrients (from 3 to 30μmol), and high wind stress (from 0.04 to 0.07 N m−2).
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