Short-term Assessment of Phytoplankton Composition and Abundance in Cebu and Subic Bay Ports, Philippines

Nero M. Austero, Rhodora V. Azanza


A short-term study to evaluate the composition and abundance of marine diatoms and dinoflagellates in two major ports in the country was conducted in May 2015 and July 2015. Pseudo-nitszchia spp. bloom comprising about 42.3% of the total phytoplankton population was observed in Cebu International Port in May 2015. Furthermore, Chaetoceros spp. comprised about 53.58% of the total phytoplankton population in Naval Supply Depot (NSD) terminal in May 2015, while Thalassionema spp. and Leptocylindrus spp. accounted for 50.16% and 34.78%, respectively, of the total phytoplankton population in July 2015. Bloom-forming and potentially harmful species including diatoms, such as Coscinodiscus spp. , Nitzschia spp. , and Pseudo-nitzschia spp. , and dinoflagellates, such as Ceratium spp. , Ceratium furca, Gonyaulax spp. , Gymnodinium spp. , Linguludinium spp. , Phalacroma spp. , Prorocentrum micans, Prorocentrum spp., and the IOC-UNESCO listed Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) species Dinophysis caudate, were also recorded. The results of this study contribute to the establishment of baseline data for phytoplankton composition and abundance, which are necessary for the identif ication of potentially toxic/harmful microalgae which pose risks of ballast water inclusion and transport.

Keywords: Phytoplankton, ports, harmful algal blooms, diatoms, dinoflagellates

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