Biogeochemical Metabolism and Energy Flows in Reef Ecosystems

  • Yuri I. Sorokin
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 102)


The term “metabolism of reef communities” was first used by Odum and Odum (1955) in their prioneer work on the metabolism of communities at the Enivetok atoll, based upon the recording of diurnal fluctuations of oxygen content in waters over the reef. Later, for studies on primary production and calcification processes in reef communities, the measurements of fluctuations of CO2, pH, PO4-P in diurnal cycle, or downstream the waters surging up the reef from the ocean, were also employed. This approach could be called biogeochemical, and the metabolism of the whole biota of a given reef zone or biotope, the biogeochemical metabolism. It reflects the balance values of reciprocal flows of consumption and excretion of elements or compounds by different components of communities. The evaluations of rates of biogeochemical metabolism could therefore be also done by measuring them in separate components of communities, taking into account the relative areas they occupy on any given reef biotope or zone (Kinsey 1985b).


Reef Flat Patch Reef Algal Turf Reef Community Reef System 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuri I. Sorokin
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of OceanologyAcademy of SciencesGelendzhikCIS
  2. 2.Zoology DepartmentUniversity of QueenslandQueenslandAustralia

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