The chlorophyll a content was measured at 62 oceanographic stations. At each station samples were collected from eight standard depths between the water surface and 150 m. Integrated values (chlorophyll α mg/m2) are used in the presentation of the results and discussion. The recorded quantities of chlorophyll α were rather high, amounting to as much as 634 mg/m2. The areas with high chlorophyll a content (> 200 mg/m2) were located in the region of the Anvers Island and Brabant Island, on the shelf around Joinville Island and opposite the Antarctic Sound, close to Clarence Island and beyond the regions recommended in the BIOMASS-SIBEX programme to the east and south of the South Orkney Islands. In the acetonie extracts of photosynthetizing pigments large quantities of phytoxanthin were found using the TLC method, what precludes the use of the Lorenzen method for determination of chlorophyll α and its degradation products.
Results of an oceanographic survey along the edge of drifting pack ice in the area between Elephant Island and the South Orkney Islands are reported. The influence of sea ice on hydrological factors was very weak. It was not possible to develop oceanographic features characteristic for marginal sea-ice zones in the areas with well marked surface currents and dynamic hydrological conditions. The spatial distribution of chlorophyll was governed by water stability, although during our survey, areas with enhanced vertical stability could not be described in terms of a sea-ice edge influence.
In 1979 54 water samples were collected at two oceanographic stations located in Admiralty Bay. Ranges of seasonal changes were found for the values of ten parameters: water temperature, salinity, dissolved О, pH, the contents of PO4 , Si, NO2, NO3, chlorophyll α and plant carotenoids at six depths between surface and 400 m. Data for temperature and salinity showed the absence of distinct thermoclines or haloelines which reflects the very low stability of waters in the Bay. The concentrations of nutrients were high during the entire year and they were not limiting for phytoplankton growth. Only nitrates decreased distinctly during algal blooms. The high dynamics of waters in the Bay causes a lowering in the chlorophyll α content to a maximum of about 2 mg/m3. Oceanographic, hydrochemical and hydrological conditions in Admiralty Bay are typical for the Antarctic shelf waters in this geographical region.
Coarse-scale studies on chlorophyll a distribution in a region covering the Scotia Front zone showed an increased chlorophyll content and its deeper distribution at stations situated in the frontal zone. The sources of chlorophyll α were probably both the phytoplankton released from melting ice as well as spring bloom.
Chlorophyll a content and the density and species composition of algae were determined in drifting sea ice north of the Elephant Island (between 54-56°W and 60°30'—61°00'S) at the end of October 1986. In yellow-brownish pieces of brash ice the amount of chlorophyll α was on average 203.5 ± 149.9 mg m-3 at the density of algal cells of 255.7+137.8-103 in cm3. In not visibly discoloured ice the respective values were about 80 times lower, and in surface water about 700 times lower. 69 algal taxa were recorded in the samples, almost all of which were diatoms. Nitzschia cylindrus dominated in all the samples. A comparison of species composition in the investigated habitats revealed that the highest species similarities occurred between samples collected in discoloured ice, lower in the uncoloured ice and the lowest ones in water.
Four water masses were distinguished in the upper water layer between Elephant Island and the South Orkneys. Measurements of temperature, salinity, concentrations of dissolved oxygen and silicates were used for the analysis of the hydrological situation and to recognise the origin of water masses. For additional information, nitrates and chlorophyll concentrations were used. Drake Passage and Bransfield Strait waters occupied the western part of the investigated area, from surface to 150 m depth. Below, the Circumpolar Warm Deep Waters (CWDW) were found. The region east of 53.5°W was occupied by winter Weddell Sea water. Above this, a 45 m thin layer of summer modification of Weddell Sea Surface Water was found between 49°W and the South Orkneys. The highestchlorophyll α concentrations were found in this modified water.