Through photosynthesis, phytoplankton are responsible for much of the oxygen present in the Earth's atmosphere—half of the total amount produced by all plant life (EO 2005).
The production of phytoplankton under artificial conditions is itself a form of aquaculture.
Phytoplankton is used as a foodstock for the production of rotifers (McVey et al.
Phytoplankton most commonly obtain energy through the biological process called photosynthesis.
The term phytoplankton includes all planktonic, photoautotrophic microorganisms in aquatic food webs.
Phytoplankton is cultured for a variety of purposes, including as foodstock for other aquacultured organisms, a nutritional supplement for captive invertebrates in aquaria, and as a source of bio-diesel.
The name phytoplankton comes from the Greek words phyton, meaning "plant," and planktos (????????), meaning "wanderer" or "drifter" (Thurman 1997).
Large-scale experiments have added iron (usually as salts such as iron sulphate) to the oceans to promote phytoplankton growth and draw atmospheric CO2 into the ocean.
Most phytoplankton are too small to be individually seen with the unaided eye.
Diatoms are one of the most common types of phytoplankton and are found in large numbers in almost all waters of the world, freshwater and saline (as well as in moist soil and other environments).
In aquaculture, phytoplankton must be obtained and introduced directly.
Phytoplankton's cumulative energy fixation in carbon compounds (primary production) is the basis for the vast majority of oceanic and also many freshwater food webs.
Phytoplankton also serve as a key food item in both aquaculture and mariculture.
Phytoplankton is also used in many varieties of aquacultured mollusks, including pearl oysters and giant clams.
Light must be provided for the growth of phytoplankton.
Phytoplankton are the autotrophic component of the plankton community.
Phytoplankton provide an essential ecological function for all aquatic life by serving as the base of the aquatic food web.
Overall, there are about 5,000 described species of marine phytoplankton (Hallegreff 2003).
Phytoplankton are a key food item in both aquaculture and mariculture.
Both utilize phytoplankton for the feeding of the animals being farmed.