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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Mark S. Brunell

First Committee Member

C. Greg Anderson

Second Committee Member

Patrick Kociolek

Third Committee Member

Gary Litton

Fourth Committee Member

Stacy Luthy


Several species of the diatom genus Thalassiosira Cleve, were observed in freshwater phytoplankton samples collected from a fifty-two kilometer reach of the San Joaquin River in the vicinity of Stockton, California, USA. The study was conducted between the South Airport Way bridge near Vernalis and the Stockton Deep Water Ship Channel during fall and summer of both 2005 and 2006. The entire reach is freshwater habitat with the lower twenty-eight km strongly influenced by tidal flow reversals driven by the San Francisco Estuary. Ninety four whole water samples were collected from surface waters during the months of July, August, September and October in 2005 and the months of July and August in 2006. Six species of Thalassiosira were identified using scanning electron and light microscopy: T. weissjlogii (Grunow), T. gessneri Hustedt, T. lacustris (Grunow), T. visurgis (Grunow), T. decipiens (Grunow), and T. incerta (Makarova).

Of the species observed, only T. weissjlogii has been previously reported in the freshwater portion of the San Joaquin River. The other five species have been previously reported from sites in the San Joaquin- San Francisco Estuary characterized as brackish, suggesting they are distributed in waters of various salinities ranging from freshwater to brackish within the river and estuary.



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