Experiments were performed to investigate transfer of 59Fe, 65Zn, 54Mn, and 15N from labeled cyanobacteria to the large (>8 μm or >5 μm) phytoplankton size class from Monterey Bay, California. Transfer of metal isotope activity was measured from and into total (for all isotopes) and intracellular (59Fe only) pools. Results demonstrated rapid and efficient transfer of nitrogen to the large phytoplankton size class; intracellular 59Fe was transferred into the intracellular and total pools of the >8 μm phytoplankton size class 70% and 130% as efficiently as nitrogen, respectively. 65Zn and 54Mn were transferred between size classes 48% and 23% as efficiently as N. Extracellular 59Fe and 65Zn from the added cyanobacteria also appeared quickly in the large size fraction, although most of the Fe transfer appeared to be the result of surface adsorption rather than biological uptake. These data are discussed in relation to the biological recycling efficiencies of the four elements and the resulting implications for biogeochemical cycling of trace and major nutrient elements.