Winter–spring climate effects on small-sized copepods in the coastal Baltic Sea.

Klais, Riina, Otto, Saskia A., Teder, Marilyn, Simm, Mart and Ojaveer, Henn (2017) Winter–spring climate effects on small-sized copepods in the coastal Baltic Sea. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 74 (7). pp. 1855-1864. DOI 10.1093/icesjms/fsx036.

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The general positive effect of warmer winters on the abundance of small-sized zooplankton in the following spring and early summer has been reported from different parts of the Baltic Sea, but the mechanism of this link is not clear. Although causal links cannot be deduced with confidence from observational data, sufficiently detailed analyses can nevertheless provide insights to the potential mechanisms. We present an example of such an analysis, scrutinizing the effects of winter and spring hydroclimate on the abundance of small-sized dominant calanoid copepods (Eurytemora affinis and Acartia spp.), using data from 2080 zooplankton samples collected over 55 years (1957–2012) from a shallow coastal habitat (Pärnu Bay, Gulf of Riga) in the Baltic Sea. Our results indicated that the milder winters brought about higher abundances, and reduced seasonality of small-sized copepods, whereas ambient sea surface temperature (SST) mostly affected the relative abundance of adult stages. The sliding window correlation tests revealed temporal shifts in the effects of controlling variables: with the continuous increase in SST, the effect of winter temperature on the abundance of Acartia spp. weakened. In contrast, E. affinis was consistently affected by SST, but the effect of winter temperature was more pronounced during the period of on average colder winters.

Document Type: Article
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
Publisher: Oxford Univ. Press
Projects: BONUS BIO-C3
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2017 12:09
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2020 09:05

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