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Forskningsartikel2012Vetenskapligt granskad

Ontogenetic and seasonal changes in diel vertical migration amplitude of the calanoid copepods Eurytemora affinis and Acartia spp. in a coastal area of the northern Baltic proper

Holliland, Per B.; Ahlbeck, Ida; Westlund, Erica; Hansson, Sture


We studied diel vertical migration (DVM) of the six copepodite stages of two of the most abundant crustacean zooplankton in the Baltic Sea, the calanoid copepods Eurytemora affinis and Acartia spp. The study was conducted monthly from May through October in a bay in the northwestern Baltic proper. Fish biomass, phytoplankton abundance and temperature were obtained in conjunction with the zooplankton sampling. Both copepod species performed DVM. With the exception of females, all E. affinis copepodite stages performed migrations of over 10 m with only a slight increase with the copepodite stage. Adult female E. affinis remained at depth with only slight upward movement at night. In Acartia spp., DVM amplitude increased with stage and size, suggesting an ontogenetic shift in behaviour; although they had a less pronounced DVM than E. affinis. Although DVM amplitude increased with size, indicative of visual predation, fish biomass did not correlate with the amplitude of DVM. However, fish were present throughout the study period. We surmise that these ontogenetic shifts in behaviour are due to size increase and therefore visibility to predators and that the difference in DVM between the species may well be a result of physiological differences and reproductive strategy.


weighted mean depth; Baltic Sea; zooplankton; thermocline; depth distribution

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Journal of Plankton Research
2012, Volym: 34, nummer: 4, sidor: 298-307

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