Interannual abundance changes of gelatinous carnivore zooplankton unveil climate-driven hydrographic variations in the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal

D'Ambrosio, Mariaelena, Molinero, Juan Carlos, Azeiteiro, Ulisses M., Pardal, Miguel A., Primo, Ana L., Nyitrai, Daniel and Marques, Sónia C. (2016) Interannual abundance changes of gelatinous carnivore zooplankton unveil climate-driven hydrographic variations in the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal Marine Environmental Research, 120 . pp. 103-110. DOI 10.1016/j.marenvres.2016.07.012.

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Abstract

Highlights

• The NAO shapes interannual changes of gelatinous carnivore zooplankton abundance.
• A main shift towards high abundances of gelatinous carnivores was detected ca. 2007.
• Earlier abundance peaks of gelatinous carnivores were driven by spring temperature.

Abstract

The persistent massive blooms of gelatinous zooplankton recorded during recent decades may be indicative of marine ecosystem changes. In this study, we investigated the potential influence of the North Atlantic climate (NAO) variability on decadal abundance changes of gelatinous carnivore zooplankton in the Mondego estuary, Portugal, over the period 2003–2013. During the 11-year study, the community of gelatinous carnivores encompassed a larger diversity of hydromedusae than siphonophores; the former dominated by Obelia spp., Lizzia blondina, Clythia hemisphaerica, Liriope tetraphylla and Solmaris corona, while the latter dominated by Muggiaea atlantica. Gelatinous carnivore zooplankton displayed marked interannual variability and mounting species richness over the period examined. Their pattern of abundance shifted towards larger abundances ca. 2007 and significant phenological changes. The latter included a shift in the mean annual pattern (from unimodal to bimodal peak, prior and after 2007 respectively) and an earlier timing of the first annual peak concurrent with enhanced temperatures. These changes were concurrent with the climate-driven environmental variability mainly controlled by the NAO, which displayed larger variance after 2007 along with an enhanced upwelling activity. Structural equation modelling allowed depicting cascading effects derived from the NAO influence on regional climate and upwelling variability further shaping water temperature. Such cascading effect percolated the structure and dynamics of the community of gelatinous carnivore zooplankton in the Mondego estuary.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Gelatinous carnivore zooplankton; North Atlantic climate; NAO; Upwelling; Mondego estuary
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EOE-N Experimental Ecology - Food Webs
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.marenvres.2016.07.012
ISSN: 0141-1136
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2016 09:33
Last Modified: 03 May 2017 12:20
URI: http://eprints.uni-kiel.de/id/eprint/33566

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