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Quantifying carbon fluxes from primary production to mesopelagic fish using a simple food web model

Quantifying carbon fluxes from primary production to mesopelagic fish using a simple food web model
Quantifying carbon fluxes from primary production to mesopelagic fish using a simple food web model

An ecosystem-based flow analysis model was used to study carbon transfer from primary production (PP) to mesopelagic fish via three groups of copepods: Detritivores that access sinking particles, vertical migrators, and species that reside in the surface ocean. The model was parameterized for 40°S to 40°N in the world ocean such that results can be compared with recent estimates of mesopelagic fish biomass in this latitudinal range, based on field studies using acoustic technologies, of ∼13 Gt (wet weight). Mesopelagic fish production was predicted to be 0.32% of PP which, assuming fish longevity of 1.5 years, gives rise to predicted mesopelagic fish biomass of 2.4 Gt. Model ensembles were run to analyse the uncertainty of this estimate, with results showing predicted biomass >10 Gt in only 8% of the simulations. The work emphasizes the importance of migrating animals in transferring carbon from the surface ocean to the mesopelagic zone. It also highlights how little is known about the physiological ecology of mesopelagic fish, trophic pathways within the mesopelagic food web, and how these link to PP in the surface ocean. A deeper understanding of these interacting factors is required before the potential for utilizing mesopelagic fish as a harvestable resource can be robustly assessed.

copepod, detritus, diel vertical migration, mesopelagic fish, mesopelagic food web
1054-3139
690-701
Anderson, Thomas R.
dfed062f-e747-48d3-b59e-2f5e57a8571d
Martin, Adrian P.
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Lampitt, Richard S.
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Trueman, Clive N.
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Henson, Stephanie A.
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Mayor, Daniel J.
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Link, Jason
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Anderson, Thomas R.
dfed062f-e747-48d3-b59e-2f5e57a8571d
Martin, Adrian P.
9d0d480d-9b3c-44c2-aafe-bb980ed98a6d
Lampitt, Richard S.
dfc3785c-fc7d-41fa-89ee-d0c6e27503ad
Trueman, Clive N.
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Henson, Stephanie A.
d6532e17-a65b-4d7b-9ee3-755ecb565c19
Mayor, Daniel J.
a2a9c29e-ffdc-4858-ad65-3a235824a4c9
Link, Jason
c048919b-0774-49d3-86da-df3a0917b3a3

Anderson, Thomas R., Martin, Adrian P., Lampitt, Richard S., Trueman, Clive N., Henson, Stephanie A., Mayor, Daniel J. and Link, Jason (2018) Quantifying carbon fluxes from primary production to mesopelagic fish using a simple food web model. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 76 (3), 690-701, [fsx234]. (doi:10.1093/icesjms/fsx234).

Record type: Article

Abstract

An ecosystem-based flow analysis model was used to study carbon transfer from primary production (PP) to mesopelagic fish via three groups of copepods: Detritivores that access sinking particles, vertical migrators, and species that reside in the surface ocean. The model was parameterized for 40°S to 40°N in the world ocean such that results can be compared with recent estimates of mesopelagic fish biomass in this latitudinal range, based on field studies using acoustic technologies, of ∼13 Gt (wet weight). Mesopelagic fish production was predicted to be 0.32% of PP which, assuming fish longevity of 1.5 years, gives rise to predicted mesopelagic fish biomass of 2.4 Gt. Model ensembles were run to analyse the uncertainty of this estimate, with results showing predicted biomass >10 Gt in only 8% of the simulations. The work emphasizes the importance of migrating animals in transferring carbon from the surface ocean to the mesopelagic zone. It also highlights how little is known about the physiological ecology of mesopelagic fish, trophic pathways within the mesopelagic food web, and how these link to PP in the surface ocean. A deeper understanding of these interacting factors is required before the potential for utilizing mesopelagic fish as a harvestable resource can be robustly assessed.

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Accepted/In Press date: 4 December 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 5 January 2018
Keywords: copepod, detritus, diel vertical migration, mesopelagic fish, mesopelagic food web

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 434576
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/434576
ISSN: 1054-3139
PURE UUID: 4b01a1f1-7b99-45bf-bb6d-fd109a6b3a7f

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Date deposited: 02 Oct 2019 16:30
Last modified: 16 Dec 2019 17:31

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