Zooplankton are key components of pelagic food webs affecting the condition and recruitment success of commercially important species as well as affecting other ecologically important and vulnerable species such as marine mammals. Zooplankton distributions are patchy in space and time and influenced by physical processes differently at different temporal and spatial scales. Therefore, conventional net sampling methods are often insufficient to get the overall picture. Acoustics can overcome important knowledge gap in zooplankton ecology owing to the high resolution it provides. In order to acoustically quantify and map the distribution of zooplankton with confidence, representative samples of size and species composition is still necessary. The routine ichtioplankton surveys provide an excellent opportunity for collection both acoustic and biotic data as such. Feasibility of deriving relevant ecosystem indices from such data will be investigated in this project .
Following questions will be answered:
- Which components are the dominant sound scatterers in the mixed zooplankton assemblage of the North Sea
- What is the spatial and temporal variability in their distribution?
- What is the optimal configuration for collecting acoustic data during ichtioplankton surveys?
|Effective start/end date||1/01/18 → 31/12/18|