Benthic habitat is an integral part of freshwater Mysis ecology.
ABSTRACT: Diel vertical migration (DVM) is common in aquatic organisms. The trade-off between reduced predation risk in deeper, darker waters during the day and increased foraging opportunities closer to the surface at night is a leading hypothesis for DVM behaviour.Diel vertical migration behaviour has dominated research and assessment frameworks for Mysis, an omnivorous mid-trophic level macroinvertebrate that exhibits strong DVM between benthic and pelagic habitats and plays key roles in many deep lake ecosystems. However, some historical literature and more recent evidence indicate that mysids also remain on the bottom at night, counter to expectations of DVM.We surveyed the freshwater Mysis literature using Web of Science (WoS; 1945-2019) to quantify the frequency of studies on demographics, diets, and feeding experiments that considered, assessed, or included Mysis that did not migrate vertically but remained in benthic habitats. We supplemented our WoS survey with literature searches for relevant papers published prior to 1945, journal articles and theses not listed in WoS, and additional references known to the authors but missing from WoS (e.g. only 47% of the papers used to evaluate in situ diets were identified by WoS).Results from the survey suggest that relatively little attention has been paid to the benthic components of Mysis ecology. Moreover, the literature suggests that reliance on Mysis sampling protocols using pelagic gear at night provides an incomplete picture of Mysis populations and their role in ecosystem structure and function.We summarise current knowledge of Mysis DVM and provide an expanded framework that more fully considers the role of benthic habitat. Acknowledging benthic habitat as an integral part of Mysis ecology will enable research to better understand the role of Mysis in food web processes.
Project description:Diel vertical migration (DVM) is often assumed to encompass an entire population. However, bimodal nighttime vertical distributions have been observed in various taxa. Mysid shrimp populations also display this pattern with one group concentrated in the pelagia and the other near the bottom. This may indicate alternative migratory strategies, resembling the seasonal partial migrations seen in birds, fishes and amphibians, where only a subset of the population migrates. To assess the persistence of these alternative strategies, we analyzed the nitrogen and carbon stable isotope signatures (as proxies for diet), biochemical indices (as proxies for growth condition), and genetic population divergence in the Baltic mysid Mysis salemaai collected at night in the pelagia and close to the bottom. Stable isotope signatures were significantly different between migrants (pelagic samples) and residents (benthic samples), indicating persistent diet differences, with pelagic mysids having a more uniform and carnivorous diet. Sequencing of the mitochondrial cytochrome subunit I (COI) gene showed genetic differentiation attributable to geographic location but not between benthic and pelagic groups. Divergent migration strategies were however supported by significantly lower gene flow between benthic populations indicating that these groups have a lower predisposition for horizontal migrations compared to pelagic ones. Different migration strategies did not convey measurable growth benefits as pelagic and benthic mysids had similar growth condition indices. Thus, the combination of ecological, biochemical and genetic markers indicate that this partial migration may be a plastic behavioral trait that yields equal growth benefits.
Project description:High-latitude environments show extreme seasonal variation in physical and biological variables. The classic paradigm of Arctic marine ecosystems holds that most biological processes slow down or cease during the polar night. One key process that is generally assumed to cease during winter is diel vertical migration (DVM) of zooplankton. DVM constitutes the largest synchronized movement of biomass on the planet, and is of paramount importance for marine ecosystem function and carbon cycling. Here we present acoustic data that demonstrate a synchronized DVM behaviour of zooplankton that continues throughout the Arctic winter, in both open and ice-covered waters. We argue that even during the polar night, DVM is regulated by diel variations in solar and lunar illumination, which are at intensities far below the threshold of human perception. We also demonstrate that winter DVM is stronger in open waters compared with ice-covered waters. This suggests that the biologically mediated vertical flux of carbon will increase if there is a continued retreat of the Arctic winter sea ice cover.
Project description:One of the greatest cyclical patterns in the pelagic ecosystem is the daily vertical migration of various zooplankton and fish to depth, a process referred to as diel vertical migration (DVM). DVM is considered to be energetically costly as tiny plankton migrate hundreds of meters in a 24 hour period. To study the metabolic demands of DVM, the copepod Pleuromamma xiphias was collected during upwards and downwards migration off of Bermuda. Data-dependent acquisition on the Q-Exactive detected >1600 proteins, 180 of which were differentially abundant between the two sampling periods.
Project description:Diel vertical migration (DVM), the daily movement of organisms through oceanic water columns, is mainly driven by spatio-temporal variations in the light affecting the intensity of predator-prey interactions. Migration patterns of an organism are intrinsically linked to the distribution of its conspecifics, its prey and its predators, each with their own fitness-seeking imperatives. We present a mechanistic, trait-based model of DVM for the different components of a pelagic community. Specifically, we consider size, sensory mode and feeding mode as key traits, representing a community of copepods that prey on each other and are, in turn, preyed upon by fish. Using game-theoretic principles, we explore the optimal distribution of the main groups of a planktonic pelagic food web simultaneously. Within one single framework, our model reproduces a whole suite of observed patterns, such as size-dependent DVM patterns of copepods and reverse migrations. These patterns can only be reproduced when different trophic levels are considered at the same time. This study facilitates a quantitative understanding of the drivers of DVM, and is an important step towards mechanistically underpinned predictions of DVM patterns and biologically mediated carbon export.
Project description:Dramatic population declines among species of pelagic shark as a result of overfishing have been reported, with some species now at a fraction of their historical biomass. Advanced telemetry techniques enable tracking of spatial dynamics and behaviour, providing fundamental information on habitat preferences of threatened species to aid conservation. We tracked movements of the highest pelagic fisheries by-catch species, the blue shark Prionace glauca, in the North-east Atlantic using pop-off satellite-linked archival tags to determine the degree of space use linked to habitat and to examine vertical niche. Overall, blue sharks moved south-west of tagging sites (English Channel; southern Portugal), exhibiting pronounced site fidelity correlated with localized productive frontal areas, with estimated space-use patterns being significantly different from that of random walks. Tracked female sharks displayed behavioural variability in diel depth preferences, both within and between individuals. Diel depth use ranged from normal DVM (nDVM; dawn descent, dusk ascent), to reverse DVM (rDVM; dawn ascent, dusk descent), to behavioural patterns where no diel differences were apparent. Results showed that blue sharks occupy some of the most productive marine zones for extended periods and structure diel activity patterns across multiple spatio-temporal scales in response to particular habitat types. In so doing, sharks occupied an extraordinarily broad vertical depth range for their size (1.0-2.0 m fork length), from the surface into the bathypelagic realm (max. dive depth, 1160 m). The space-use patterns of blue sharks indicated they spend much of the time in areas where pelagic longlining activities are often highest, and in depth zones where these fisheries particularly target other species, which could account for the rapid declines recently reported for blue sharks in many parts of the world's oceans. Our results provide habitat targets for blue shark conservation that may also be relevant to other pelagic species.
Project description:Diel vertical migration (DVM) of zooplankton is a global phenomenon, characteristic of both marine and limnic environments. At high latitudes, patterns of DVM have been documented, but rather little knowledge exists regarding which species perform this ecologically important behaviour. Also, in the Arctic, the vertically migrating components of the zooplankton community are usually regarded as a single sound scattering layer (SSL) performing synchronized patterns of migration directly controlled by ambient light. Here, we present evidence for hitherto unknown complexity of Arctic marine systems, where zooplankton form multiple aggregations through the water column seen via acoustics as distinct SSLs. We show that while the initiation of DVM during the autumnal equinox is light mediated, the vertical positioning of the migrants during day is linked more to the thermal characteristics of water masses than to irradiance. During night, phytoplankton biomass is shown to be the most important factor determining the vertical positioning of all migrating taxa. Further, we develop a novel way of representing acoustic data in the form of a Sound Image (SI) that enables a direct comparison of the relative importance of each potential scatterer based upon the theoretical contribution of their backscatter. Based on our comparison of locations with contrasting hydrography, we conclude that a continued warming of the Arctic is likely to result in more complex ecotones across the Arctic marine system.
Project description:Understanding the links between foraging behaviour and habitat use of key species is essential to addressing fundamental questions about trophic interactions and ecosystem functioning. Eight female grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) were equipped with time-depth recorders linked to Fastloc GPS tags following the annual moult in southwest Ireland. Individual dives were coupled with environmental correlates to investigate the habitat use and dive behaviour of free-ranging seals. Dives were characterised as either pelagic, benthic, or shallow (where errors in location and charted water depth made differentiating between pelagic and benthic dives unreliable). Sixty-nine percent of dives occurring in water >50 m were benthic. Pelagic dives were more common at night than during the day. Seals performed more pelagic dives over fine sediments (mud/sand), and more benthic dives when foraging over more three-dimensionally complex rock substrates. We used Markov chain analysis to determine the probability of transiting between dive states. A low probability of repeat pelagic dives suggests that pelagic prey were encountered en route to the seabed. This approach could be applied to make more accurate predictions of habitat use in data-poor areas, and investigate contentious issues such as resource overlap and competition between top predators and fisheries, essential for the effective conservation of these key marine species.
Project description:ObjectiveTo practice evidence-based medicine, clinicians must be competent in information literacy (IL). Few studies acknowledge the critical role that reading strategies play in IL instruction and assessment of health professional students. The purpose of this study was to understand the information-seeking and evaluation behaviors of doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM) students in regard to scientific papers.MethodsThe authors studied DVM student behaviors across eight programs in North America using a web-based survey of closed- and open-ended questions about finding and evaluating scientific papers, including a task to read a linked scientific paper and answer questions about it.ResultsA total of 226 individuals responded to the survey. The sections of a scientific paper that were most commonly read were the abstract, introduction, and conclusions. Students who reported reading a higher proportion of scientific papers were more likely to feel confident in their abilities to interpret them. A third of respondents answered open-ended questions after the paper reading task. Respondents felt the least amount of confidence with one of the final steps of evidence-based medicine, that of interpreting the significance of the paper to apply it in veterinary medicine.ConclusionsDVM students may lack the skills needed to evaluate scientific literature and need more practice and feedback in evaluating and interpreting scientific papers. Librarians who support DVM students can (1) help DVM students to efficiently evaluate scientific literature, (2) seek training opportunities in alternative modes of teaching and learning IL skills, and (3) partner with veterinary faculty and clinicians to provide students with practice and feedback in information evaluation.
Project description:Bioluminescence commonly influences pelagic trophic interactions at mesopelagic depths. Here we characterize a vertical gradient in structure of a generally low species diversity bioluminescent community at shallower epipelagic depths during the polar night period in a high Arctic fjord with in situ bathyphotometric sampling. Bioluminescence potential of the community increased with depth to a peak at 80?m. Community composition changed over this range, with an ecotone at 20-40?m where a dinoflagellate-dominated community transitioned to dominance by the copepod Metridia longa. Coincident at this depth was bioluminescence exceeding atmospheric light in the ambient pelagic photon budget, which we term the bioluminescence compensation depth. Collectively, we show a winter bioluminescent community in the high Arctic with vertical structure linked to attenuation of atmospheric light, which has the potential to influence pelagic ecology during the light-limited polar night.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Free ranging foraging animals can vary their searching intensity in response to the profitability of the environment by modifying their movements. Marine diving animals forage in a three dimensional space and searching intensity can be varied in both the horizontal and vertical planes. Therefore understanding the relationship between the allocation of searching effort in these two spaces can provide a better understanding of searching strategies and a more robust identification of foraging behaviour from the multitude of foraging indices (FIs) available. We investigated the movement of a widespread marine coastal predator, the harbour seal (Phoca vitulina), and compared two sets of foraging indices reflecting searching intensity respectively in the horizontal plane (displacement speed, extensive vs. intensive movement types, residence time) and in the vertical dimension (time at the bottom of a dive). We then tested how several factors (dive depth, direction of the trip with respect to haul-out site, different predatory tactics, the presence of factors confounding the detection of foraging, and temporal resolution of the data) affected their relationships. RESULTS:Overall the indices only showed a very weak positive correlation across the two spaces. However controlling for various factors strengthened the relationships. Resting at sea, a behaviour intrinsically static in the horizontal plane, was found to be strongly negatively related to the time spent at the bottom of the dives, indirectly weakening the relationship between horizontal and vertical foraging indices. Predatory tactic (benthic vs. pelagic) was found to directly affect the relationship. In benthic (as opposed to pelagic) foraging a stronger positive relationship was found between vertical and horizontal indices. CONCLUSIONS:Our results indicated that movement responses, leading to an intensification of search, are similar in the two spaces (positive relationship), but additional factors need to be taken into account for this relationship to emerge. Foraging indices measuring residence in the horizontal plane tend to be inflated by resting events at sea, while vertical indices tend to distinguish mainly between periods of activity and inactivity, or of benthic and pelagic foraging. The simultaneous consideration of horizontal and vertical movements, as well as topographic information, allows additional behavioural states to be inferred, providing greater insight into the interpretation of foraging activity.