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Plankton

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    Our objective is to put in place a monitoring program for the eastern North Pacific and southern Bering Sea region. Large scale changes in Pacific salmon populations in all regions of North America have been related to climate change in this century. The likely initial cause is changes in the structure of the ocean and atmosphere. These changes are known to affect the abundance, productivity, and community structure of continental shelf and open ocean plankton communities. Changes in plankton abundance have been related to the changes in salmon abundance, and reduced ocean productivity is probably the causal link leading to poor ocean survival for salmon. Climate changes experienced in recent years are consistent with expectations from models for early stages of global warming. In all regions of the West Coast of North America there have been extremely sudden changes in the productivity of salmon populations. These changes have not been expected from the standard fisheries management theories, nor could they be forecast from available data. However, the changes have had devastating economic impacts on coastal communities from Oregon to (most recently) Alaska. The pattern of failure in year-class strength of Bristol Bay sockeye salmon and other stocks and species demonstrates that the cause of the sudden downturn has in large part a marine origin. However, salmon spend part of their life history in both coastal and oceanic marine environments, and are therefore subject to environmental changes occurring in both regions. We seek to put in place a monitoring framework using the Hardy Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR). This is an established technology widely used in the North Atlantic. The changes that the Atlantic CPR program have documented in the 1990s are now being linked to the decline in Atlantic salmon populations, that are also experiencing substantially increased ocean mortality. Our project involves sampling of the plankton in multiple regions of the offshore and coastal regions of the eastern North Pacific and southern Bering Sea. The monitoring lines will (a) sample the plankton along the coastal migration routes of the juvenile salmon in four locations, (b) quantify the distribution and abundance of shelf plankton populations in the Atlantic (Steele 1998; the relationship of shelf to offshore populations is unclear in the Pacific because of a lack of data), and (c) permit cross-comparisons with almost all existing eastern Pacific ocean surveys (CalCOFI in California; Line P in Canada; and GAK-1 near Seward, Alaska). This project also includes; Dr. Sonia Batten, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science, 1 Walker Terrace, The Hoe, Plymouth, United Kingdom PL1 3BN, 44 1752 221-112 soba@wpo.nerc.ac.uk An NPMR project

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    Some very tiny plants play a very big role in the world's oceans, but there aren't as many of these plants as there used to be. As Doug Schneider reports in this week's Arctic Science Journeys Radio, global warming is reducing the levels of phytoplankton in the world's oceans, and that includes the North Pacific Ocean off Alaska.

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    A collection of zooplankton biomass data sampled aboard multiple cruises aboard the R/V Vityaz available through COPEPOD.See the cruise summary web page for a detailed list of cruise dates, number of tows and sampled data. Data can be directly downloaded from the COPEPOD website. Coastal & Oceanic Plankton Ecology, Production & Observation Database (COPEPOD) is an on-line global plankton database by NOAA - National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).Data were digitized from manuscript in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission - Global Oceanographic Data Archaeology & Rescue Project (IOC-GODAR), with funding from NOAA ESDIM and Global Climate Change programs.

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    This data will be include 13C uptake and 15N-NO3, 15N-NH4, and 15N-Urea uptake rate in the Southeastern Bering Sea Shelf area. Nutrients and Chlorophyll data are incorporated in Nutrients data section of T.E. Whitledge.

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    Zooplankton biomass data collected during R/V Pioneer Cruise 66 available through COPEPOD.See the cruise summary web page for a detailed list of cruise dates, number of tows and sampled data. Data can be directly downloaded from the COPEPOD website. Coastal & Oceanic Plankton Ecology, Production & Observation Database (COPEPOD) is an on-line global plankton database by NOAA - National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).Data were digitized from manuscript in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission - Global Oceanographic Data Archaeology & Rescue Project (IOC-GODAR), with funding from NOAA ESDIM and Global Climate Change programs.

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    The National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI) conducted annual surveys in the Bering Sea on regular survey tracklines. Water temperature and salinity profile data were collected at 40 oceanographic research stations by a CTD system. At each CTD station chlorophyll and Zooplankton abundance were measured. Zooplankton were sampled with a bongo net using a 333 micron mesh codend and sorted to genus. The surveys, which were conducted mainly during May-July by the Korean R/V Pusan 851 between 1994-1997, covered the Donut Hole, the Bering Sea shelf and the Bogoslof area. There was no survey in 1998. The Korean R/V Tam Gu conducted the survey in 1999.

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    Plankton samples were collected in the western Bering Sea and Chukchi Sea by the Russian R/V TINRO from July to October 2003. A Juday net (area of the mouth opening - 0.1 m 2 , kapron mesh # 49, mesh size - 0.168 mm) was used aboard the R/V TINRO during both daytime and nighttime hours.

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    CTD sections, acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP), transects, ocean color optical data. Data that are ground truth ship observations for NPMR "Influence of mesoscale eddies on shelf-slope exchange".

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    In this chapter we describe variation in the distribution of Phytoplankton species associations, total Phytoplankton numbers, biomass and chlorophyll a concentration in oceanic and shelf Phytoplankton communities. In the oceanic domain, numbers of picophytoplankton dominate during all periods of seasonal succession, followed by nanophytoplankton.

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    To date, most lower trophic level research on the eastern Bering Sea shelf has concentrated on the role of the spring diatom bloom as the main annual production event. Over the Middle Shelf Domain, primary and secondary productions occur throughout the summer supported by regenerated nutrients. During this period, standing stock of chlorophyll is relatively low (0.5 - 2 µg/l). Periodic outbreaks of diatoms can occur in response to erosion of the pycnocline and injection of nitrate and silicate into the surface waters. Between these outbreaks, nano- and microzooplankton (<200 µm) are hypothesized to dominate nutrient cycling. During these periods microzooplankton may also provide the intermediary link between small flagellated primary producers and food for juvenile fishes. Recent recurring "blooms" of the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi require us to achieve a better understanding of summertime nutrient recycling and trophic transfer so that we can predict the effect, if any, E. huxleyi will have on higher trophic levels. We plan to dissect the summer pelagic food web and nutrient cycle of the Middle Shelf Domain to determine the relative contribution of microzooplankton to these processes. Specifically we will investigate nutrient cycling and trophic transfer during two distinct phytoplankton communities: small flagellates (coccolithophores or other species) and diatoms. Juvenile Pollock, a nodal species in the Bering Sea ecosystem, forage on particle-grazing mesozooplankton and variations in summer food supply may affect their ability to accumulate energy stores for the harsh Subarctic winters. This project also includes; Evelyn Lessard University of Washington Jeffrey Napp Alaska Fisheries Science Center, NOAA 7600 Sand Point Way NE Seattle, WA 98115 jeff.napp@noaa.gov An NPMR project