Vertical distribution and diel vertical migration of krill beneath snow-covered ice and in ice-free waters

Abstract
A bottom mounted upward looking Simrad EK60 120-kHz echo sounder was used to study scattering layers (SLs) and individuals of the krill Meganyctiphanes norvegica. The mooring was situated at 150-m depth in the Oslofjord, connected with an onshore cable for power and transmission of digitized data. Records spanned 5 months from late autumn to spring. A current meter and CTD was associated with the acoustic mooring and a shore-based webcam monitored ice conditions in the fjord. The continuous measurements were supplemented with intermittent krill sampling campaigns and their physical and biological environment.The krill carried out diel vertical migration (DVM) throughout the winter, regardless of the distribution of potential prey. The fjord froze over in mid-winter and the daytime distribution of a mid-water SL of krill immediately became shallower associated with snow fall after freezing, likely related to reduction of light intensities. Still, a fraction of the population always descended all the way to the bottom, so that the krill population by day seemed to inhabit waters with light levels spanning up to six orders of magnitude. Deep-living krill ascended in synchrony with the rest of the population in the afternoon, but individuals consistently reappeared in near-bottom waters already? 1 h after the ascent. Thereafter, the krill appeared to undertake asynchronous migrations, with some krill always being present in near-bottom waters even though the entire population appeared to undertake DVM. The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

Citation
Vestheim H, Rostad A, Klevjer TA, Solberg I, Kaartvedt S (2013) Vertical distribution and diel vertical migration of krill beneath snow-covered ice and in ice-free waters. Journal of Plankton Research 36: 503-512. doi:10.1093/plankt/fbt112.

Publisher
Oxford University Press (OUP)

Journal
Journal of Plankton Research

DOI
10.1093/plankt/fbt112

PubMed ID
24616550

PubMed Central ID
PMC3945875

Permanent link to this record