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Global zoogeography of fragile macrozooplankton in the upper 100-1000m inferred from the underwater video profiler

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posted on 2023-05-17, 00:52 authored by Stemmann, L, Youngbluth, M, Robert, K, Hosia, A, Picheral, M, Paterson, H, Ibanez, F, Guidi, L, Lombard, F, Gorsky, G
Mesopelagic gelatinous zooplankton fauna are insufficiently known because of inappropriate and infrequent sampling, but may have important trophic roles. In situ imaging systems and undersea vehicles have been used to investigate their diversity, distribution, and abundance. The use of different platforms, however, restricts the comparison of data from different regions. Starting in 2001, the underwater video profiler (UVP) was deployed during 12 cruises in six oceanic regimes (Mediterranean Sea, North Atlantic shelves, Mid-Atlantic Ridge, tropical Pacific Ocean, eastern Indian Ocean, and Subantarctic Ocean) to determine the vertical distribution of organisms in the upper 1000 m. Nine oceanic regions were identified based on the hydrological properties of the water column. They correspond to nine of the biogeochemical provinces defined by Longhurst. In all, 21 morphotypes were recognized: sarcodines (eight groups), ctenophores (two groups), siphonophores, medusae (five groups), crustaceans (one group), chaetognaths, appendicularians, salps, and fish. The similarity in the community assemblages of zooplankton in the 100–1000 m layer was significantly greater within regions than between regions, in most cases. The regions with comparable composition were located in the North Atlantic with adjacent water masses, suggesting that the assemblages were either mixed by advective transport or that environmental conditions were similar in mesopelagic layers. The data suggest that the spatial structuring of mesopelagic macrozooplankton occurs on large scales (e.g. basin scales) but not necessarily on smaller scales (e.g. oceanic front).


Publication title

ICES Journal of Marine Science








Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Oxford University Press

Place of publication

24-28 Oval Rd, London, England, Nw1 7Dx

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© 2008 The Author(s) This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems

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