Euphausia Superba or Salpa Thompsoni – Who is going to win?
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree LevelPostgraduate Certificate
Degree NamePostgraduate Certificate in Antarctic Studies
Antarctic krill Euphausia superba and the salp Salpa thompsoni are major grazers in the Antarctic ecosystem, in which krill plays a major role in the link between primary producers and higher trophic levels. Both species are widely distributed in the Southern Ocean, but they exhibit a spatial segregation. Krill is predominantly found in colder waters of the high latitudes, whereas salps occupy warmer water masses in the lower latitudes. Over the last decades a shift in salp distribution into regions further south has been observed. Simultaneously krill abundance in those areas has decreased. This might indicate that a large-scale environmental shift in Antarctic regions may have occurred, or is in progress which will have major impacts on the cycling of biogenic carbon the Southern Ocean as well as on krilldependent species.
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