Title

Myctophid Feeding Ecology and Carbon Transport Along the Northern Mid-Atlantic Ridge

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-2014

Publication Title

Deep-Sea Research Part I - Oceanographic Research Papers

Keywords

Lanternfish, Diet, Zooplankton, Mesopelagic, Diel vertical migration, Biological pump, Fishes family Myctophidae, Benthosema-Glaciale, Predation impact, Bloom experiment, Migrant mesozooplankton, Transitional waters, Community structure, Equatorial Pacific

ISSN

0967-0637

Volume

93

First Page

104

Last Page

116

Abstract

Myctophids are among the most abundant fishes in the world׳s ocean and occupy a key position in marine pelagic food webs. Through their significant diel vertical migrations and metabolism they also have the potential to be a significant contributor to carbon export. We investigated the feeding ecology and contribution to organic carbon export by three myctophid species, Benthosema glaciale, Protomyctophum arcticum, and Hygophum hygomii, from a structurally and ecologically unique ecosystem- the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR). Similar to the results of previous studies, the diet of these fishes was primarily copepods and euphausiids, however, gelatinous zooplankton was identified in the diet of B. glaciale for the first time. Ridge section and time of day were significant explanatory variables in the diet of B. glaciale as determined by canonical correspondence analysis, while depth was the only significant explanatory variable in the diet of P. arcticum. Daily consumption by MAR myctophids was less than 1% of dry body weight per day and resulted in the removal of less than 1% of zooplankton biomass daily. Although lower than previous estimates of carbon transport by myctophids and zooplankton in other areas, MAR myctophid active transport by diel vertical migration was equivalent to up to 8% of sinking particulate organic carbon in the North Atlantic. While highly abundant, myctophids do not impart significant predation pressure on MAR zooplankton, and play a modest role in the active transport of carbon from surface waters.

Comments

©2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Additional Comments

NSF grant #: OCE 0623551

ORCID ID

0000-0002-5280-7071

DOI

10.1016/j.dsr.2014.07.002

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