The project will be completed in 2020. Data on the temporal and spatial reproductive patterns of the important marine copepod Calanus finmarchicus have been collected off Lofoten and on the north-Norwegian shelf in years 1 and 2. In the 3rd year, the data set will be complemented with data from an overlapping geographical area sampled in both years, wherethe 2018 gonad stages have not yet been determined. Information on the timing and small-scale spatial variability of reproduction and recruitment in large Calanus patches will facilitate predictions of potential shifts in recruitment phenology with climate warming. Alterations in reproductive output and/or timing of the peak occurrence of early life stages may affect the ecosystem services Calanus populations provide, especially essential food for the larvae of commercial fish species such as herring and cod. We compare egg production data from live incubations of females with gonad maturity stages and estimates of potential spawning rates from gonad stage analysis in preserved females. Our data will complement stock size analyses and Calanus population stage indexing in the NFR-funded project SeaPatches. In turn, GONAD will benefit from a wealth of physical and biological data collected during SeaPatches to relate reproductive rates to the prevailing environmental conditions. In a comparison with historical published data from southern Norway, the project will produce valuable and timely knowledge about Calanus life history patterns that drive important fisheries in Norway.
Project manager: Claudia Halsband
Project code: 466 262019