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The demography of Calanus pacificus during winter–spring Californian El Niño conditions, 1992–1993: implications for anchovy?

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Samples from the southern California sector of the California Current System were examined to test for changes in abundance, reproduction, recruitment and naupliar survival of the planktonic copepod, Calanus pacificus, coincident with the 1993 Californian El Niño, relative to 1992 (also El Niño conditions) and to 1989–1991 (defined as `normal'). In 1993, as in 1992, females were rare in both winter and spring, but per capita reproduction was less, food limitation was greater and biomass of chlorophyll was reduced only in winter. Recruitment was more variable than was naupliar survival. Recruitment increased in both El Niño springs, but survival of older naupliar stages decreased. The mesoscale distributions of larval anchovy, relative to eggs and nauplii of Calanus, did not result in efficient use of the reduced supply of this source of food, and the abundance of larval anchovy did not cause measurable variation in the survival of naupliar Calanus.

Keywords: Calanus; California Current; El Niño; anchovy; copepod; recruitment; reproduction; survival

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: Marine Life Research Group, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California, USA 92093–0218

Publication date: March 1, 1997


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