First description of the shelf epipelagic plankton layers at a Mediterranean basin-scale

Type Article
Acceptance Date 2022-07-27 IN PRESS
Language English
Author(s) Ventero AnaORCID1, Iglesias Magdalena1, Giannoulaki Marianna2, Pyrounaki Maria Myrto2, Leonori Iole3, de Felice Andrea3, Tičina Vjekoslav4, Saraux Claire5, Genovese Simona6, Baeza Josep7, Córdoba Pilar8, Kapelonis Zacharias2, Somarakis Stylianos2, Hattab Tarek5, Biagiotti Ilaria3, Malavolti Sara3, Juretić Tea4, Bourdeix Jean-Herve5, Basilone Gualtiero6, Ferreri Rosalia6, Aronica Salvatore6
Affiliation(s) 1 : Instituto Espanol de Oceanografia, Spain
2 : Hellenic Center for Marine Research: Elleniko Kentro Thalassion Ereunon, grece
3 : IRBIM CNR: Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerce, Italy
4 : Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries: Institut za Oceanografiju i Ribarstvo, croatia
5 : MARBEC: Centre pour la Biodiversite Marine l'Exploitation et la Conservation, France
6 : CNR-IAS, italy
7 : ICTS SOCIB: Sistema d'observacio i prediccio costaner de les Illes Balear, spain
8 : IEO: Instituto Espanol de Oceanografia, Spain
Source Under consideration for Marine Biology (Research Square Platform LLC) In Press
DOI 10.21203/
Note This is a preprint; it has not been reviewed by a journal

This research represents the first approach to the study of the shelf zooplankton community at a Mediterranean scale, using acoustic standardized data collected in June-July in 10 different geographical sub-areas (GSAs) established by the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM) within the framework of the MEDiterranean International Acoustic Survey (MEDIAS). The analysis of the zooplankton layers based on their acoustic characteristics has revealed the potential of these surveys for the study of zooplankton at a Mediterranean basin scale and, also, the need to collect biological samples to interpret the acoustic records in terms of species. The fish population’s direct assessment is established in the MEDIAS framework, but the integration of zooplankton community data would constitute a qualitative step for the understanding of the fluctuations of fish populations and therefore to achieve the objective of an ecosystem-based management. Results have revealed the ubiquity of the zooplankton layers and its ability to form layers detectable by scientific echosounders throughout the Mediterranean at the common fish assessment frequency (38 kHz). In addition, the use of two frequencies (38 and 120 kHz) has allowed to apply the dB difference method, observing changes in the difference of the Mean Volume Backscattering Strength (∆MVBS) at 38 and 120 kHz frequencies, which would be related to changes in the composition of the zooplankton community.

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Ventero Ana, Iglesias Magdalena, Giannoulaki Marianna, Pyrounaki Maria Myrto, Leonori Iole, de Felice Andrea, Tičina Vjekoslav, Saraux Claire, Genovese Simona, Baeza Josep, Córdoba Pilar, Kapelonis Zacharias, Somarakis Stylianos, Hattab Tarek, Biagiotti Ilaria, Malavolti Sara, Juretić Tea, Bourdeix Jean-Herve, Basilone Gualtiero, Ferreri Rosalia, Aronica Salvatore First description of the shelf epipelagic plankton layers at a Mediterranean basin-scale. Under consideration for Marine Biology IN PRESS. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :