Spring zooplankton distribution in the Bay of Biscay from 1998 to 2006 in relation with anchovy recruitment

Xabier Irigoien*, Jose Antonio Fernandes, Philippe Grosjean, Kevin Denis, Aitor Albaina, Maria Santos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to investigate whether successive recruitment failures in the anchovy fishery in the Bay of Biscay were due to changes in the zooplankton biomass or composition. Image analysis and automatic recognition were used to analyse zooplankton samples collected during diel egg production method spring surveys from 1998 to 2006. We were not able to detect any trend in zooplankton biomass during this period. The zooplankton spatial distribution showed permanent features with large organisms being more abundant over the shelf break and outer areas. Finally, we found a negative correlation between anchovy recruitment and zooplankton biomass which suggests that the 2002-2006 failures in anchovy recruitment in the Bay of Biscay are not due to a decrease in mesozooplankton biomass.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Plankton Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of the Basque Country Government through the Bioman and Ecoanchoa projects as well as by the Ministry of Education of Spain through the project EIPZI. J. Fernandes is supported by a doctoral fellowship from the Fundación Centros Tecnológicos Iñaki Goenaga. P.G. and K.D. work is partly supported by funds from Belgian Sciences Policy, SSD program no. SD/NS/03A (AMORE III).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology


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