Functional Seascapes: Understanding the Consequences of Hypoxia and Spatial Patterning in Pelagic Ecosystems
Abstract: With greater nutrient loading and seasonal water column stratification, dissolved oxygen has been declining in many of the world’s coastal areas, and climate warming is likely to exacerbate this problem. Low dissolved oxygen or hypoxia can profoundly affect a fish’s growth, survival and reproductive success, but tolerances to low dissolved oxygen differ across species. The level of hypoxic stress is also dependent on ambient water temperatures and prey availability. A fundamental challenge to fisheries management is to understand how hypoxia affects fish under different environmental conditions. In this paper, we introduce a new approach to assessing the impacts of hypoxia on fish that can be used to compare impacts among species as well as across other physical, biological, and chemical gradients and in response to environmental change.
Authors: Stephen B. Brandt, Sarah E. Kolesar, Cassandra N. Glaspie, Arnaud Laurent, Cynthia E. Sellinger, James J. Pierson,
Michael R. Roman, and William C. Boicourt