Ji Rubao

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  • Preprint
    Interannual differences in larval haddock survival : hypothesis testing with a 3D biophysical model of Georges Bank
    ( 2014-06) Petrik, Colleen M. ; Ji, Rubao ; Davis, Cabell S.
    The ultimate goal of early life studies of fish over the past century has been to better understand recruitment variability. As evident in the Georges Bank haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) population, there is a strong relationship between recruitment success and processes occurring during the planktonic larval stage. This research sought new insights into the mechanisms controlling the recruitment process in fish populations by using biological-physical modeling methods together with laboratory and field data sets. We created the first three-dimensional model of larval haddock on Georges Bank by coupling models of hydrodynamics, lower trophic levels, a single copepod species, and larval haddock. Interactions between feeding, metabolism, growth, vertical behavior, advection, predation, and the physical environment of larval haddock were quantitatively investigated using the coupled models. Particularly, the model was used to compare survival over the larval period and the sources of mortality in 1995 and 1998, two years of disparate haddock recruitment. The results of model simulations suggest that the increased egg hatching rates and higher food availability, which reduced starvation and predation, in 1998 contributed to its larger year-class. Additionally, the inclusion of temperature-dependent predation rates produced model results that better agreed with observations of the mean hatch date of survivors. The results from this biophysical model imply that food-limitation and its related losses to starvation and predation, especially from hatch to 7 mm, may be responsible for interannual variability in recruitment and larval survival outside of the years studied.
  • Article
    Variations in rates of biological production in the Beaufort Gyre as the arctic changes: Rates from 2011 to 2016
    (American Geophysical Union, 2019-04-30) Ji, Brenda Y. ; Sandwith, Zoe O. ; Williams, William J. ; Diaconescu, Oana ; Ji, Rubao ; Li, Yun ; Van Scoy, Emma ; Yamamoto-Kawai, Michiyo ; Zimmermann, Sarah ; Stanley, Rachel H. R.
    The Arctic Ocean is experiencing profound environmental changes as the climate warms. Understanding how these changes will affect Arctic biological productivity is key for predicting future Arctic ecosystems and the global CO2 balance. Here we use in situ gas measurements to quantify rates of gross oxygen production (GOP, total photosynthesis) and net community production (NCP, net CO2 drawdown by the biological pump) in the mixed layer in summer or fall from 2011 to 2016 in the Beaufort Gyre. NCP and GOP show spatial and temporal variations with higher values linked with lower concentrations of sea ice and increased upper ocean stratification. Mean rates of GOP range from 8 ± 1 to 54 ± 9 mmol O2·m−2·d−1 with the highest mean rates occurring in summer of 2012. Mean rates of NCP ranged from 1.3 ± 0.2 to 2.9 ± 0.5 mmol O2·m−2·d−1. The mean ratio of NCP/GOP, a measure of how efficiently the ecosystem is recycling its nutrients, ranged from 0.04 to 0.17, similar to ratios observed at lower latitudes. Additionally, a large increase in total photosynthesis that occurred in 2012, a year of historically low sea ice coverage, persisted for many years. Taken together, these data provide one of the most complete characterizations of interannual variations of biological productivity in this climatically important region, can serve as a baseline for future changes in rates of production, and give an intriguing glimpse of how this region of the Arctic may respond to future lack of sea ice.
  • Article
    Remote climate forcing of decadal-scale regime shifts in Northwest Atlantic shelf ecosystems
    (Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography, 2013-05) Greene, Charles H. ; Meyer-Gutbrod, Erin ; Monger, Bruce C. ; McGarry, Louise P. ; Pershing, Andrew J. ; Belkin, Igor M. ; Fratantoni, Paula S. ; Mountain, David G. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Proshutinsky, Andrey ; Ji, Rubao ; Bisagni, James J. ; Hakkinen, Sirpa M. A. ; Haidvogel, Dale B. ; Wang, Jia ; Head, Erica ; Smith, Peter ; Reid, Philip C. ; Conversi, Alessandra
    Decadal-scale regime shifts in Northwest Atlantic shelf ecosystems can be remotely forced by climate-associated atmosphere–ocean interactions in the North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean Basins. This remote climate forcing is mediated primarily by basin- and hemispheric-scale changes in ocean circulation. We review and synthesize results from process-oriented field studies and retrospective analyses of time-series data to document the linkages between climate, ocean circulation, and ecosystem dynamics. Bottom-up forcing associated with climate plays a prominent role in the dynamics of these ecosystems, comparable in importance to that of top-down forcing associated with commercial fishing. A broad perspective, one encompassing the effects of basin- and hemispheric-scale climate processes on marine ecosystems, will be critical to the sustainable management of marine living resources in the Northwest Atlantic.
  • Article
    Resource allocation for Lagrangian tracking
    (American Meteorological Society, 2016-06-02) Jones, Benjamin T. ; Solow, Andrew R. ; Ji, Rubao
    Accurate estimation of the transport probabilities among regions in the ocean provides valuable information for understanding plankton transport, the spread of pollutants, and the movement of water masses. Individual-based particle-tracking models simulate a large ensemble of Lagrangian particles and are a common method to estimate these transport probabilities. Simulating a large ensemble of Lagrangian particles is computationally expensive, and appropriately allocating resources can reduce the cost of this method. Two universal questions in the design of studies that use Lagrangian particle tracking are how many particles to release and how to distribute particle releases. A method is presented for tailoring the number and the release location of particles to most effectively achieve the objectives of a study. The method detailed here is a sequential analysis procedure that seeks to minimize the number of particles that are required to satisfy a predefined metric of result quality. The study assesses the result quality as the precision of the estimates for the elements of a transport matrix and also describes how the method may be extended for use with other metrics. Applying this methodology to both a theoretical system and a particle transport model of the Gulf of Maine results in more precise estimates of the transport probabilities with fewer particles than from uniformly or randomly distributing particle releases. The application of this method can help reduce the cost of and increase the robustness of results from studies that use Lagrangian particles.
  • Article
    Larval transport pathways from three prominent sand lance habitats in the Gulf of Maine
    (Wiley, 2022-03-15) Suca, Justin J. ; Ji, Rubao ; Baumann, Hannes ; Pham, Kent ; Silva, Tammy L. ; Wiley, David N. ; Feng, Zhixuan ; Llopiz, Joel K.
    Northern sand lance (Ammodytes dubius) are among the most critically important forage fish throughout the Northeast US shelf. Despite their ecological importance, little is known about the larval transport of this species. Here, we use otolith microstructure analysis to estimate hatch and settlement dates of sand lance and then use these measurements to parametrize particle tracking experiments to assess the source–sink dynamics of three prominent sand lance habitats in the Gulf of Maine: Stellwagen Bank, the Great South Channel, and Georges Bank. Our results indicate the pelagic larval duration of northern sand lance lasts about 2 months (range: 50–84 days) and exhibit a broad range of hatch and settlement dates. Forward and backward particle tracking experiments show substantial interannual variability, yet suggest transport generally follows the north to south circulation in the Gulf of Maine region. We find that Stellwagen Bank is a major source of larvae for the Great South Channel, while the Great South Channel primarily serves as a sink for larvae from Stellwagen Bank and Georges Bank. Retention is likely the primary source of larvae on Georges Bank. Retention within both Georges Bank and Stellwagen Bank varies interannually in response to changes in local wind events, while the Great South Channel only exhibited notable retention in a single year. Collectively, these results provide a framework to assess population connectivity among these sand lance habitats, which informs the species' recruitment dynamics and impacts its vulnerability to exploitation.
  • Article
    Early life history and fisheries oceanography : new questions in a changing world
    (The Oceanography Society, 2014-12) Llopiz, Joel K. ; Cowen, Robert K. ; Hauff, Martha J. ; Ji, Rubao ; Munday, Philip L. ; Muhling, Barbara A. ; Peck, Myron A. ; Richardson, David E. ; Sogard, Susan M. ; Sponaugle, Su
    In the past 100 years since the birth of fisheries oceanography, research on the early life history of fishes, particularly the larval stage, has been extensive, and much progress has been made in identifying the mechanisms by which factors such as feeding success, predation, or dispersal can influence larval survival. However, in recent years, the study of fish early life history has undergone a major and, arguably, necessary shift, resulting in a growing body of research aimed at understanding the consequences of climate change and other anthropogenically induced stressors. Here, we review these efforts, focusing on the ways in which fish early life stages are directly and indirectly affected by increasing temperature; increasing CO2 concentrations, and ocean acidification; spatial, temporal, and magnitude changes in secondary production and spawning; and the synergistic effects of fishing and climate change. We highlight how these and other factors affect not only larval survivorship, but also the dispersal of planktonic eggs and larvae, and thus the connectivity and replenishment of fish subpopulations. While much of this work is in its infancy and many consequences are speculative or entirely unknown, new modeling approaches are proving to be insightful by predicting how early life stage survival may change in the future and how such changes will impact economically and ecologically important fish populations.
  • Article
    Timing of Calanus finmarchicus diapause in stochastic environments
    (Elsevier, 2021-09-20) Bandara, Kanchana ; Varpe, Øystein ; Maps, Frédéric ; Ji, Rubao ; Eiane, Ketil ; Tverberg, Vigdis
    In environments with strong seasonality, many herbivorous zooplankton remain active only during the productive season and undergo a period of inactivity and suppressed development termed ‘diapause’ during the unproductive season. The ability to time the diapause entry and exit in response to the seasonality of the environment is thus essential for their survival. However, timing of diapause may become challenging when environmental conditions vary stochastically across shorter and longer timescales, and particularly when zooplankton lack external cues to predict these variations. In this study, we used a novel individual-based model to study the emerging patterns of diapause timing of the high-latitude marine herbivorous copepod Calanus finmarchicus under shorter- (6-h) and longer-term (interannual) environmental stochasticity. The model simulated growth, development, survival and reproduction (income breeding) of a C. finmarchicus population over multiple calendar years and traced the emergence of behavioral responses and life history strategies. The emergent timing of diapause entry and exit were robust to shorter-term environmental stochasticity, which was manifested through morphological (i.e., body and energy reserve sizes) and behavioral plasticity (i.e., diel vertical migration). Longer-term stochastic variations of temperature and food environments altered the timing of diapause entry, which occurred earlier in warmer years with higher growth potential and vice versa. Irrespective of the modelled environmental variability, diapause exit occurred asynchronously throughout the year. This appeared to be a consequence of a diversified bet hedging strategy, where parents spread the starvation mortality risk of ascending to the upper pelagial at food-deprived times of the year among their offspring. This was a potent strategy, particularly in simulations where the timing of the algal bloom varied stochastically between years, since a fraction of the population was present in the upper pelagial year-round and those that coincided with the emergence of the pelagic primary production survived and produced the next generation.
  • Article
    Influence of ocean freshening on shelf phytoplankton dynamics
    (American Geophysical Union, 2007-12-28) Ji, Rubao ; Davis, Cabell S. ; Chen, Changsheng ; Townsend, David W. ; Mountain, David G. ; Beardsley, Robert C.
    Climate change-induced freshening of the ocean can enhance vertical stratification and alter circulation patterns in ways that influence phytoplankton dynamics. We examined the timing of spring phytoplankton blooms and the magnitude of net primary productivity in the Nova Scotian Shelf (NSS) - Gulf of Maine (GoM) region with respect to seasonal and interannual changes in surface water freshening from 1998 to 2006. The general pattern of temporal westward progression of the phytoplankton bloom corresponds with the gradient of increasing sea surface salinity from the NSS in the east to the western GoM. Increased freshening enhances the spatial gradients in bloom timing by stimulating earlier blooms upstream (NSS), but it has less impact downstream (the western GoM). Strong spatial gradients (increasing westward) of mean chlorophyll concentration and net primary productivity during post-bloom months (May–June) indicate that lower sea surface salinity upstream can likely impede nutrient fluxes from deep water and therefore affect overall productivity.
  • Article
    Wind-induced interannual variability of sea level slope, along-shelf flow, and surface salinity on the Northwest Atlantic shelf
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2014-04-16) Li, Yun ; Ji, Rubao ; Fratantoni, Paula S. ; Chen, Changsheng ; Hare, Jonathan A. ; Davis, Cabell S. ; Beardsley, Robert C.
    In this study, we examine the importance of regional wind forcing in modulating advective processes and hydrographic properties along the Northwest Atlantic shelf, with a focus on the Nova Scotian Shelf (NSS)-Gulf of Maine (GoM) region. Long-term observational data of alongshore wind stress, sea level slope, and along-shelf flow are analyzed to quantify the relationship between wind forcing and hydrodynamic responses on interannual time scales. Additionally, a simplified momentum balance model is used to examine the underlying mechanisms. Our results show significant correlation among the observed interannual variability of sea level slope, along-shelf flow, and alongshore wind stress in the NSS-GoM region. A mechanism is suggested to elucidate the role of wind in modulating the sea level slope and along-shelf flow: stronger southwesterly (northeastward) winds tend to weaken the prevailing southwestward flow over the shelf, building sea level in the upstream Newfoundland Shelf region, whereas weaker southwesterly winds allow stronger southwestward flow to develop, raising sea level in the GoM region. The wind-induced flow variability can influence the transport of low-salinity water from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to the GoM, explaining interannual variations in surface salinity distributions within the region. Hence, our results offer a viable mechanism, besides the freshening of remote upstream sources, to explain interannual patterns of freshening in the GoM.
  • Article
    Impact of shifting subpolar front on phytoplankton dynamics in the western margin of East/Japan Sea
    (Frontiers Media, 2021-12-07) Kim, Dongyoung ; Ji, Rubao ; Park, Hyun Je ; Feng, Zhixuan ; Jang, Jaebin ; Lee, Chung l ; Kang, Yun-Ho ; Kang, Chang-Keun
    A subpolar front (SPF) generated between the East Korea Warm Current (EKWC) and the North Korea Cold Current (NKCC) in the western margin of the East/Japan Sea has shifted northward in recent decades. This study investigated the biomass and composition of the phytoplankton assemblage in relation to hydrological and biogeochemical features in the shallow shelf and slope off the Korean coast from January to June in 2016 and 2017, to determine the mechanistic effects of SPF on spring–summer phytoplankton bloom dynamics. Monthly average depth-integrated chlorophyll a (Chl a) levels and the contribution of phytoplankton classes revealed bimodal diatom blooms in early spring and summer in the frontal zone. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that the distribution of high Chl a was associated with cold, low-salinity NKCC water in March 2016. No Chl a peak was observed in March 2017 when the warm saline EKWC water mass invaded. These results suggest that the NKCC intrusion acts as a forcing mechanism leading to enhanced phytoplankton biomass in the frontal zone. In contrast, positive correlations of Chl a concentration with water density and nutrient concentrations suggest that summer blooms were fed by the subsurface chlorophyll maximum (SCM) driven by shoaling of the pycnocline and nitracline. Varying water-column stratification determined the thickness of the SCM layer, driving year-to-year variability in the magnitude of diatom blooms. These findings further suggest that seasonal/interannual variability in the timing of algal blooms affects regional trophodynamics and hence could be an important factor in explaining ecosystem changes in this region.
  • Article
    Surface chlorophyll anomalies induced by mesoscale eddy-wind interactions in the northern Norwegian Sea
    (Frontiers Media, 2022-09-29) Dong, Huizi ; Zhou, Meng ; Raj, Roshin P. ; Smith, Walker O. ; Basedow, Sünnje L. ; Ji, Rubao ; Ashjian, Carin ; Zhang, Zhaoru ; Hu, Ziyuan
    The substantial productivity of the northern Norwegian Sea is closely related to its strong mesoscale eddy activity, but how eddies affect phytoplankton biomass levels in the upper ocean through horizontal and vertical transport-mixing has not been well quantified. To assess mesoscale eddy induced ocean surface chlorophyll-a concentration (CHL) anomalies and modulation of eddy-wind interactions in the region, we constructed composite averaged CHL and wind anomalies from 3,841 snapshots of anticyclonic eddies (ACEs) and 2,727 snapshots of cyclonic eddies (CEs) over the period 2000-2020 using satellite altimetry, scatterometry, and ocean color products. Results indicate that eddy pumping induces negative (positive) CHL anomalies within ACEs (CEs), while Ekman pumping caused by wind-eddy interactions induces positive (negative) CHL anomalies within ACEs (CEs). Eddy-induced Ekman upwelling plays a key role in the unusual positive CHL anomalies within the ACEs and results in the vertical transport of nutrients that stimulates phytoplankton growth and elevated productivity of the region. Seasonal shoaling of the mixed layer depth (MLD) results in greater irradiance levels available for phytoplankton growth, thereby promoting spring blooms, which in combination with strong eddy activity leads to large CHL anomalies in May and June. The combined processes of wind-eddy interactions and seasonal shallowing of MLD play a key role in generating surface CHL anomalies and is a major factor in the regulation of phytoplankton biomass in the northern Norwegian Sea.
  • Article
    Environmental drivers and trends in forage fish occupancy of the Northeast US shelf
    (Oxford University Press, 2021-11-02) Suca, Justin J. ; Deroba, Jonathan J. ; Richardson, David E. ; Ji, Rubao ; Llopiz, Joel K.
    The Northeast US shelf ecosystem is undergoing unprecedented changes due to long-term warming trends and shifts in regional hydrography leading to changes in community composition. However, it remains uncertain how shelf occupancy by the region's dominant, offshore small pelagic fishes, also known as forage fishes, has changed throughout the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Here, we use species distribution models to estimate the change in shelf occupancy, mean weighted latitude, and mean weighted depth of six forage fishes on the Northeast US shelf, and whether those trends were linked to coincident hydrographic conditions. Our results suggest that observed shelf occupancy is increasing or unchanging for most species in both spring and fall, linked both to gear shifts and increasing bottom temperature and salinity. Exceptions include decreases to observed shelf occupancy by sand lance and decreases to Atlantic herring's inferred habitat suitability in the fall. Our work shows that changes in shelf occupancy and inferred habitat suitability have varying coherence, indicating complex mechanisms behind observed shelf occupancy for many species. Future work and management can use these results to better isolate the aspects of forage fish life histories that are important for determining their occupancy of the Northeast US shelf.
  • Article
    Dynamic fine-scale sea icescape shapes adult emperor penguin foraging habitat in east Antarctica
    (American Geophysical Union, 2019-09-16) Labrousse, Sara ; Fraser, Alexander D. ; Sumner, Michael ; Tamura, Takeshi ; Pinaud, David ; Wienecke, Barbara ; Kirkwood, Roger ; Ropert-Coudert, Yan ; Reisinger, Ryan ; Jonsen, Ian ; Porter‐Smith, Rick ; Barbraud, Christophe ; Bost, Charles-Andre ; Ji, Rubao ; Jenouvrier, Stephanie
    The emperor penguin, an iconic species threatened by projected sea ice loss in Antarctica, has long been considered to forage at the fast ice edge, presumably relying on large/yearly persistent polynyas as their main foraging habitat during the breeding season. Using newly developed fine‐scale sea icescape data and historical penguin tracking data, this study for the first time suggests the importance of less recognized small openings, including cracks, flaw leads and ephemeral short‐term polynyas, as foraging habitats for emperor penguins. The tracking data retrieved from 47 emperor penguins in two different colonies in East Antarctica suggest that those penguins spent 23% of their time in ephemeral polynyas and did not use the large/yearly persistent, well‐studied polynyas, even if they occur much more regularly with predictable locations. These findings challenge our previous understanding of emperor penguin breeding habitats, highlighting the need for incorporating fine‐scale seascape features when assessing the population persistence in a rapidly changing polar environment.
  • Article
    Vertical migration of dinoflagellates : model analysis of strategies, growth, and vertical distribution patterns
    (Inter-Research, 2007-08-23) Ji, Rubao ; Franks, Peter J. S.
    Dinoflagellates demonstrate a variety of vertical migration patterns that presumably give them a competitive advantage when nutrients are depleted in the surface layer of stratified waters. In this study, a simple quota-based model was used to examine the relationships between the vertical migration pattern and internal nutritional status, and to assess how external environmental conditions, such as mixing layer depth (MLD) and internal waves, can influence these relationships. Dinoflagellates may form subsurface aggregations or conduct vertical migration (diel or non-diel) in response to their internal nutrient quota, but within a limited physiological parameter space. The model was implemented in a 1D (vertical) domain using an individual-based modeling approach, tracking the change in nutrient quota and the trajectory of many individual cells in a water column. The model shows that dinoflagellate cells might change from one vertical migration pattern to another when the external environmental conditions change. Using the average net growth rate as an index of fitness, 2 migration strategies, photo-/geotaxis vs. quota-based migration, were assessed with regard to MLD and internal wave regime. It was found that dinoflagellates might choose different migration strategies under different mixing/stratification regimes. In addition, under the same environmental conditions, different species might display unique vertical migration patterns due to inherent physiological differences. This study reveals the sensitivity of dinoflagellate vertical migration to biological and physical factors and offers possible explanations for the various vertical distributions and migration patterns observed in the field.
  • Preprint
    Responses of summer phytoplankton biomass to changes in top-down forcing : insights from comparative modelling
    ( 2018-03) Maar, Marie ; Butenschön, Momme ; Daewel, Ute ; Eggert, Anja ; Fan, Wei ; Hjøllo, Solfrid S. ; Hufnagl, Marc ; Huret, Martin ; Ji, Rubao ; Lacroix, Geneviève ; Peck, Myron A. ; Radtke, Hagen ; Sailley, Sevrine F. ; Sinerchia, Matteo ; Skogen, Morten D. ; Travers-Trolet, Morgane ; Troost, Tineke A. ; van de Wolfshaar, Karen
    The present study describes the responses of summer phytoplankton biomass to changes in top-down forcing (expressed as zooplankton mortality) in three ecosystems (the North Sea, the Baltic Sea and the Nordic Seas) across different 3D ecosystem models. In each of the model set-ups, we applied the same changes in the magnitude of mortality (±20%) of the highest trophic zooplankton level (Z1). Model results showed overall dampened responses of phytoplankton relative to Z1 biomass. Phytoplankton responses varied depending on the food web structure and trophic coupling represented in the models. Hence, a priori model assumptions were found to influence cascades and pathways in model estimates and, thus, become highly relevant when examining ecosystem pressures such as fishing and climate change. Especially, the different roles and parameterizations of additional zooplankton groups grazed by Z1, and their importance for the outcome, emphasized the need for better calibration data. Spatial variability was high within each model indicating that physics (hydrodynamics and temperature) and nutrient dynamics also play vital roles for ecosystem responses to top-down effects. In conclusion, the model comparison indicated that changes in top-down forcing in combination with the modelled food-web structure affect summer phytoplankton biomass and, thereby, indirectly influence water quality of the systems.
  • Article
    Ecosystem model intercomparison of under-ice and total primary production in the Arctic Ocean
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2016-01-27) Jin, Meibing ; Popova, Ekaterina E. ; Zhang, Jinlun ; Ji, Rubao ; Pendleton, Daniel ; Varpe, Øystein ; Yool, Andrew ; Lee, Younjoo J.
    Previous observational studies have found increasing primary production (PP) in response to declining sea ice cover in the Arctic Ocean. In this study, under-ice PP was assessed based on three coupled ice-ocean-ecosystem models participating in the Forum for Arctic Modeling and Observational Synthesis (FAMOS) project. All models showed good agreement with under-ice measurements of surface chlorophyll-a concentration and vertically integrated PP rates during the main under-ice production period, from mid-May to September. Further, modeled 30-year (1980–2009) mean values and spatial patterns of sea ice concentration compared well with remote sensing data. Under-ice PP was higher in the Arctic shelf seas than in the Arctic Basin, but ratios of under-ice PP over total PP were spatially correlated with annual mean sea ice concentration, with higher ratios in higher ice concentration regions. Decreases in sea ice from 1980 to 2009 were correlated significantly with increases in total PP and decreases in the under-ice PP/total PP ratio for most of the Arctic, but nonsignificantly related to under-ice PP, especially in marginal ice zones. Total PP within the Arctic Circle increased at an annual rate of between 3.2 and 8.0 Tg C/yr from 1980 to 2009. This increase in total PP was due mainly to a PP increase in open water, including increases in both open water area and PP rate per unit area, and therefore much stronger than the changes in under-ice PP. All models suggested that, on a pan-Arctic scale, the fraction of under-ice PP declined with declining sea ice cover over the last three decades.
  • Preprint
    Biogeographic responses of the copepod Calanus glacialis to a changing Arctic marine environment
    ( 2017-08-24) Feng, Zhixuan ; Ji, Rubao ; Ashjian, Carin J. ; Campbell, Robert G. ; Zhang, Jinlun
    Dramatic changes have occurred in the Arctic Ocean over the past few decades, especially in terms of sea ice loss and ocean warming. Those environmental changes may modify the planktonic ecosystem with changes from lower to upper trophic levels. This study aimed to understand how the biogeographic distribution of a crucial endemic copepod species, Calanus glacialis, may respond to both abiotic (ocean temperature) and biotic (phytoplankton prey) drivers. A copepod individual-based model coupled to an ice-ocean-biogeochemical model was utilized to simulate temperature- and food-dependent life cycle development of C. glacialis annually from 1980 to 2014. Over the 35-year study period, the northern boundaries of modeled diapausing C. glacialis expanded poleward and the annual success rates of C. glacialis individuals attaining diapause in a circumpolar transition zone increased substantially. Those patterns could be explained by a lengthening growth season (during which time food is ample) and shortening critical development time (the period from the first feeding stage N3 to the diapausing stage C4). The biogeographic changes were further linked to large scale oceanic processes, particularly diminishing sea ice cover, upper ocean warming, and increasing and prolonging food availability, which could have potential consequences to the entire Arctic shelf/slope marine ecosystems.
  • Article
    The interactive effects of temperature and food consumption on growth of larval Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida): a bioenergetic model
    (University of California Press, 2022-02-10) David, Carmen L. ; Ji, Rubao ; Bouchard, Caroline ; Hop, Haakon ; Hutchings, Jeffrey A.
    Understanding larval growth, mediated by the interaction of early life traits and environmental conditions, is crucial to elucidate population dynamics. We used a bioenergetic model as an integrative tool to simulate the growth of Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) larvae and to test the sensitivity of modeled growth to temperature and food quantity and quality. The growth was computed as the energy gained through food consumption minus the energy lost through respiration and other metabolic processes. We extended a previously published bioenergetic model to cover the full range of larval length and used a simplified feeding module. This simplification allowed us to build a predictive tool that can be applied to larval Arctic cod at a large spatial scale. Our model suggested that with subzero temperatures in the High Arctic, larvae need to increase food consumption in order to reach the observed length-at-age in late summer. The modeled growth agreed well with the field observations in the High Arctic but was 2–3 times higher than the laboratory-derived growth rate, probably due to differences in food type and selective mortality. Our study reveals important knowledge gaps in our understanding of larval cod growth in the High Arctic, including the lack of empirical estimations of daily ration and respiration for larvae under the natural habitat temperatures.
  • Article
    Marine plankton phenology and life history in a changing climate : current research and future directions
    (Oxford University Press, 2010-06-07) Ji, Rubao ; Edwards, Martin ; Mackas, David L. ; Runge, Jeffrey A. ; Thomas, Andrew C.
    Increasing availability and extent of biological ocean time series (from both in situ and satellite data) have helped reveal significant phenological variability of marine plankton. The extent to which the range of this variability is modified as a result of climate change is of obvious importance. Here we summarize recent research results on phenology of both phytoplankton and zooplankton. We suggest directions to better quantify and monitor future plankton phenology shifts, including (i) examining the main mode of expected future changes (ecological shifts in timing and spatial distribution to accommodate fixed environmental niches vs. evolutionary adaptation of timing controls to maintain fixed biogeography and seasonality), (ii) broader understanding of phenology at the species and community level (e.g. for zooplankton beyond Calanus and for phytoplankton beyond chlorophyll), (iii) improving and diversifying statistical metrics for indexing timing and trophic synchrony and (iv) improved consideration of spatio-temporal scales and the Lagrangian nature of plankton assemblages to separate time from space changes.
  • Article
    Remote silicate supply regulates spring phytoplankton bloom magnitude in the Gulf of Maine
    (Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO), 2022-02-24) Zang, Zhengchen ; Ji, Rubao ; Liu, Zongguang ; Chen, Changsheng ; Li, Yun ; Li, Siqi ; Davis, Cabell S.
    Spring phytoplankton blooms in the Gulf of Maine (GoM) are sensitive to climate-related local and remote forcing. Nutrient supply through the slope water intrusion has been viewed as critical in regulating the GoM spring blooms, with an assumption that nitrogen is the primary limiting nutrient. In recent years, this paradigm has been challenged, with silicate being recognized as another potential limiting nutrient, but the source of silicate and its associated water mass remain difficult to be determined. In this study, a time series of spring bloom magnitude was constructed using a self-organizing map algorithm, and then correlated with the fluctuation of water composition in the deep Northeast Channel. The results reveal the importance of silicate supply from previously less-recognized deep Scotian Shelf Water inflow. This study offers a new hypothesis for spring bloom regulation, providing a better understanding of mechanisms controlling the spring bloom magnitude in the GoM.