Emergence patterns of small subtidal arthropods in relation to day/night, tidal, and surface/bottom factors: Investigations in the Boreal sea, Japan (Akkeshi, Hokkaido)

Masayuki Saigusa, Kazushi Oishi, Akihiro Ikumoto, Hiroshi Iwasaki, Michihiro Terajima

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The emergence of small arthropods was studied in the boreal sea, Japan (Akkeshi, Hokkaido). In the shallow subtidal zone, two impeller pumps were set in the surface and bottom waters. The pumps ran continuously for 25 days (22 August-16 September, 1998), and invertebrates were sampled using a nylon net (300 to 500 μm in mesh size). The small arthropods collected with the net belonged to 16 orders comprising about 60 taxa. In the dominant 23 taxa, a two-way ANOVA was applied to determine whether there was any significant difference in abundance between day and night and between surface and bottom. While emergence of 15 taxa (65%) was significantly different with regard to the day/night factor, that of the other 8 taxa (35%) was not. As to the difference between the two depths, the distribution of 15 taxa (65%) was significantly different. Furthermore, in 25 taxa for which over 100 specimens were collected in each of the two depths of water, emergence patterns were examined with regard to the synchrony with day/night and tidal cycles. There were various nocturnal patterns, and the strength of the synchrony with the day/night cycle was different for each species or group. Within the same taxa, nocturnal patterns were more clearly manifested in the surface water than in the bottom water. A tidal rhythm of emergence was only seen in zoeas of shrimp. Variations of the emergence patterns of benthic crustaceans are accounted for by a hypothesis that the frequency of swimming during day versus at night is different in each species. On the other hand, the emergence patterns of some zooplankton reflect by the daily rhythm of vertical migration or dispersal in the water column.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-310
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Oceanography
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2000



  • Daily (=diel) rhythm
  • Day/night
  • Dispersal
  • Emergence pattern
  • Hokkaido (Akkeshi)
  • Small arthropods
  • Surface/bottom
  • Swimming activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography

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