Journal of Ocean University of China

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 232–238 | Cite as

High Individual Variability in Beak Stable Isotopes of Jumbo Squid off Peruvian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Waters in the Analysis of Migratory and Foraging Ecology

  • Bilin Liu
  • Yue Jin
  • Xinjun Chen
  • Jianhua Li
  • Weiguo QianEmail author
  • Na Liu
  • Mengyao Huan


Stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N) have been widely used to track cephalopod habitat, migration and trophic structure. In this study, we analyzed the δ13C and δ15N values in 245 Dosidicus gigas beaks collected during 2009–2010 and in 2013 off Peruvian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) waters. High individual variation in beak stable isotopes was shown with values ranging from −19.4‰ to −15.8‰ for δ13C and from 5.0‰ to 15.1‰ for δ15N. A generalized additive model (GAM) showed that latitude, mantle length and distance to shelf break significantly described the isotope variation with deviance ranging from 16.6% in δ13C to 36.3% in δ15N. Large variability in beak δ13C values for a given size and sampling station indicated that D. gigas off the Peruvian EEZ waters migrate in different ways when they occupy a large range of habitats for their ontogeny. Low baseline δ15N values suggested that spatial changes in diet trophic level may be the main determinative factor in beak δ15N variation. We conclude that high variability in beak δ15N values for a given set of explanatory variables indicated that D. gigas is an opportunistic predator with highly diverse dietary habitats. This study further develops our knowledge of the life history of D. gigas in such a highly dynamic region.

Key words

isotopes variability trophic level Beak Dosidicus gigas Peru GAM 


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Special thanks to the anonymous reviewers for helpful comments on the manuscript. We thank Mrs. Chunxia Gao for the measurement of isotope values and Dr. Christopher J. Somes for sharing baseline isotope data. We thank Dr. Pauline H. Lovell and anonymous English experts, for editing the English text of a draft of this manuscript. This work was sponsored by the Shanghai Pujiang Program (No. 18PJ1404100) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 41306127 and 41276156).


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Copyright information

© Science Press, Ocean University of China and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bilin Liu
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
    • 5
  • Yue Jin
    • 1
  • Xinjun Chen
    • 1
  • Jianhua Li
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Weiguo Qian
    • 1
    • 4
    • 5
    Email author
  • Na Liu
    • 1
  • Mengyao Huan
    • 1
  1. 1.College of Marine SciencesShanghai Ocean UniversityShanghaiChina
  2. 2.National Engineering Research Center for Oceanic FisheriesShanghaiChina
  3. 3.The Key Laboratory of Sustainable Exploitation of Oceanic Fisheries ResourcesMinistry of EducationShanghaiChina
  4. 4.Key Laboratory of Oceanic Fisheries ExplorationMinistry of AgricultureShanghaiChina
  5. 5.Scientific Observing and Experimental Station of Oceanic Fishery ResourcesMinistry of AgricultureShanghaiChina

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