Journal of Oceanology and Limnology

, Volume 36, Issue 3, pp 805–817 | Cite as

Changes in fish diversity and community structure in the central and southern Yellow Sea from 2003 to 2015

  • Yunlong Chen (陈云龙)
  • Xiujuan Shan (单秀娟)Email author
  • Xianshi Jin (金显仕)
  • Arne Johannessen
  • Tao Yang (杨涛)
  • Fangqun Dai (戴芳群)


The central and southern Yellow Sea is an important overwintering ground for many fish species in the Bohai Sea and Yellow Sea. For better understanding the status of the fish community after years of heavy exploitation, variations in fish community structure and diversity were analyzed using data from bottom trawls during 2003–2015. Five fish assemblage indices all showed fluctuations without clear trends from 2003 to 2015, yet there were strong positive and significant correlations ( P < 0.05) among them. The top-five dominant species accounted for a high weight percentage (49.7%–82.1%) in the annual fish catch. Multivariate analysis showed that two year groups could be pooled for the fish community: Group I consisted of the years 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2015, while Group II consisted of the years 2003, 2004, 2005, 2009, 2010 and 2014; the groups aggregated with 63.71% similarity, indicating a high level of similarity among all years. The multivariate dispersion values were 1.455 and 0.818 for Groups I and II, respectively, indicating greater variances in fish assemblage structure in Group I than that in Group II. Similarity of percentage analysis demonstrated that the average similarities for Group I and Group II were 71.58% and 67.51%, respectively. Size-spectra analysis revealed no consistent trend in the intercept and slope ( P > 0.05); there were also no significant differences between the slope of the size-spectra and fishing effort. The catch per unit effort and mean individual weight analyses of the whole fish assemblage both showed a significantly decreasing trend over time. Overall, the results showed that the fish community structure in the central and southern Yellow Sea was relatively stable from 2003 to 2015 and the study could be used as a reference for supporting ecosystem-based fishery management.


dominant species fish community structure multivariate analysis trawl data 


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Copyright information

© Chinese Society for Oceanology and Limnology, Science Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yunlong Chen (陈云龙)
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  • Xiujuan Shan (单秀娟)
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Xianshi Jin (金显仕)
    • 2
    • 3
  • Arne Johannessen
    • 5
  • Tao Yang (杨涛)
    • 3
  • Fangqun Dai (戴芳群)
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute of OceanologyChinese Academy of SciencesQingdaoChina
  2. 2.Function Laboratory for Marine Fisheries Science and Food Production ProcessesQingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and TechnologyQingdaoChina
  3. 3.Key Laboratory of Sustainable Development of Marine Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture, Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Fishery Resources and Ecological Environment, Yellow Sea Fisheries Research InstituteChinese Academy of Fishery SciencesQingdaoChina
  4. 4.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  5. 5.Department of BiologyUniversity of BergenBergenNorway

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