Journal of Oceanography

, Volume 62, Issue 5, pp 607–615 | Cite as

Abundance and biomass of scyphomedusae, Aurelia aurita and Chrysaora melanaster, and Ctenophora, Bolinopsis mikado, with estimates of their feeding impact on zooplankton in Tokyo Bay, Japan

  • Junji Kinoshita
  • Juro Hiromi
  • Yoshiaki Yamada
Original Articles


The abundance of a scyphomedusae, Aurelia aurita and Chrysaora melanaster, and a ctenophore, Bolinopsis mikado, in Tokyo Bay was investigated from 1995 to 1997. Aurelia aurita appeared throughout the year with a peak in abundance occurring from spring to summer. The average abundance and biomass during this period for the three successive years was 4.8, 43.8 and 3.2 ind. m−2, and 1.02, 10.0 and 0.42 gC m−2, respectively. The values in 1995 and 1997 were comparable with those previously reported for A. aurita abundance from 1990 to 1992. Values were very high in 1996, but the size composition of the bell diameter did not differ from other years, which suggested the absence of food limitation for A. aurita in 1996. C. melanaster was scarce over the survey period (<1.0 ind. m−2) while Bolinopsis mikado was more abundant during September to December, with maximum values of 172 ind. m−2 and 0.33 gC m−2 observed in December 1997. The weight-specific clearance rate for A. aurita on zooplankton (mainly copepods and their nauplii) was 0.16 ± 0.05 lgWW−1 h−1 (n = 13). Population clearance rate peaked from spring to summer, with average levels of 14.2%, 162% and 5.0% day−1 obtained from spring to summer for respective years. Population clearance rates for B. mikado, calculated based on minimum carbon requirements, was 7.1% day−1 in December 1997. Consequently, the trophic role of gelatinous zooplankton as predators in Tokyo Bay is important all the year round, considering the high impact of A. aurita from spring to summer and B. mikado from autumn to winter.


Aurelia aurita Bolinopsis mikado abundance feeding impact Tokyo Bay 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Anakubo, T. and M. Murano (1991): Seasonal variation of zooplankton in Tokyo Bay. J. Tokyo Univ. Fish., 78, 145–165 (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  2. Arai, M. N. (2001): Pelagic coelenterates and eutrophication: a review. Hydrobiol., 451, 69–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aruga, Y. (1997): Phytoplankton in Tokyo Bay. Aquabiology, 109, 103–108 (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  4. Behrends, G. and G. Schneider (1995): Impact of Aurelia aurita medusae (Cnidaria, Scyphozoa) on the standing stock and community composition of mesozooplankton in the Kiel Bight (western Baltic Sea). Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser., 127, 39–45.Google Scholar
  5. Bologa, A. S., N. Bodeanu, A. Petran, V. Tiganus and Yu. P. Zaitsev (1995): Major modifications of the Black Sea benthic and planktonic biota in the last three decades. Bull. Inst. Ocean. (Monaco) Special, 15, 85–110.Google Scholar
  6. Fancett, M. S. and G. P. Jenkins (1988): Predatory impact of scyphomedusae on ichthyoplankton and other zooplankton in Port Phillip Bay. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol., 116, 63–77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Frost, B. W. (1972): Effects of size and concentration of food particles on the feeding behavior of the marine planktonic copepod Calanus pacificus. Limnol. Oceanogr., 17, 805–815.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Garcia, J. R. and E. Durbin (1993): Zooplanktivorous predation by large scyphomedusae Phyllorhiza punctata (Cidaria: Scyphozoa) in Laguna Joyuda. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol., 173, 71–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Hiromi, J. (1996): Potential impact of grazing by Oithona davisae (Copepoda: Cyclopoida) in Tokyo Bay, Summer 1989. Bull. Coll. Agr. and Vet. Med., Nihon Univ., 53, 47–55.Google Scholar
  10. Kasuya, T., T. Ishimaru and M. Murano (1994): Feeding characteristics of the lobate ctenophore Bolinopsis mikado (Moser). Bull. Plankton Soc. Japan, 41, 57–68.Google Scholar
  11. Kasuya, T., T. Ishimaru and M. Murano (2000): Seasonal variations in abundance and size composition of the Lobate ctenophore Bolinopsis mikado (Moser) in Tokyo Bay, Central Japan. J. Oceanogr., 56, 419–427.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kinoshita, J., J. Hiromi and S. Kadota (1997): Do respiratory metabolic rates of the scyphomedusa Aurelia aurita scale isometrically throughout ontogeny in a sexual generation? Hydrobiol., 347, 51–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kinoshita, J., J. Hiromi and Y. Nakamura (2000): Feeding of the scyphomedusa Cyanea nozakii on mesozooplankton. Plankton Biol. Ecol., 47, 43–47.Google Scholar
  14. Kuwabara, R., S. Sato and N. Noguchi (1969): Ecological studies on the medusa, Aurelia aurita Lamarck—I. Distribution of Aurelia patches in the north-east region of Tokyo Bay in summer 1966 and 1967. Bull. Japan. Soc. Sci. Fish., 35, 156–162 (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  15. Larson, R. J. (1987): Respiration and carbon turnover rates of Medusae from the NE Pacific. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. Part A, 87, 93–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lindahl, O. and L. Hernroth (1983): Phyto-zooplankton community in coastal waters of Western Sweden—an ecosystem off balance? Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser., 10, 119–126.Google Scholar
  17. Mitani, I. and N. Nakata (1988): Foundation and verification of forecasting on the description and abundance of sardine and anchovy off Kanagawa Prefecture-IV—Estimation of larval Japanese anchovy in summer—. Bull. Kanagawa Pref. Fish. Exp. Stn., 9, 35–46 (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  18. Möller, H. (1980): Scyphomedusae as a predators and food competitors of larval fish. Meeresforsch, 27, 90–100.Google Scholar
  19. Möller, H. (1984): Reduction of larval herring population by jellyfish predator. Science, 224, 621–622.Google Scholar
  20. Mutlu, E., F. Bingel, A. C. Gücü, V. V. Melnikov, U. Niermann, N. A. Ostr and V. E. Zaika (1994): Distribution of the new invader Mnemiopsis sp. and the resident Aurelia aurita and Pleurobrachia pileus populations in the Black Sea in the years 1991–1993. ICES J. mar. Sci., 51, 407–421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Nomura, H. and T. Ishimaru (1998): Monitoring the occurrence of medusae and ctenophores in Tokyo Bay, central Japan, in recent 15 years. Umi no Kenkyu, 7, 99–104 (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  22. Olesen, N. J. (1995): Clearance potential of jellyfish Aurelia aurita, and predation impact on zooplankton in a shallow cove. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser., 124, 63–72.Google Scholar
  23. Olsson, P., E. Graneli, P. Carlsson and P. Abreu (1992): Structuring of a postspring phytoplankton community by manipulation of trophic interactions. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol., 158, 249–266.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Omori, M., H. Ishii and A. Fujinaga (1995): Life history strategy of Aurelia aurita (Cnidaria, Scyphomedusae) and its impact on the zooplankton community of Tokyo Bay. ICES J. mar. Sci., 52, 597–603.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Purcell, J. E. (1991): A review of cnidarians and ctenophores feeding on competitors in the plankton. Hydrobiol., 216/217, 335–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Purcell, J. E. (1992): Effects of predation by the scyphomedusan Chrysaora quinquecirrha on zooplankton populations in Chesapeake Bay, USA. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser., 87, 65–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Sato, R., J. Hiromi and S. Kadota (1996): Interspecific relation between Jellyfishes: Laboratory observations of predation by the scyphomedusa Chrysaora pacifica upon Aurelia aurita. Bull. Coll. Agr. and Vet. Med., Nihon Univ., 53, 65–71 (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  28. Schneider, G. and G. Behrends (1994): Population dynamics and the trophic role of Aurelia aurita medusae in the Kiel Bight and western Baltic. ICES J. Sci., 51, 359–367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Siegel, S. and N. J. Castellan, Jr. (1988): Nonparametric Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences. 2nd ed., McGraw-Hill, Yew York, 399 pp.Google Scholar
  30. Toyokawa, M., T. Furota and M. Terazaki (2000): Life history and seasonal abundance of Aurelia aurita mudesae in Tokyo Bay, Japan. Plankton Biol. Ecol., 47, 48–58.Google Scholar
  31. Uye, S. (1982): Length-weight relationship of important zooplankton from the Inland Sea of Japan. J. Oceanogr. Soc. Japan, 38, 149–158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Uye, S. and T. Kasuya (1999): Functional roles of ctenophores in the marine coastal ecosystem. p. 57–76. In Update Progress in Aquatic Invertebrate Zoology, ed. by T. Okutani, S. Ohta and R. Ueshima, Tokai University Press, Tokyo (in Japanese with English abstract).Google Scholar
  33. Uye, S. and H. Shimauchi (2005): Population biomass, feeding, respiration and growth rates, and carbon budget of the scyphomedusa Aurelia aurita in the Inland Sea of Japan. J. Plankton Res., 27, 237–248.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Uye, S., N. Fujii and H. Takeoka (2003): Unusual aggregations of the scyphomedusa Aurelia aurita in coastal waters along western Shikoku, Japan. Plankton Biol. Ecol., 50, 7–21.Google Scholar
  35. Yamaguchi, Y. (1993): Algae in Tokyo Bay. p. 61–77. In Tokyo Bay—Its Environmental Changes, ed. by N. Ogura, Koseishakoseikaku, Tokyo (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  36. Yamaguchi, Y. and Y. Shibata (1979): Recent status of primary production in Tokyo Bay. Bull. Coast. Oceanogr., 16, 106–111 (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  37. Zaitsev, Yu. P. (1992): Recent changes in the trophic structure of the Black Sea. Fish. Oceanogr., 1, 180–189.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Oceanographic Society of Japan/TERRAPUB/Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Bioresource SciencesNihon UniversityKameino, FujisawaJapan
  2. 2.Kanagawa Prefectural Fisheries Research CenterMisakicho-jogashima, MiuraJapan

Personalised recommendations