Journal of Oceanography

, Volume 67, Issue 2, pp 159–172 | Cite as

Monsoon-driven succession of the larval fish assemblage in the East China Sea shelf waters off northern Taiwan

  • Hung-Yen Hsieh
  • Wen-Tseng Lo
  • Long-Jing Wu
  • Dong-Chung Liu
  • Wei-Cheng Su
Original Article


The seasonal variation in the larval fish community related to the hydrography in the East China Sea (ECS) off northern Taiwan was studied from February to November 2004. Hydrographic conditions in the southern ECS are strongly influenced by the different water masses due to the seasonal monsoon system. A total of 173 taxa of larval fish belonging to 68 families and 105 genera were identified during the study period. The highest abundance of larval fish was recorded in winter, a moderate abundance was seen in late spring and summer, and the lowest abundance in autumn. Significantly higher abundances were usually found in the mixing zone than in ECS and the Kuroshio Current, and the number of species of larval fish was greater during the warm period than during the cold period. The larval fish fauna in the southern ECS is a mixture of endemic and exotic species; the latter come from the coastal waters of mainland China when the northeasterly monsoon prevails, from the South China Sea during the southwesterly monsoon, and from the Kuroshio waters year-round. The succession of water masses induced by the monsoon systems and the high nutrient levels caused by frontal turbulence and topographic upwelling may determine the distributions of larval fish in terms of abundance and composition.


Community composition Larval fish Monsoon Water masses East China Sea Upwelling 



We are grateful to the captain, officers, and crew of the RV Fishery Researcher I for their skillful assistance in collecting zooplankton samples and other environmental data. Identification of larval fish species was verified by Dr. Y. T. Wang of the Fisheries Research Institute. We are also grateful to Dr. C.-t. Shih for his useful comments and suggestions, which helped to significantly improve the manuscript. This research was supported by grants from the National Science Council and the Ministry of Education of the Republic of China to W.T. Lo [NSC98-2611-M 110-002 and 97C030200 (Kuroshio Project)].


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Copyright information

© The Oceanographic Society of Japan and Springer 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hung-Yen Hsieh
    • 1
  • Wen-Tseng Lo
    • 2
  • Long-Jing Wu
    • 1
  • Dong-Chung Liu
    • 3
  • Wei-Cheng Su
    • 3
  1. 1.Coastal and Offshore Resources Research Center, Fisheries Research Institute of the Council of AgricultureExecutive YuanKaohsiungTaiwan
  2. 2.Institute of Marine Biotechnology and ResourcesNational Sun Yat-sen UniversityKaohsiungTaiwan
  3. 3.Fisheries Research Institute of the Council of AgricultureExecutive YuanKeelungTaiwan

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