Feeding by Euphausia superba and Copepod Species in Response to Varying Concentrations of Phytoplankton

  • S. B. Schnack


The feeding behaviour of dominant copepod species (Calanus propinquus, Calanoides acutus, Rhincalanus gigas, Metridia gerlachei and M. curticauda) and of the Antarctic Krill, Euphausia superba, was studied during 2 cruises in the Atlantic sector of the Southern Ocean. The phytoplankton composition differed markedly between the 2 cruises. In November-December 1980, Thalassiosira spp. dominated close to the ice-edge, whereas Corethron criophilum was predominant in the Drake Passage. In February 1982, the diatoms, C. criophilum, Chaetoceros spp. and Biddulphia spp., as well as μ-flagellates were most abundant. However, all copepod species, as well as Krill, fed efficiently on the most abundant food item and, on both cruises, these animals fed on the same food organisms. However, feeding rates differed between the species; Metridia gerlachei showing higher feeding rates (in terms of food ingested on a weight-specific basis) than the other animals studied.


Copepod Species Centric Diatom Antarctic Krill Phytoplankton Group Euphausia Superba 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. B. Schnack
    • 1
  1. 1.Alfred-Wegener-Institut für PolarforschungColumbus-CenterBremerhavenGermany

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