Energy and Food Requirements of Pelagic Aerial Seabirds in Different Regions of the African Sector of the Southern Ocean

  • R. W. Abrams


The African sector of the Southern Ocean includes 3 regions separated by oceanic fronts. The frontal areas between the sub-tropical, sub-Antarctic and Antarctic regions are characterized by relatively high nutrient and biotic production levels. In addition, the Benguela upwelling system over the southwestern African continental shelf is especially productive. Daily Energy Expenditures (DEE) of seabirds capable of flight were compared to see whether differences in primary productivity between different areas at sea are reflected at higher trophic levels. Theoretical carbon flux to seabirds at sea during 1979–1981 was calculated to be between 0.040g C m2 yr−1 and 0.224 g C m2 yr−1. The greatest C flux to seabirds occurred in the sub-tropical, and in certain frontal, areas.


Southern Ocean Drake Passage Daily Energy Expenditure Antarctic Polar Front Polar Frontal Zone 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. W. Abrams
    • 1
  1. 1.FitzPatrick InstituteUniversity of Cape TownRondeboschSouth Africa

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