Distribution of Rhincalanus nasutus Giesbrecht 1888 (Calanoida, Copepoda) During the Eastern Sulu Sea Coastal Upwelling Season
Ephrime B. Metillo1, Cristy S. Acabado2, Wilfredo L. Campos3, and Shuhei Nishida4
1Department of Biological Sciences, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, Iligan City 9200, Philippines
2Institute of Marine Fisheries and Oceanology, College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, University of the Philippines Visayas, Miag-ao, Iloilo 5023, Philippines
3OceanBio Laboratory, College of Arts and Sciences,University of the Philippines Visayas, Miag-ao, IloIlo 5023, Philippines
4Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo,
5-1-5 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa 277-8564, Japan
The distributional pattern of a large sized copepod, Rhincalanus nasutus, was investigated in Sindangan Bay and Dipolog Bay during a northeast monsoon-driven seasonal upwelling off the Northeast coast of the Zamboanga Peninsula, Eastern Sulu Sea. Three depth strata (0-65 m, 65-135 m, 135-200 m) at 10 stations were sampled for zooplankton using 100- and 200-µm meshed plankton nets with opening and closing mechanism. Rhincalanus nasutus ranked fourth most common taxon among the copepod-dominated samples. There was no significant difference between the abundance of the species caught in the two plankton nets. Adult females largely contributed to abundance peaks, while adult males comprised less than half the abundance of females. Younger copepodite stages (<CV) of both sexes were very few while naupliar stages were not observed. There was no significant difference in the depth-integrated abundance of R. nasutus between Sindangan Bay and Dipolog Bay, but it differed significantly with time of day. A crepuscular upward vertical migration is suggested by the early morning highest abundance in all depth strata sampled, and another smaller peak around sunset in deeper (65-200m) strata. Multiple linear regression analysis indicated highest R. nasutus abundance also associated with lowest tide and turbidity levels. A relatively homogenous set of conditions in environmental variables throughout the study area allowed us to speculate that the causes of such crepuscular behaviour may be attributed to low tide, least turbid waters, and position maintenance of R. nasutus in a highly advective upwelling system, but less likely associated with predator avoidance.
The calanoid copepod Rhincalanus nasutus belongs to Family Eucalanidae which includes three other circumglobal genera: Eucalanus, Pareucalanus, Subeucalanus (Bradford-Grieve 1994; Mulyadi 2004). Rhincalanus nasutus is common in the tropical and subtropical regions of all oceans, inhabits epi- to bathypelagic depths (0-2000 m depth), and is also found in shelf and slope areas and in shallow coastal embayments (Schnack-Schiel et al. 2008). .. . . . . .
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