Inter-Research > MEPS > v468 > p245-253  
MEPS
Marine Ecology Progress Series

via Mailchimp

MEPS 468:245-253 (2012)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps09959

Spatial interactions between marine predators and their prey: herring abundance as a driver for the distributions of mackerel and harbour porpoise

Signe Sveegaard1,*, Jacob Nabe-Nielsen1, Karl-Johan Stæhr2, Torben Filt Jensen2, Kim N. Mouritsen1,3, Jonas Teilmann

1Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Frederiksborgvej 399, 4000 Roskilde, Denmark
2DTU Aqua, National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Technical University of Denmark, Nordsøen Forskerpark, Postboks 101, 9850 Hirtshals, Denmark
3Marine Ecology, Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Ole Worms Allé 1, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
*Email:

ABSTRACT: The distribution of marine predators is tightly coupled with that of their prey, and may also be affected by interactions between competing predators. In order to adopt an ecosystem approach to the management of a species, it is essential to understand these processes. In this study, we examined whether the distributions of 2 marine predators, harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena and mackerel Scomber scombrus, are related to the distribution of a major prey species, herring Clupea harengus, on a large spatial scale. Porpoise distribution data were obtained from satellite-tracked harbour porpoises (1998 to 2009), while mackerel and herring distribution data were found by the annual ICES acoustic herring surveys providing data with overlapping temporal and spatial scales (2000 to 2009). We found that the 3 species were not evenly distributed within the study area and that harbour porpoise distribution was best explained solely by the distribution of herring, while herring together with depth explained 50% of the mackerel distribution. These results underline the importance of an ecosystem approach in management plans for predatory species by including monitoring and management of main prey species.


KEY WORDS: Clupea harengus · Scomber scombrus · Phocoena phocoena · Satellite tracking · Acoustic survey · Cetacean · Mantel test · Hurdle model · GLM


Full text in pdf format 
Cite this article as: Sveegaard S, Nabe-Nielsen J, Stæhr KJ, Jensen TF, Mouritsen KN, Teilmann J (2012) Spatial interactions between marine predators and their prey: herring abundance as a driver for the distributions of mackerel and harbour porpoise. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 468:245-253. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps09959

Export citation
Mail this link - Contents Mailing Lists - RSS
Facebook - - linkedIn