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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 488:233-245 (2013)  -  DOI:

Influence of temperature and food availability on juvenile European anchovy Engraulis encrasicolus at its northern boundary

Kristina Raab1,2,*, Marcos Llope3, Leo A. J. Nagelkerke1, Adriaan D. Rijnsdorp1,2, Lorna R. Teal2, Priscilla Licandro4, Piet Ruardij5, Mark Dickey-Collas6

1Wageningen University Aquaculture and Fisheries Department, PO Box 338, 6700 AH Wageningen, The Netherlands
2Institute for Marine Resources and Ecosystem Studies (IMARES), PO Box 68, 1970 AB Ijmuiden, The Netherlands
3Instituto Español de Oceanografia (IEO), Muelle de Levante (Puerto Pesquero), Apdo. 2609, Cádiz 11006, Spain
4Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Sciences (SAHFOS), The Laboratory, Citadel Hill, Plymouth PL1 2PB, UK
5Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ), PO Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, Texel, The Netherlands
6International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), H. C. Andersens Boulevard 44-46, Copenhagen V 1553, Denmark

ABSTRACT: The European anchovy Engraulis encrasicolus population of the North Sea has increased and spread in recent decades, probably in response to the relaxation of limiting factors in its life history. We use models and empirical data to explore the effects of temperature and food availability during the first growing season on the adult anchovy population across the North Sea. First, we compare simulated growth during summer and autumn, from a dynamic energy budget model, with trends in the time series of anchovy survey catch per unit effort. The proportion of the area of the North Sea in which anchovy can grow to 10 cm (the potential growth habitat) correlates with the abundance of anchovy caught in surveys the following year. Second, spatio-temporal statistical modeling is used to show that anchovy abundance in surveys is related to environmental variables (temperature and food availability). Temperature explains the distribution and abundance of anchovy in the North Sea better than food availability or a combination of both environmental factors. We conclude that variations in growth during the first months of life can impact anchovy life cycle closure. Specifically for the North Sea anchovy, changes in temperature are more important than changes in food availability in allowing the fish to grow to overwintering size, under probably non-food-limited conditions.

KEY WORDS: Small pelagic fish growth · Life cycle closure · Range expansions · Generalised additive models · Physiological models

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Cite this article as: Raab K, Llope M, Nagelkerke LAJ, Rijnsdorp AD and others (2013) Influence of temperature and food availability on juvenile European anchovy Engraulis encrasicolus at its northern boundary. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 488:233-245.

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