Marine Productivity, Natural Environment Research Council, United Kingdom

Data Center Description
These pages give details of the Marine Productivity research
programme. The programme's aim is to investigate the population
dynamics of zooplankton (the tiny animals that drift with the currents
in the sea) and particularly the way physical factors such as
temperature, water movements etc. influence those dynamics. The
programme aims to develop coupled modelling and observational systems
for the pelagic (open water) ecosystem.

Marine Productivity provides a major UK contribution to the
international Global Ocean Ecosystem Dynamics project (GLOBEC). Effort
is directed at testing hypotheses addressing the questions:

-How are basin-scale structures in zooplankton species maintained?

-How do zooplankton species respond to basin-scale forcing?

-What are the impacts of basin-scale physical changes on secondary
production in shelf seas?

Similar studies on the physical factors controling the distributions
of key zooplankton species (and their implications for higher trophic
levels) are being planned by Canada and the US for the Labrador Sea
and adjacent shelf areas, as part of their national GLOBEC programmes.

An exciting possibility is that this suite of complementary research
for the North Atlantic will enable us to understand and predict marine
ecosystem behaviour over the complete range of relevant ecological
scales, covering not only species' physiologies, life cycles and
trophic interactions, but also the climatic factors operating at the
regional and global level.


[Summary provided by the Natural Environment Research Council.]

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