eCite Digital Repository

Review: the energetic value of zooplankton and nekton species of the Southern Ocean


Schaafsma, FL and Cherel, Y and Flores, H and van Franeker, JA and Lea, M-A and Raymond, B and van de Putte, AP, Review: the energetic value of zooplankton and nekton species of the Southern Ocean, Marine Biology, 165 Article 129. ISSN 0025-3162 (2018) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

2018 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

Official URL:

DOI: doi:10.1007/s00227-018-3386-z


Understanding the energy flux through food webs is important for estimating the capacity of marine ecosystems to support stocks of living resources. The energy density of species involved in trophic energy transfer has been measured in a large number of small studies, scattered over a 40-year publication record. Here, we reviewed energy density records of Southern Ocean zooplankton, nekton and several benthic taxa, including previously unpublished data. Comparing measured taxa, energy densities were highest in myctophid fishes (ranging from 17.1 to 39.3kJg−1 DW), intermediate in crustaceans (7.1 to 25.3kJg−1 DW), squid (16.2to 24.0kJg−1 DW) and other fish families (14.8to 29.9kJg−1 DW), and lowest in jelly fish (10.8to 18.0kJg−1 DW), polychaetes (9.2to 14.2kJg−1 DW) and chaetognaths (5.011.7kJg−1 DW). Data reveals differences in energy density within and between species related to size, age and other life cycle parameters. Important taxa in Antarctic food webs, such as copepods, squid and small euphausiids, remain under-sampled. The variability in energy density of Electrona antarctica was likely regional rather than seasonal, although for many species with limited data it remains difficult to disentangle regional and seasonal variability. Models are provided to estimate energy density more quickly using a species physical parameters. It will become increasingly important to close knowledge gaps to improve the ability of bioenergetic and food web models to predict changes in the capacity of Antarctic ecosystems to support marine life.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:calorimetry, energetic value, trophic pathways, energy density, ecosystem, marine
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Environmental management
Research Field:Conservation and biodiversity
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Coastal and estuarine systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of coastal and estuarine ecosystems
UTAS Author:Lea, M-A (Professor Mary-Anne Lea)
UTAS Author:Raymond, B (Dr Ben Raymond)
ID Code:127370
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:33
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2018-07-24
Last Modified:2019-07-30
Downloads:59 View Download Statistics

Repository Staff Only: item control page