The Open Ocean and Deep Floor
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The Open Ocean and Deep Floor. Plankton are the organisms which float in the water and have no ability to propel themselves against a current. They can be divided into phytoplankton (plants) and zooplankton (animals).

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The Open Ocean and Deep Floor

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The open ocean and deep floor

The Open Ocean and Deep Floor


The open ocean and deep floor

Plankton are the organisms which float in the water and have no ability to propel themselves against a current.

They can be divided into phytoplankton (plants) and zooplankton (animals).

Nekton are active swimmers and include marine fish, reptiles, mammals, birds and others.

Benthos are the organisms which live on the bottom (epifauna) or within the bottom sediments (infauna).

Some organisms cross from one lifestyle to another during their life, for example being planktonic early in life and benthonic later.

Classification of Lifestyle

9-3


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of Pelagic Environment

> 5000 species

Holoplankton are organisms that are planktonic for their entire life cycle.

Examples of holoplankton include diatoms, radiolarians, dinoflagellates, foraminifera, amphipods, krill, copepods, salps, and jellyfish.

Meroplankton organisms that are planktonic for only a part of their life cycles, usually the larval stage.

Examples of meroplankton include the larvae of sea urchins, starfish, crustaceans, marine worms, and most fish.

NektonExamples are adult krill, small fish, whales, and tuna


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of EpiPelagic or Photic Zone

Most animals are found there, yet 10% ocean volume

Environment: Light, Well Mixed, Nutrients

Food Source:primary production from Phytoplnakton

Adaptation: highly variable dependent on oceanic region


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of EpiPelagic or Photic Zone

Each Epipelagic zone is characterized by T and S associated with ocean circulation environment.

Example ofKrill Distribution


The open ocean and deep floor

Krill Distribution Patterns

(in the Epipelagic Zone)


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of MesoPelagic

Environment: Dim Light

Food Source: Animals relay on primary production from Photic Zone

Adaptation: Mesopelagic fishes seldom exceed 10 cm in length, and many are equipped with well-developed teeth, large mouths, highly sensitive eyes, and photophores.


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of MesoPelagic

  • Some mesopelagic fishes: (a) loosejaw, Aristostomias; (b) spookfish, Opistoproctus; and (c) hatchetfish, Argyropelecus. All are 5-20 cm in length.


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of BathyoPelagic

Environment: NO Light

Food Source: Small animals/fish from mesopelagic

Mostly Prey-Predator Environment

Adaptation: Bathypelagic fishes seldom exceed 10 cm in length, and many are equipped with well-developed teeth, large mouths, highly sensitive eyes, and photophores (only source of ligth).


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of Pelagic Zone

At different depths

1000 m

A few fish of the deep sea, shown at their typical depths. Most have reduced bodies, large mouths, and lures to attract prey.

4000 m


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Physical/Morphological:

Body shape and locomotion

Buoyancy regulations

Echolocation

more...

Behavioral:

Vertical migration and feeding technique

Schooling

Migration patterns

more…


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Body shape and different types of locomotion

Power and glide strokes of three pectoral-swimming tetrapods.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Body shape and speed

Streamlined body forms of two swift pelagic animals: (a) bottle-nosedolphin, Tursiops; (b) tuna, Thunnus.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Buoyancy regulation

Swim Bladder

  • The development and relative positions of physostomous and physoclistous swim bladders.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Echolocationa way of sensing. The animals emit high-pitched clicks and sense them as they bounce back off objects (like prey)

Cutaway view of the complex structure of a sperm whale head.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Feeding Strategies, feeding currents


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Feeding Strategies, vertical migration

Daily or seasonal changes in light intensity seem to be the most likely stimulus for vertical migrations.

A generalized kite diagram of net collections of adult female copepods, Calanus finmarchicus, during a complete one-day vertical migration cycle.


Feeding on dispersed prey

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Feeding Strategies, selective size

Feeding on Dispersed Prey

The appendicularian Oikopleura, within its mucous bubble. Arrows indicate path of water flow.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Schooling

  • Protection

  • As a means of reducing drag while swimming

  • To keep reproductively active members of a population together.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Migrations

  • Larger and faster nekton participate in regular and directed migrations that serve to integrate the reproductive cycles of adults into local and seasonal variations in patterns of primary productivity.

they follow ocean currents

Migratory patterns of the Bristol Bay sockeye salmon (top) and the east Pacific skipjack tuna (below). Adapted from Royce et al 1968, and Williams 1972.


The open ocean and deep floor

Adaptation Strategies in Pelagic Zone

Migrations

Elephant Seals

Geographical distribution of male and female elephant seals during post-molt (left) and post-breeding migrations. Adapted from Stewart and DeLong, 1993.


The open ocean and deep floor

Inhabitants of DEEP Sea Floor – Benthic Environments

Dominant Species:

echinoderms, polychaete worms, pycnogonids, and isopod and amphipod crustaceans become abundant. Mollusks and Sea stars decline in number.

Environment: High pressure, cold, lower dissolved oxygen (5 ppm), bioluminescence, slow currents, lots of sediments.

Food Source: mostly detritus + oxygen from above (respiration)

Adaptation: highly variable


The open ocean and deep floor

Seafloor images showing the deposition of phytodetritus before (a) and 2 months after (b) a phytoplankton bloom in the photic zone above (Courtesy of R. Lampitt).

Most benthic animals in the deep sea are infaunal deposit feeders, extracting nourishment from the sediment in much the same manner as earthworms.


The open ocean and deep floor

Recurring Hypoxia off Oregon Coast

In July 2002, an unprecedented low oxygen or hypoxic zone developed off the

central Oregon coast. The zone was extensive in size, at least 820 km2 and

resulted in widespread die-offs of marine fish and invertebrates. Research

indicates that this hypoxia can be linked to larger-scale, anomalous changes in

ocean circulation over the Eastern North Pacific in 2002. (June 17,2004, Nature

429: 749-754).

In June 2004, researchers at OSU1 again recorded dissolved oxygen values

over the central Oregon shelf that were below the hypoxia threshold of 1.43 ml l-


The open ocean and deep floor

Environment: High pressure, cold, lower dissolved oxygen (5 ppm), bioluminescence, slow currents, lots of sediments.


The open ocean and deep floor

Hydrothermal

Vents

and the discovery of new ecosystems


The open ocean and deep floor

Hydrothermal vent communities (red dots) and cold seeps (blue dots).


The open ocean and deep floor

  • Hydrothermal Vent Communities

    • Dissolved H2S emerging from seafloor cracks is used as an energy source by chemosynthetic bacteria

    • These bacteria become the source of nutrition for dense populations of the unique animals clustered around these springs.


The open ocean and deep floor

Comparison of primary production in phothsynthetic and chemosynthetic systems.


The open ocean and deep floor

Hydrothermal Vent Communities

(a)

(b)

External appearance (a) and internal anatomy (b) of the tubeworm, Riftia.


The open ocean and deep floor

Cold-Seep Communities

Densely populated animal communities dependent on chemosynthetic bacteria, include

cold-water brine seeps

methane seeps

earthquake-disturbed sediments of deep-sea fans


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