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Climate change and decadal shifts in the phenology of larval fishes in the California Current ecosystem
- Asch, Rebecca G.
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2015 v.112 no.30 pp. E4065
- fish, fisheries, global warming, hatcheries, larvae, phenology, terrestrial ecosystems, zooplankton, Pacific Ocean
- In terrestrial ecosystems, earlier phenology (i.e., seasonal timing) is a hallmark organismal response to global warming. Less is known about marine phenological responses to climate change, especially in Eastern Boundary Current Upwelling (EBCU) ecosystems that generate >20% of fish catch. The phenology of 43 EBCU fish species was examined over 58 years; 39% of phenological events occurred earlier in recent decades, with faster changes than many terrestrial ecosystems. Zooplankton did not shift their phenology synchronously with most fishes. Fishes that aren’t changing their phenology synchronously with zooplankton may be subject to mismatches with prey, potentially leading to reduced recruitment to fisheries. Adjusting the timing of seasonal management tactics (e.g., fishery closures, hatchery releases) may help ensure that management remains effective.