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Climate Variability Effects On Long-term Macrofaunal Abundance Trends In The German Bight (North Sea) | 18461
ISSN: 2155-9910

Journal of Marine Science: Research & Development
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Climate variability effects on long-term macrofaunal abundance trends in the German Bight (North Sea)

2nd International Conference on Oceanography

Mehdi Ghodrati Shojaei, Thomas Brey and Lars Gutowand Jennifer Dannheim

Posters: J Marine Sci Res Dev

DOI: 10.4172/2155-9910.S1.007

We examined long-term variability in the abundance of German Bight soft bottom zoobenthos together with the environmental factors responsible for these dynamics using one of the most comprehensive long-term ecological data sets in the North Sea. Dynamic factor analysis (DFA), which is particularly suitable for analyzing relatively short (>15-25 yrs.), non-stationary multivariate time series, was used to identify common trends. The analysis revealed two major overlaying temporal trends in the benthic macrofauna. The most important DFA common trend (i.e. first common trend) is characterized by a slight decrease until mid-1990s followed by a sharp trough in the late 1990s. Subsequently it increased again until the end of time series. The second trend showed considerable fluctuations over time with two sharp troughs from 1981 to 1986 and from 1996 to 1999. Our analysis confirms that temperature is the predominant environmental driver of temporal variations in German Bight macrofaunal. Additionally, a strong correlation between temperature and the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAO) indicates the crucial role of temperature as a mediator between climate variability and benthic fauna in the German Bight