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Distribution patterns of mesopelagic fishes with special reference to Vinciguerria lucetia Garman 1899 (Phosichthyidae: Pisces) in the Humboldt Current Region off Peru
Conejo, R.; Koppelmann, R. (2006). Distribution patterns of mesopelagic fishes with special reference to Vinciguerria lucetia Garman 1899 (Phosichthyidae: Pisces) in the Humboldt Current Region off Peru. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 149(6): 1519-1537. hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s00227-006-0319-z
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Conejo, R.
  • Koppelmann, R.

Abstract
    The horizontal and vertical distributions of adult mesopelagic fishes are described from acoustic and trawl surveys over the full-depth of 500 m at 169 stations on a longitudinal transect crossing the Humboldt Current (03°45'S, 81°76'W and 18°23'S, 71°13'W) at 50–200 nautical miles off Peru during austral spring (October–November) of 2001, 2002 and 2003. A total of 2,952 kg of fishes was collected, which included 13 families, 23 genera and 28 species. The mesopelagic community is dominated by the families Phosichthyidae (Vinciguerria lucetia), Myctophidae (Diogenichthys laternatus and Lampanyctus idostigma) and Bathylagidae (Leuroglossus urotranus), accounting for 60.4, 12.8 and 3.7%, respectively, of the total catch. Based on horizontal distribution patterns these species were categorized into three groups, i.e. northern-central upwelling front group (L. urotranus, Nemichthys fronto and Scopelarchoides nicholsi), Southern upwelling front group (Hygophum reinhardti, Myctophum nitidulum, Paralepis sp and Scopeloberyx sp.) and pan-Humboldt Current group (V. lucetia, D. laternatus, L. (Nannobrachium) idostigma, L. omostigma, M. aurolaternatum, Triphoturus oculeus, Bathylagus (Melanolagus) berycoides, Leuroglossus stilbius, Argyropelecus affinis, Sternoptyx obscura, Melamphaes sp., Stomias sp. and Scopelosaurus sp.). Nighttime vertical distribution was characterized by a single abundance peak in the upper 50 m. Daytime patterns showed three peaks of abundance: an upper peak, in the upper 100 m, a midwater peak between 200 and 400 m, coinciding with an oxygen minimum zone, and a deeper peak between 400 and 500 m. V. lucetia was dominant in the upper and midwater peaks while myctophids, other planctivorous and piscivorous fishes were distributed in the midwater. Acoustic back-scattered energy (S a) was ubiquitous in the region. Maximum S a was mainly located between 11° and 18°S during day and night. V. lucetia is a significant component of the sound-scattering layers in the Humboldt Current Region off Peru.

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