TASC (Trans-Atlantic Study of Calanus) 1996 - 1999
TASC is a multi-national project to understand the physical and
biological process that control the population dynamics of the copepod
Calanus Finmarchicus, a key zooplankton species in the north-east
Atlantic. The project aims to stablish the relationship between the
physical and biological factors affecting annual recruitment and
reproduction ... of the species. This is an essential step towards
predicting the consequences of future climate change.
The following hypotheses were addressed:
1) The interaction between vertical migrations and shelf edge
hydrodynamics determines the ability of C. Finmarchicus to seasonally
colonise north-east Atlantic ecosystems from overwintering depths in
Norwegian Deep Water off the shelf edge.
2) Year-to-year variations in the timing and dynamics of shelf
populations are dependent on oceanic and shelf scale forcing.
3) The deep circulation in the Norwegian Sea Basin and overflow
into the North Atlantic is responsible for a 'teleconnection' between
C. Finmarchicus summer populations in north-east Atlantic rim
4) Latitudinal gradients in abiotic conditions and interactions
with predators control large scale differences in overwintering
5) The large scale demography, life history timing and generation
cycle characteristics of C. Finmarchicus are related to the basic
physiology of the species in relation to feeding conditions and the
pattern of entry to and emergence from diapause.
The project tested these hypotheses around the North Atlantic Rim:
Off Southern Iceland, the Faroe Plateau, the northern North Sea and
along the Norwegian Midshelf. The work programme combined laboratory
and mesocosm investigations of nutrition, growth and reproductive
biology with both large and small scale field studies. The
accumulated knowledge will be synthesised in a range of modeling
tasks and the results set in context by reference to statistical
analysis of long term time series data.
Information extracted from the TASC homepage: