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Abstract

In the California Current Ecosystem, the California Undercurrent (CU) is the predominate subsurface current that transports nutrient-rich water from southern California poleward. In this study, we used a large dataset of spatially explicit in situ observations of Pacific hake (Merluccius productus) and the CU (36.5–48.3°N) to estimate relationships between northward undercurrent velocity and hake distribution and determine whether these relationships vary across space or life-history stage. We found that both hake occurrence and density had strong spatially complex relationships with the CU. In areas north of 44°N (central Oregon), the CU effect was spatially consistent and opposite for occurrence (negative) and density (positive), indicating that hake may aggregate in areas of high northward velocity in this region. In areas south of 44°N, the CU effect showed a cross-shelf gradient for both occurrence and density, indicating a more nearshore hake distribution when northward velocity is higher in this region. Together, our results suggest that future changes in the CU due to climate change are likely to impact hake differently in northern and southern areas.

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Information & Authors

Information

Published In

cover image Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Volume 81Number 2February 2024
Pages: 154 - 165

History

Received: 18 July 2023
Accepted: 3 October 2023
Accepted manuscript online: 18 October 2023
Version of record online: 12 December 2023

Data Availability Statement

Data generated or analyzed during this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.

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Key Words

  1. Pacific hake
  2. California Undercurrent
  3. ocean currents
  4. transport
  5. nonstationary

Authors

Affiliations

Environmental and Fisheries Sciences Division, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Port Orchard, WA 98366, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Formal analysis, Methodology, Writing – original draft, and Writing – review & editing.
Fish Ecology Division, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Newport, OR 97365, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Funding acquisition, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
Resource Ecology and Fisheries Management Division, Alaska Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, WA 98115, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
Sandra L. Parker-Stetter
Resource Assessment and Conservation Engineering Division, Alaska Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, WA 98115, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Data curation, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
Fishery Resource Analysis and Monitoring Division, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, WA 98112, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
John E. Pohl
Fishery Resource Analysis and Monitoring Division, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, WA 98112, USA
Author Contributions: Data curation, Writing – original draft, and Writing – review & editing.
Fishery Resource Analysis and Monitoring Division, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Newport, OR 97365, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
Department of Marine Sciences, University of Connecticut, Groton, CT 06340, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Methodology, and Writing – review & editing.
Institute of Ocean Sciences, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Sidney, BC V8L 4B2, Canada
Department of Biology, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada
Author Contributions: Conceptualization, Data curation, and Writing – review & editing.
Cooperative Institute for Climate, Ocean, and Ecosystem Studies, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98105, USA
Author Contributions: Conceptualization and Writing – review & editing.

Author Contributions

Conceptualization: MJM, MEH, MAH, SLP, KNM, AMB, SAS, SG, AJH
Data curation: SLP, JEP, SG
Formal analysis: MJM
Funding acquisition: MEH
Methodology: MJM, MEH, MAH, SLP, KNM, AMB, SAS
Writing – original draft: MJM, JEP
Writing – review & editing: MJM, MEH, MAH, SLP, KNM, JEP, AMB, SAS, SG, AJH

Competing Interests

The authors declare there are no competing interests.

Funding Information

NOAA Fisheries and the Environment: 16-08
Partial funding was provided by NOAA's Fisheries and the Environment (FATE) program (grant No. 16-08).

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