Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Julia Stewart, Ph.D.
National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis

Humbolt squid in the California current system

Wednesday — October 30, 2013
Pacific Forum — 3:00 p.m.

Humboldt squid (Dosidicus gigas) have been increasingly documented throughout the California Current System after initial observations in 1997 with ROVs in Monterey Bay. There is concern that when highly abundant, Humboldt squid could greatly impact coastal ecosystems and fisheries because they forage on important commercial species (along with their staple diet of midwater species). Humboldt squid are highly migratory and tolerate hypoxic conditions in oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) while their midwater prey, competitors, and predators may be disadvantaged. Consequently, ongoing and likely future consequences of climate variability (i.e. OMZ shoaling) could be an important driver of their ongoing range expansion. I will discuss my Ph.D. and postdoctoral research at Hopkins Marine Station, where I worked with collaborators at Hopkins, NOAA, and MBARI. In addition to discoveries of migration speeds and habitat use, our results suggest that Humboldt squid are indirectly affected by OMZ shoaling through effects on the midwater community.

Coauthors: EL Hazen, SJ Bograd, JEK Byrnes, DG Foley, WF Gilly, BH Robison, JC Field, U Markaida



Next: November 6—Dr. James R. McFarlane, OC, CD, P.Eng., FCAE