Novel biodiversity baselines outpace models of fish distribution in Arctic waters
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During a recent marine biological expedition to the Northeast Greenland shelf break (latitudes 74–77 °N), we made the first discovery of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua), beaked redfish (Sebastes mentella) and capelin (Mallotus villosus). Our novel observations shift the distribution range of Atlantic cod >1000 km further north in East Greenland waters. In light of climate change, we discuss physical forcing and putative connections between the faunas of the Northeast Greenland shelf and the Barents Sea. We emphasise the importance of using real data in spread scenarios for understudied Arctic seas.
KeywordsAtlantic cod Barents Sea Climate change Northeast Greenland shelf Range extension of fishes
We thank the Government of Greenland (FL Nielsen) and the crew on board R/V Helmer Hanssen for access to the Greenland Sea, JS Laberg and F Strand for outlining the map, RB Larsen for gear expertise, and F Boero and four anonymous referees for commenting on the manuscript. The study is part of the TUNU-Programme, UiT The Arctic University of Norway.
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