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Title

Impact of global warming on European tidal estuaries: some evidence of northward migration of estuarine fish species

Publication Year

2011

Author(s)
  • Nicolas, Delphine
  • Chaalali, Aurelie
  • Drouineau, Hilaire
  • Lobry, Jeremy
  • Uriarte, Ainhize
  • Borja, Angel
  • Boet, Philippe
Source
REGIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE Volume: 11 Issue: 3 Pages: 639-649 Published: 2011
ISSN
1436-3798
Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine whether the latitudinal distribution of fish species that use estuaries to complete their entire life cycle has shifted northward as an expected consequence of global warming. The mean latitude of past fish species distributions found in 1970s' literature was compared with the mean latitude of distributions today based on fish density indices collected in 55 tidal estuaries along the Atlantic European seaboard, from Portugal to Scotland. Among the 15 most common species, 11 displayed a positive difference between current and past mean latitudes suggesting a northward shift of the populations. Using the occurrence of subtropical species in temperate areas as an indicator of water warming, the northernmost range limit of 10 subtropical species was subsequently focused on. Six of them were recorded up to their past northern latitudinal limit. These results reinforced the idea that a number of fish species associated to estuaries have migrated northwards over the last 30 years, possibly due to water warming. These ecological changes can get important managerial implications, i.e. in the assessment of the ecological status in European directives.

Author Keyword(s)
  • Latitudinal shift
  • Global warming
  • European tidal estuaries
  • Fish species
KeyWord(s) Plus
  • EASTERN CONTINENTAL-SHELF
  • RECENT CLIMATE-CHANGE
  • DIADROMOUS FISH
  • TRANSITIONAL WATERS
  • GUILD APPROACH
  • ATLANTIC FISH
  • MARINE FISHES
  • BISCAY
  • OCEAN
  • BAY
ESI Discipline(s)
  • Environment/Ecology
  • Social Sciences
Web of Science Category(ies)
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Environmental Studies
Adress(es)

[Nicolas, Delphine; Chaalali, Aurelie; Drouineau, Hilaire; Lobry, Jeremy; Boet, Philippe] Irstea, UR EPBX, F-33612 Cestas, France; [Uriarte, Ainhize; Borja, Angel] AZTI Tecnalia, Div Marine Res, Pasaia, Spain

Reprint Adress

Nicolas, D (reprint author), Irstea, UR EPBX, 50 Av Verdun, F-33612 Cestas, France.

Country(ies)
  • France
  • Spain
CNRS - Adress(es)

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Accession Number
WOS:000294058800016
uid:/N0GR8CGP
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