Project: Baltic zooplankton cascades

The recent introduction of the alien ctenophore Mnemiopsis into the Baltic is alarming and may exacerbate existing perturbations such as eutrophication, over fishing, climate change and invasive species. We aim to test the overall hypothesis that effects of Mnemiopsis will cascade in the pelagic food web in the Baltic. By use of models, experiments and field studies we will quantify ecosystem consequences of Mnemiopsis in the pelagic food web, from microbes to gelatinous top predators. Focal topics include predation on cod eggs and larvae, changes in water clarity leading to regime shifts from fish to jellyfish and couplings between plankton and microbes. Interactions and cascading effects will be quantified within natural spatial (Baltic proper, Bothnian Sea, Bothnian Bay) and environmental (oxygen, temperature, salinity, light, N, P) gradients. We will monitor Mnemiopsis synchronically with environmental and biological parameters relevant for other trophic levels. The project gathers the best competence available to address these processes. State-of-the-art techniques will be applied in field, laboratory and modelling studies. The altered pelagic community balance in the Baltic may have severe consequences for biodiversity. Negative socio-economic consequences for fisheries and industries may be significant, but the project will provide fundamental insights for policy making and prudent fisheries and ecosystem management of the Baltic.

Acronym BAZOOCA (Reference Number: 92)
Duration 01/10/2008 - 30/09/2011
Project Topic environmental research / marine ecology
Project Results
(after finalisation)
Website visit project website
Network BONUS+
Call BONUS+ Call in 2007

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Göteborg University Coordinator Sweden
2 Technical University of Denmark Partner Denmark
3 Linnaeus University Partner Sweden
4 Umeå University Partner Sweden
5 Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute Partner Sweden
6 University of Helsinki Partner Finland
7 University of Bergen Partner Norway