Spatial distribution of macrozoobenthic production on the northern Norwegian shelf

Jennifer.Dannheim [ at ]


Benthic marie systems of the Norwegian shelf belong to the most diverse cold water systems on marine shelves. At the same time these systems experience strong anthropogenic impacts and provide significant services and goods, which calls for a sustainable management based on an ecosystem approach. The MAREANO project (Marine AREA database for NOrwegian coasts and sea areas) aims at addressing the knowledge gaps on the seabed and environment as the base for a sustainable management. Therefore, large parts of the northern Norwegian shelf have been intensively studied with multibeam echosounder, providing detailed bathymetry data for terrain analysis and backscatter data, which aids sediment interpretation. The area has also been sampled by different biological gears (video, beam trawl, grab, epibenthic sled) to investigate benthic habitat distribution. Species diversity, abundance and biomass have been determined, and secondary production and productivity of macrozoobenthic organisms modeled. Here, we present results from data covering an area of 48 000 km2 of the Norwegian continental margin between the Lofoten islands and North Cape and from the Norwegian and Barents Sea. The study area stretches from banks on the shelf (80 m depth) to the deep-sea plains (2750 m), and has been samples with 101 stations during seven cruises from 2006-2009. This dataset is unique in spatial coverage as it presents for the first time large-scale macrozoobenthic production on the Norwegian continental shelf. We will present spatial distribution of the macrozoobenthic production and productivity, together with an introductory analysis of the connections between different benthic biological characteristics (taxonomic, functional groups) and sediment as well as terrain parameters for benthic landscapes that have been defined for the same area using video analyses. For the first time, the outcomes will allow to estimate large-scale benthic production and productivity and therefore to evaluate high and low productive benthic regions on the Norwegian shelf.

Item Type
Conference (Talk)
Publication Status
Event Details
Arctic Frontiers, 21 Jan 2013 - 25 Jan 2013, Tromsø, Norway.
Eprint ID
Cite as
Tandberg, A. H. , Dannheim, J. , Jensen, H. , Dolan, M. F. J. , Bellec, V. , Buhl-Mortensen, P. and Holte, B. (2013): Spatial distribution of macrozoobenthic production on the northern Norwegian shelf , Arctic Frontiers, Tromsø, Norway, 21 January 2013 - 25 January 2013 .

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