Environmental limitations on the diel vertical migration of meroplanktonic species within a small bay

Master Thesis subject (30 ECTS)
This thesis will evaluate how variability in near-shore water stratification affects diel vertical migration of meroplanktonic species within Cartagena Bay, a small embayment located at a coastal upwelling system. Along this bay a small-scale spatial structure in thermal stratification has been identified. At the northern side, diurnal changes in water temperature are usually observed, while at the southern side, at the lee of equatorward prevailing upwelling winds, the water column is strongly stratified all day long. There is strong evidence that water column stratification affects the vertical displacement of zooplanktonic species, therefore differences in diel vertical migration patterns between both extremes of the bay are expected. For the development of this thesis we will conduct two oceanographic cruises of 24 hours during summer, where we will collect zooplankton and physical data at different layers through the water column at both extremes of the bay. Then, we will identify and quantify meroplankton species at the laboratory.
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Dr. Sergio Navarrete
Reference Number: RP-47651