Journal of Oceanography, Vol. 59 (No. 4), pp. 415-434, 2003
Richard D. Brodeur1*, Joseph P. Fisher2, Yasuhiro Ueno3, Kazuya Nagasawa4 and William G. Pearcy2
1Northwest Fisheries Science Center, NMFS, Newport, OR 97365, U.S.A.
2College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, U.S.A.
3Tohoku National Fisheries Research Institute, FRA, Hachinohe 031-0841, Japan
4National Research Institute of Aquaculture, FRA, Nikko 321-1661, Japan
(Received 30 May 2002; in revised form 25 October 2002; accepted 12 December 2002)
Abstract: During the 1980s and 1990s, scientific research cruises were conducted in both the eastern and western boundary regions of the North Pacific Ocean. The main purpose of these cruises was to examine the abundance and distribution patterns of juvenile salmon in coastal waters. These studies created one of the most extensive databases ever collected on the species composition of coastal Transition Zone epipelagic nekton in the North Pacific Ocean. Catch data from two purse seine and two surface trawl surveys (one each from off northern Japan and eastern Russia and off the West Coast of the U.S.) were examined using multivariate techniques to analyze the community structure of nektonic cephalopods, elasmobranchs, and teleosts in the coastal zone during the summer and autumn months. Juvenile salmonids are generally among the most common species caught, but in terms of overall abundance, other potential competitors with juvenile salmon, such as small squids and clupeoid fishes predominated the catches. Species diversity and dominance varied among areas and gear types. Distinct assemblages were found in each area, but the two regions had closely related species occupying similar ecological positions in each habitat.