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Journal of Marine Biology
Volume 2009, Article ID 640215, 10 pages
Research Article

Growth Rate Potential of Juvenile Sockeye Salmon in Warmer and Cooler Years on the Eastern Bering Sea Shelf

1NOAA, NMFS, AFSC, Auke Bay Laboratories, Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute, 17109 Point Lena Loop Road, Juneau, AK 99801, USA
2Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Biological Station, 3190 Hammond Bay Road, Nanaimo, BC, Canada V9T 6N7
3Department of Biology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3020, Victoria, BC, Canada V8W 3N5

Received 11 February 2009; Accepted 18 May 2009

Academic Editor: Jakov Dulčić

Copyright © 2009 Edward V. Farley Jr. and Marc Trudel. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A spatially explicit bioenergetics model was used to predict juvenile sockeye salmon Oncorhynchus nerka growth rate potential (GRP) on the eastern Bering Sea shelf during years with cooler and warmer spring sea surface temperatures (SSTs). Annual averages of juvenile sockeye salmon GRP were generally lower among years with cooler SSTs and generally higher in offshore than nearshore regions of the eastern Bering Sea shelf during years with warmer SSTs. Juvenile sockeye salmon distribution was significantly ( ) related to GRP and their prey densities were positively related to spring SST ( ). Juvenile sockeye salmon GRP was more sensitive to changes in prey density and observed SSTs during years when spring SSTs were warmer (2002, 2003, and 2005). Our results suggest that the pelagic productivity on the eastern Bering Sea shelf was higher during years with warmer spring SSTs and highlight the importance of bottom-up control on the eastern Bering Sea ecosystem.