Over 20% of marine fishes shifting in the North and Barents Seas, but not in the Norwegian Sea

PeerJ. 2023 Aug 31;11:e15801. doi: 10.7717/peerj.15801. eCollection 2023.


Climate warming generally induces poleward range expansions and equatorward range contractions of species’ environmental niches on a global scale. Here, we examined the direction and magnitude of species biomass centroid geographic shifts in relation to temperature and depth for 83 fish species in 9,522 standardised research trawls from the North Sea (1998-2020) to the Norwegian (2000-2020) and Barents Sea (2004-2020). We detected an overall significant northward shift of the marine fish community biomass in the North Sea, and individual species northward shifts in the Barents and North Seas, in 20% and 25% of the species’ biomass centroids in each respective region. We did not detect overall community shifts in the Norwegian Sea, where two species (8%) shifted in each direction (northwards and southwards). Among 9 biological traits, species biogeographic assignation, preferred temperature, age at maturity and maximum depth were significant explanatory variables for species latitudinal shifts in some of the study areas, and Arctic species shifted significantly faster than boreal species in the Barents Sea. Overall, our results suggest a strong influence of other factors, such as biological interactions, in determining several species’ recent geographic shifts.

PMID:37667749 | PMC:PMC10475276 | DOI:10.7717/peerj.15801


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