Dr. Mark Ohman, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Copepods are ubiquitous aquatic crustaceans that play a pivotal role in ocean food webs and biogeochemical cycles. They are highly diverse and known to occupy all bathymetric provinces ranging from hadal depths in the deep sea to transient melt ponds high in the Himalayas. Their Diel Vertical Migration (DVM) behavior varies widely among species and across life history stages in a complex manner. I sought to test the utility of a trait-based approach in reducing the complexity of interspecific differences in DVM, using body size as a master trait. The results will illustrate some insights from (and limitations of) such simplifications and also show how DVM is further modulated by optical properties of the ocean water column. I will also touch on a new approach to studying zooplankton ecology using an autonomous Zooglider, developed by the Instrument Development Group at SIO.