Research highlight

Silver hake fish follow the Gulf Stream

Nature Communications

August 3, 2011

The northward shift in the distribution of the Silver hake, observed over the past 40 years, can be linked to the path of the Gulf Stream, shows a study published in Nature Communications this week. This suggests that the occurrence of this commercially important fish could be forecast on decadal scales on the northeast coast of the US using the more northerly position of the Gulf Stream predicted by climate models.

Janet Nye and colleagues present an example of how the spatial distribution of a species shifts in response to changing climate conditions, such as temperature. Large-scale atmospheric and oceanic changes in the North Atlantic vary the bottom water temperatures on the shelf and the position of the Gulf Stream, which the adult Silver hake respond to.

doi: 10.1038/ncomms1420

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