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  1. Abstract

    Characterization of species diversity of zooplankton is key to understanding, assessing, and predicting the function and future of pelagic ecosystems throughout the global ocean. The marine zooplankton assemblage, including only metazoans, is highly diverse and taxonomically complex, with an estimated ~28,000 species of 41 major taxonomic groups. This review provides a comprehensive summary of DNA sequences for the barcode region of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) for identified specimens. The foundation of this summary is the MetaZooGene Barcode Atlas and Database (MZGdb), a new open-access data and metadata portal that is linked to NCBI GenBank and BOLD data repositories. The MZGdb provides enhanced quality control and tools for assembling COI reference sequence databases that are specific to selected taxonomic groups and/or ocean regions, with associated metadata (e.g., collection georeferencing, verification of species identification, molecular protocols), and tools for statistical analysis, mapping, and visualization. To date, over 150,000 COI sequences for ~ 5600 described species of marine metazoan plankton (including holo- and meroplankton) are available via the MZGdb portal. This review uses the MZGdb as a resource for summaries of COI barcode data and metadata for important taxonomic groups of marine zooplankton and selected regions, including the North Atlantic, Arctic, North Pacific, andmore »Southern Oceans. The MZGdb is designed to provide a foundation for analysis of species diversity of marine zooplankton based on DNA barcoding and metabarcoding for assessment of marine ecosystems and rapid detection of the impacts of climate change.

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  2. Abstract

    Marine plastic debris floating on the ocean surface is a major environmental problem. However, its distribution in the ocean is poorly mapped, and most of the plastic waste estimated to have entered the ocean from land is unaccounted for. Better understanding of how plastic debris is transported from coastal and marine sources is crucial to quantify and close the global inventory of marine plastics, which in turn represents critical information for mitigation or policy strategies. At the same time, plastic is a unique tracer that provides an opportunity to learn more about the physics and dynamics of our ocean across multiple scales, from the Ekman convergence in basin-scale gyres to individual waves in the surfzone. In this review, we comprehensively discuss what is known about the different processes that govern the transport of floating marine plastic debris in both the open ocean and the coastal zones, based on the published literature and referring to insights from neighbouring fields such as oil spill dispersion, marine safety recovery, plankton connectivity, and others. We discuss how measurements of marine plastics (bothin situand in the laboratory), remote sensing, and numerical simulations can elucidate these processes and their interactions across spatio-temporal scales.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023
  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 10, 2023
  6. Marine zooplankton are rapid-responders and useful indicators of environmental variability and climate change impacts on pelagic ecosystems on time scales ranging from seasons to years to decades. The systematic complexity and taxonomic diversity of the zooplankton assemblage has presented significant challenges for routine morphological (microscopic) identification of species in samples collected during ecosystem monitoring and fisheries management surveys. Metabarcoding using the mitochondrial Cytochrome Oxidase I (COI) gene region has shown promise for detecting and identifying species of some – but not all – taxonomic groups in samples of marine zooplankton. This study examined species diversity of zooplankton on the Northwest Atlantic Continental Shelf using 27 samples collected in 2002-2012 from the Gulf of Maine, Georges Bank, and Mid-Atlantic Bight during Ecosystem Monitoring (EcoMon) Surveys by the NOAA NMFS Northeast Fisheries Science Center. COI metabarcodes were identified using the MetaZooGene Barcode Atlas and Database ( ) specific to the North Atlantic Ocean. A total of 181 species across 23 taxonomic groups were detected, including a number of sibling and cryptic species that were not discriminated by morphological taxonomic analysis of EcoMon samples. In all, 67 species of 15 taxonomic groups had ≥ 50 COI sequences; 23 species had >1,000 COImore »sequences. Comparative analysis of molecular and morphological data showed significant correlations between COI sequence numbers and microscopic counts for 5 of 6 taxonomic groups and for 5 of 7 species with >1,000 COI sequences for which both types of data were available. Multivariate statistical analysis showed clustering of samples within each region based on both COI sequence numbers and EcoMon counts, although differences among the three regions were not statistically significant. The results demonstrate the power and potential of COI metabarcoding for identification of species of metazoan zooplankton in the context of ecosystem monitoring.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 22, 2023
  7. Aquatic environments encompass the world’s most extensive habitats, rich with sounds produced by a diversity of animals. Passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) is an increasingly accessible remote sensing technology that uses hydrophones to listen to the underwater world and represents an unprecedented, non-invasive method to monitor underwater environments. This information can assist in the delineation of biologically important areas via detection of sound-producing species or characterization of ecosystem type and condition, inferred from the acoustic properties of the local soundscape. At a time when worldwide biodiversity is in significant decline and underwater soundscapes are being altered as a result of anthropogenic impacts, there is a need to document, quantify, and understand biotic sound sources–potentially before they disappear. A significant step toward these goals is the development of a web-based, open-access platform that provides: (1) a reference library of known and unknown biological sound sources (by integrating and expanding existing libraries around the world); (2) a data repository portal for annotated and unannotated audio recordings of single sources and of soundscapes; (3) a training platform for artificial intelligence algorithms for signal detection and classification; and (4) a citizen science-based application for public users. Although individually, these resources are often met on regionalmore »and taxa-specific scales, many are not sustained and, collectively, an enduring global database with an integrated platform has not been realized. We discuss the benefits such a program can provide, previous calls for global data-sharing and reference libraries, and the challenges that need to be overcome to bring together bio- and ecoacousticians, bioinformaticians, propagation experts, web engineers, and signal processing specialists (e.g., artificial intelligence) with the necessary support and funding to build a sustainable and scalable platform that could address the needs of all contributors and stakeholders into the future.« less
  8. In this paper, we outline the need for a coordinated international effort toward the building of an open-access Global Ocean Oxygen Database and ATlas (GO 2 DAT) complying with the FAIR principles (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable). GO 2 DAT will combine data from the coastal and open ocean, as measured by the chemical Winkler titration method or by sensors (e.g., optodes, electrodes) from Eulerian and Lagrangian platforms (e.g., ships, moorings, profiling floats, gliders, ships of opportunities, marine mammals, cabled observatories). GO 2 DAT will further adopt a community-agreed, fully documented metadata format and a consistent quality control (QC) procedure and quality flagging (QF) system. GO 2 DAT will serve to support the development of advanced data analysis and biogeochemical models for improving our mapping, understanding and forecasting capabilities for ocean O 2 changes and deoxygenation trends. It will offer the opportunity to develop quality-controlled data synthesis products with unprecedented spatial (vertical and horizontal) and temporal (sub-seasonal to multi-decadal) resolution. These products will support model assessment, improvement and evaluation as well as the development of climate and ocean health indicators. They will further support the decision-making processes associated with the emerging blue economy, the conservation of marine resources and theirmore »associated ecosystem services and the development of management tools required by a diverse community of users (e.g., environmental agencies, aquaculture, and fishing sectors). A better knowledge base of the spatial and temporal variations of marine O 2 will improve our understanding of the ocean O 2 budget, and allow better quantification of the Earth’s carbon and heat budgets. With the ever-increasing need to protect and sustainably manage ocean services, GO 2 DAT will allow scientists to fully harness the increasing volumes of O 2 data already delivered by the expanding global ocean observing system and enable smooth incorporation of much higher quantities of data from autonomous platforms in the open ocean and coastal areas into comprehensive data products in the years to come. This paper aims at engaging the community (e.g., scientists, data managers, policy makers, service users) toward the development of GO 2 DAT within the framework of the UN Global Ocean Oxygen Decade (GOOD) program recently endorsed by IOC-UNESCO. A roadmap toward GO 2 DAT is proposed highlighting the efforts needed (e.g., in terms of human resources).« less