Marine Ecosystem Study for Sustainable Utilization of @Biological Resources
(Deep-Sea Ecosystem and Exploitation Programme)
@In the marine ecosystem, phytoplankton distributes in shallower layer than 200 m because solar radiation is attenuated with depth and too weak for photosynthesis deeper than 200 m. The dim-lit deeper layer is, however, not the world of silence. Especially in the mesopelagic layer (200-1000 m), many kinds of organisms, such as zooplankton, shrimp, fish, jellyfish, distribute and constitute the mesopelagic ecosystem beneath the sun-lit euphotic layer. As phytoplankton does not distribute in the mesopelagic ecosystem, all the organisms in this ecosystem are dependent on organic matter transported from the euphotic layer, or migrate up to the euphotic layer. Through the processes of the organic matter transport and vertical migration of the organisms, the mesopelagic ecosystem and epipelagic ecosystem interact each other. Human being receive many services including fisheries product from the ocean. Most of fisheries products are harvested from shallow layer of the ocean. However, in order to utilize the marine biological resources, we need to know both the epipelagic and mesopelagic ecosystems and their interaction. The purposes of the DEEP are unveiling the components and structure of the mesopelagic ecosystem including demersal ecosystem, transport processes of organic matter from the epipelagic layer and the interaction between epipelagic ecosystem and one beneath the euphotic layer for the sustainable and legitimate utilizeztion of marine resources.
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