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Abstract

We examined the vertical distributions of walleye pollock Theragra chalcogramma juveniles for two size groups (smaller and larger than 30 mm) during the period of transition for feeding (PTF) and after this period in Funka Bay, Hokkaido, Japan. Samplings were conducted in May and June in 2006 and 2007, and water temperature and salinity were measured. The correlation between juvenile sizes and distributed depth was observed using net sampling. From this result, size groups were divided by depth. In addition, the distribution and abundance of juveniles were examined using acoustic data. In the PTF (May), juvenile size increased with increasing depth, and after the PTF (June), most juveniles descended. In the PTF, juveniles smaller than 30 mm in TL dominated above 43 m depth in 2006, while juveniles larger than 30 mm in TL dominated below 18 m depth in 2007. After the PTF, juvenile sizes were larger in 2006 than in 2007. The relationships between juvenile distributions and water masses in the PTF were analyzed, and it was found that surface water of coastal Oyashio water (S-CO) dominated in the layers where small juveniles were distributed, and that Oyashio water (OW) dominated in the layers where large juveniles were distributed.

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