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Data from: Population structure in Atlantic cod in the eastern North Sea-Skagerrak-Kattegat: early life stage dispersal and adult migration

Citation

André, Carl et al. (2017), Data from: Population structure in Atlantic cod in the eastern North Sea-Skagerrak-Kattegat: early life stage dispersal and adult migration, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m3913

Abstract

Background: In marine fish species, where pelagic egg and larvae drift with ocean currents, population structure has been suggested to be maintained by larval retention due to hydrographic structuring and by homing of adult fish to natal areas. Whilst natal homing of adults has been demonstrated for anadromous and coral reef fishes, there are few documented examples of philopatric migration in temperate marine fish species. Results: Here, we demonstrate temporally stable genetic differentiation among spawning populations of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.), and present genetic and behavioural evidence for larval drift and philopatric migration in the eastern North Sea-Skagerrak-Kattegat area. We show that juvenile cod collected in the eastern Skagerrak and central Kattegat are genetically similar to cod from offshore spawning areas in the eastern North Sea. Genetic assignment of individual 2–5 year old fish indicates that cod residing at, or migrating towards, spawning areas in Kattegat and the North Sea display philopatric behaviours. Conclusions: Together these findings suggest a loop between spawning, larval drift and adult return-migrations to spawning areas and underlines that both oceanographic processes and migratory behaviour in the adult phase may be important for stock separation and integrity in marine temperate fishes such as Atlantic cod.

Usage Notes

Location

Skagerrak
Kattegat
North sea