Changes in the composition and abundance of ichthyoplankton along environmental gradients of the southern Baltic Sea

Małgorzata Dembek, Luiza Bielecka, Piotr Margoński, Tycjan Wodzinowski

Paper category: Original research paper
Corresponding author: Małgorzata Dembek (
DOI: 10.2478/ohs-2019-0030
Received: 15/02/2019
Accepted: 23/04/2019
Full text: here

Citation: Dembek, M., Bielecka, L., Margoński, P., et al. (2019). Changes in the composition and abundance of ichthyoplankton along environmental gradients of the southern Baltic Sea. Oceanological and Hydrobiological Studies, 48(4), pp. 328-336. Retrieved 10 Dec. 2019, from doi:10.2478/ohs-2019-0030


The research focuses mainly on the ichthyoplankton of the Baltic deeps – the inflow route from the North Sea. The ichthyoplankton was represented by eggs and larvae of nine fish species: sprat, cod, herring, European flounder, fourbeard rockling, longspined bullhead, straightnose pipefish, sand goby and great sandeel. The species composition of ichthyoplankton varied depending on the location of a given site – the number of taxa ranged from one to five. The Slupsk Furrow was the most diversified area in terms of the number of taxa, while the highest abundance of ichthyoplankton occurred in the Bornholm Basin. The sprat clearly dominated and inhabited all the surveyed depths. Of the remaining species, only cod eggs as well as eggs and larvae of the fourbeard rockling significantly contributed to this formation. They occurred within their main spawning grounds (Bornholm Deep in the near-bottom layers) and secondary spawning grounds (Slupsk Furrow and Gdansk Deep) where salinity and oxygenation of water favored their development. Biometric research has shown that the diameter of eggs was within the size range typical of the Baltic Sea.


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