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Working group 6: Mid-trophic Automatic Acoustic Sampling

Scientific objectives

Despite their wide spatio-temporal distribution, huge abundance and crucial importance for both the biogeochemistry of the ocean and the distribution and abundance of top predators, mid-trophic level organisms (meso-zooplanktonic and micro-nektonic organisms preyed by top predators) are still one of the less known components of pelagic ecosystems. The overarching objective of the MAAS project is to provide near real-time 3D global scale monitoring of mid - trophic level organisms.

Concretely, the MAAS project proposes to develop observational platforms equipped with multi-frequency acoustics to provide data for identification and quantification of mid-trophic organisms on a global scale, to widely deploy automated acoustic recorders using a variety of platforms and to reliably transfer data to the users through the development of dedicated shared databases. In collaboration with WG4, routines and protocols will simultaneously be developed to include and/or assimilate these data into ecosystem models to validate or constrain the mid-trophic level groups.

Working group activities

  • 'Toward a global observation and modelling system for studying the ecology of the open ocean using acoustics', MAAS workshop (4-6 May 2011, Bergen, Norway). More info
  • 'Designing an Ocean Mid-Trophic Automatic Acoustic Sample', CLIOTOP MAAS Workshop, (15-19 January 2007, Sète, France). More info


  • Handegard, N. O., Buisson, L. d., Brehmer, P., Chalmers, S. J., De Robertis, A., Huse, G., Kloser, R., Macaulay, G., Maury, O., Ressler, P. H., Stenseth, N. C. & Godø, O. R. 2012. Towards an acoustic-based coupled observation and modelling system for monitoring and predicting ecosystem dynamics of the open ocean. Fish and Fisheries, DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-2979.2012.00480.x. Article




IMR, Norway


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