Ocean and Polar Research
To determine if Antarctic krill employ body shrinkage as one of its overwintering mechanisms in the field, Euphausia superba and Euphausia crystallorophias were collected during fall and winter in and around Marguerite Bay through US Southern Ocean GLOBEC field programs during fall and winter 2001 and 2002. The relationships between the body length and weight of both krill species were exponentially correlated with no significant differences between the two species (p>0.05). The ratio between eye diameter and body length of individual krill was examined in an expectation that it could be used as an indicator of the body shrinkage as previously suggested by Shin and Nicol (2002). These ratios were significantly different between the two krill species. Especially, E. crystallorophias had bigger eyes than E. superba. In both krill species, eye diameters were highly correlated with body lengths (regression coefficients ≥ 0.70). For E. crystallorophias, no significant differences of the ratio of eye diameter/body length were detected between fall and winter. Even though the ratios for E. superba were seasonally varied, it was not clear whether body shrinkage was an actual and critical overwintering mechanism for the krill population found in this study area. These results suggest that some individuals of E. superba might experience the body shrinkage during a part of their life, but this morphological index alone (eye diameter/body length) may be insufficient to unambiguously separate the shrunk krill from the non-shrunk ones in the field-collected animals.
Original Publication Citation
Ju, S.J., Harvey, H.R., Shin, H.C., Kim, Y., & Kang, S.H. (2004). Does antarctic krill employ body shrinkage as an overwintering strategy? Ocean and Polar Research, 26(4), 679-684. doi: 10.4217/OPR.2004.26.4.679
Ju, Se-Jong; Harvey, H. Rodger; Shinn, H. C.; Kim, Y.; and Kang, S. H., "Does Antarctic Krill Employ Body Shrinkage as an Overwintering Strategy?" (2004). OES Faculty Publications. 154.