Long-term Trend in Mean Density of Antarctic Krill (Euphausia superba) Uncertain
Annual Research & Review in Biology,
Two recent attempts to model the long-term trend in mean density of Antarctic krill in the southwestern sector of the Atlantic using the KRILLBASE dataset using different statistical methods as well as inclusion versus exclusion of data from “non-scientific” nets have resulted in disparate conclusions. The approach that used a linear mixed model (LMM) fitted to the log of mean density, after standardisation was applied to individual net hauls and with means calculated for 12 spatial strata by years between 1976 and 2016, gave a highly statistically significant linear “regional” decline north of 60oS and, to a lesser degree, south of this latitude. The alternative approach that used a ”hurdle” model fitted to the individual net haul data, excluded regional stratification, and excluded non-scientific nets failed to detect an overall significant decline. The method of modelling log transformed means was reappraised and corrected by applying a meta-analytic LMM approach. Additionally, nonlinear smooths in year by region and a smooth in mean “climatological temperature” were included in the LMM. This model showed on average a mostly consistent decline north of 60oS, however, neither trend was significantly different from a no-trend prediction with the trend north of 60oS highly uncertain. Uncertainty of predictions resulted in only weak power to detect a substantial decline of the order of 70% between 1985 and 2005. These model-based inferences neither strongly support nor reject a general hypothesis that there has been a dramatic decline in density of Antarctic krill in the Southwest Atlantic over this period.
- linear mixed models
- regression splines
- Markov Chain Monte Carlo estimation.
How to Cite
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