Scientific Program
A 5-day symposium will consist of:
  (1) Plenary sessions in the morning of Day 1 (to introduce session themes) and in the afternoon of Day 5 (to summarize results and provide a wrap-up of the symposium);
  (2) Two parallel theme sessions in the afternoon of Day 1, all of Day 2, and in the mornings of Days 4 and 5;
  (3) Workshops all of Day 3.

Scientific sessions will include invited and contributed papers. Contributed papers will be selected for oral and poster presentation.

Posters will be on display for the duration of the symposium. Evening poster sessions/receptions will take place on Days 2 and 3. Poster presenters are expected to be available to answer questions. All coffee breaks and receptions will be held in the poster area to maximize opportunities to view the contributions and to interact with the presenters.

Additional Themes

The scientific community is invited to propose two more theme sessions or workshops. For those interested in submitting a proposal, please e-mail the PICES Secretariat ( or fill out the form on the symposium website before June 1, 2010



Opening Plenary Session

Plenary Speakers:

Zooplankton in “changing ocean”
Grégory Beaugrand (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Université des Sciences et Technologies de Lille 1, France)

Role of zooplankton in biogeochemical cycles
Deborah Steinberg (Virginia Institute of Marine Science, USA)

Outbreaks of gelatinous zooplankton
Shin-ichi Uye (Hiroshima University, Japan)

Modes of climate and food web variability in high latitude oceans
Kendra L. Daly (University of South Florida, USA)

Composition and succession of zooplankton communities - A global comparison
Torkel Gissel Nielsen (National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Technical University of Denmark, Denmark)

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Closing Plenary Session

Plenary Speaker:

Outcomes from the Symposium
Roger Harris (Plymouth Marine Laboratory, UK)

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S1 Session
Effects of climate variability on secondary production and community structure

Delphine Bonnet (Université Montpellier 2, France)
Catherine Johnson (Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
Angel Lopez-Urrutia (Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Spain)
Anthony Richardson (CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research and University of Queensland, Australia)

Invited Speaker:
Mark Ohman (Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD, USA)

Climate variability and change influence zooplankton production and community structure through changes in the physical and chemical environment, as well as through changes in primary producers and zooplankton predator dynamics. Understanding and predicting impacts of climate change on secondary production and zooplankton communities will be critical in the near future to managing aquatic resources and mitigating the impact of climate change and other anthropogenic stressors on aquatic ecosystems. In this session, we encourage presentations that contribute to understanding how climate change influences zooplankton production and community dynamics, including climate effects on zooplankton population growth rates, distribution and abundance, seasonal timing, community structure and interactions, interactions with higher and lower trophic levels, and food web structure. This session will embrace studies of both marine and freshwater systems, a diverse range of zooplankton taxa including microzooplankton and gelatinous zooplankton, and a broad range of approaches including modeling, experimental work, and field observations.

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S2 Session
Ecological interactions: Links to upper and lower trophic levels

Sanae Chiba (Research Institute for Global Change, JAMSTEC, Japan)
Enric Saiz (Institut de Ciencies del Mar , Spain)

Invited Speaker:
Diana Stoecker (University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, USA)

Zooplankton play a key role in the pelagic realm as a major link between primary producers and higher trophic levels, either directly or indirectly via protozooplankton, therefore being subject to either bottom-up and top-down control. Regionally-specific differences in food web structure and ecological interactions between trophic levels largely influence not only the biological productivity but also the biogeochemical processes acting in the region, such as the efficiency of the biological carbon pump. Recent studies have reported sound changes in zooplankton communities responding to various climatic and anthropogenic forcing, such as species diversity and size composition, seasonality, geographical distribution, etc., yet the mechanisms and consequences of those changes in terms of the functioning of the system and biogeochemical processes in the water column have not been fully investigated. In this session we aim for a better understanding of the complexity of the trophic interactions mediated by micro- and mesozooplankton, either as prey or as predator, in marine food webs, and in particular highlight studies that help explain how the above-mentioned spatio-temporal changes in zooplankton communities would affect biological production as well as biogeochemical processes. We expect papers on this scope, ranging from the smallest scales dealing with individual behavior to the largest scales dealing with long-term community change analysis, based on either laboratory experiments, field observation, and model simulation.

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S3 Session
Zooplankton life histories: Spatial connectivity, dormancy, and life cycle closure

Hans-Jürgen Hirche (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany)
Toru Kobari (Kagoshima University, Japan)
Jeffrey A. Runge (School of Marine Sciences and Gulf of Maine Research Institute, University of Maine, USA)

Invited Speaker:
Don Deibel (Memorial University, Canada)

Each zooplankton species has its own set of life history traits, influenced by its taxonomic lineage (e.g., gelatinous zooplankton, copepods, euphausids), the physical characteristics of the environment in which it resides and the suite of other species with which it interacts. In seasonal environments, life histories may include a dormant phase, which may occur at any life stage and vary in intensity from almost complete shutdown of metabolism to merely arrested reproductive activity. Losses from a population due to advection during dormancy or active phases may prevent life cycle closure, for example in upwelling zones, determining which species are dominant. Immigration from other populations may be required to sustain species abundance within a particular region. In this session we encourage presentations that together will depict the variety of zooplankton life histories across all taxonomic groups and how they interact with the physical environment at local, regional or basin scales to determine species abundance and diversity patterns.

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S4 Session
Small-scale biological-chemical-physical interactions in the plankton

David Fields (Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, U.S.A)

Invited Speaker:
John Dower (University of Victoria, BC, Canada)

Processes that occur at the level of the individual animal drive large scale distribution patterns of zooplankton populations. At the scale of the individual, motility, feeding rates, detection of signals, and encounter rates with other individuals are the product of the interactions between the individual and physical properties of their environment (e.g. viscosity, fluid motion, diffusion). Research on this topic is inherently interdisciplinary. It includes fluid dynamics across the viscous-inertial ranges, the study of functional morphology and structural analysis, investigations into the sensory perception of both mechanical and chemical cues, and much more. In this session, we invite contributions that explore the intimate interactions of zooplankton with their prey, predators, conspecifics, and their environment, framed within the context of large-scale distribution patterns of zooplankton.

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S5 Session
Zooplankton in upwelling and coastal systems

Jenny Huggett (Ocean and Coastal Management, South Africa)
Julie Keister (University of Washington, USA)

Invited Speaker:
Rubén Escribano
(COPAS, Universidad de Concepción, Chile)

Upwelling and coastal ecosystems exhibit high temporal and spatial variability in their physical and biological structure, are extremely productive, and are important to global fisheries and biogeochemical cycles. The zooplankton which inhabit these systems are diverse, exhibit a variety of life history strategies and physiological adaptations, and are integral to trophic functioning. In coastal upwelling systems in particular, zooplankton are exposed to strong alongshore and across-shelf circulation and physical gradients which structure their distributions. In addition, coastal regions are under increasing pressure from climate and human impacts that may lead to shifts in species composition, dominance, and distribution. In this session we will examine the behaviors, physiology, community structure, and spatial and temporal patterns of zooplankton in coastal ecosystems. Field, laboratory, and modeling studies will be considered, with an emphasis on studies that elucidate mechanisms of zooplankton variability in these highly dynamic regions.

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S6 Session
Zooplankton in polar ecosystems and extreme environments

Angus Atkinson (British Antarctic Survey, UK)
Carin Ashjian (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA)

Invited Speaker:
Øystein Varpe (Norwegian Polar Institute, Norway)

Polar waters and their marginal seas are characterised by low, fairly stable temperatures, intense variation in solar radiation amplified by winter ice cover, and high seasonal variation in pelagic primary production. Further, the fastest warming regions on the planet are at high latitudes. These habitats are undergoing dramatic environmental changes such as summer sea ice retreat in the Western Arctic, and are predicted to show the first signs of carbonate under-saturation. The extreme polar conditions require adaptations by micro-, meso-, and macro-zooplankton (herein “zooplankton”) including stenothermy, shrinkage, use of sea ice, differing phenologies, seasonal migrations and diet shifts plus pulsed reproduction and slow, strongly seasonal growth. Some of these attributes make polar zooplankton potentially sensitive even to small changes in temperature, sea ice extent, seasonality and the timing of food. Polar ecosystems also can provide glimpses into the future of climate change. They provide a natural test-bed to examine both the sensitivity (e.g. physiological limits) and the resilience (e.g. behavioural flexibility) of zooplankton. In this session we welcome studies from high latitudes of both hemispheres, examining the response of zooplankton to spatial and temporal environmental variability and change. We welcome also broader scale comparative contributions (of species, regions or hemispheres), especially those that explore the mechanisms of sensitivity or resilience.

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S7 Session
Zooplankton physiology and bioenergetics

Andrew Hirst (Queen Mary University of London, UK)
Maria Koski (National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Technical University of Denmark)

Invited Speaker:
Robert Campbell (University of Rhode Island, USA)

The physiological and bioenergetics of zooplankton are central to nutrient recycling, food-web transfer efficiency and biogeochemical transformations (such as the modification of sinking flux) in the world oceans. If we are to understand and model biogeochemical processes across a range of scales, we need to continue to refine our understanding of the transformations which zooplankton make. Further, physiology and bioenergetics are closely allied to a species fitness, and hence species success. This session aims to describe zooplankton physiology, to present frameworks on what shapes these rates, and our ability to improve their prediction. We expect to provide insights into the effects of physiological adaptations on individual fitness, food-web processes and global biogeochemical cycles, including considerations of changing environmental conditions.

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S8 Session
The role of zooplankton in biogeochemical cycles

Hiroaki Saito (Tohoku National Fisheries Research Institute, Japan)
Deborah Steinberg (Virginia Institute of Marine Science, USA)

Invited Speaker:
Santiago Hernandez-Leon (Universidad de Las Palmas de GC, Spain)

Zooplankton play an integral role in the cycling of elements in the sea. As key drivers of the biological pump, zooplankton feed in surface waters and produce sinking fecal pellets, and actively transport dissolved and particulate matter to depth via vertical migration. Zooplankton grazing and metabolism transforms particulate organic matter into dissolved forms, affecting primary producer populations, microbial remineralization, and particle export to the ocean's interior. The elemental stoichiometry of zooplankton and their prey often differ, resulting in non-Redfield cycling of C, N and P. We invite papers on role of zooplankton (both metazoan and protozoan) in biogeochemical cycles reflecting the significant strides that have been made in this area, as well as identifying crucial gaps in our knowledge. Topics may include, but are not limited to: the role of zooplankton in the biological pump, mesopelagic and deep sea processes, trophic interactions and nutrient cycling, ecological stoichiometry, effects on biogeochemical cycling (measured or modeled) of human or climate influenced changes in zooplankton community structure, and regional comparisons or global syntheses of the importance of zooplankton in biogeochemical cycles. This session theme is closely related to research goals within IMBER (Integrated Marine Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Research).

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S9 Session
The diverse role of meroplankton in the biology and ecology of marine systems

Claudio DiBacco (Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
Heidi L. Fuchs (Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University, USA)
Fabian Tapia (Centro FONDAP-COPAS, Universidad de Concepción, Chile)

Invited Speaker:
Jesús Pineda (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA)

Meroplankton are transient members of the plankton and crucial to the establishment and sustainability of marine communities. Local and global marine stressors (e.g., habitat destruction, resource over-harvesting, contaminant loading, climate change, introduction of non-native species) will impact some species in diverse ways as individuals move through both planktonic and benthic life stages. It is thus imperative to develop a better understanding of larval processes at all functional levels, from species to ecosystems. In this session, we welcome submissions on all meroplankton-related topics, including but not limited to larval behaviour and sensory ecology, dispersal and connectivity, invasions and fisheries, design of marine reserves and effects of climate change on larval processes.

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General Poster Session

Posters are invited on all aspects of zooplankton research, except those covered by Topic Sessions (S1-S9).


W1 Workshop
Zooplankton Individual Based Models

Harold P. Batchelder (Oregon State University, USA)
Douglas C. Speirs (University of Strathclyde, UK)

Invited Speaker:
Wendy C. Gentleman (Dalhousie University, Canada)

This workshop will review the use of individual-based models (IBMs) in zooplankton ecology, and the ongoing debate between those favouring density-based population models and those favouring more flexible, but more complex, simulation approaches.

Individual-based models are population models in which individual organisms, or quasi-individuals representing homogeneous groups of individuals, are explicitly represented as discrete elements of a computer simulation. Individuals have their own state variables (or i-state configuration), such as age, size, developmental stage, and physiological condition; population-level dynamics arise as emergent properties of the interactions among individuals and between individuals and their environment. This approach contrasts with population-level models (PLM), or aggregated mathematical models, in which population processes are described by relationships between densities of individuals. Although PLMs can represent individual properties, they do so through an i-state distribution over a population rather than explicitly representing individuals.

One of the main appeals of IBMs is that they provide an easy way of capturing population heterogeneity, or inter-population variability, because stochastic processes impacting individuals can readily be incorporated into simulations. When non-linear rate processes, the functional feeding response for example, determine population growth, the mean behaviour need not necessarily correspond to that predicted by using the underlying mean rates in a deterministic PLM. Because corresponding IBMs represent population heterogeneity explicitly and the population level outcomes emerge from this, such difficulties are side-stepped. A second advantage is that is much easier to introduce behavioural rules, especially those relating to movement, which can be extremely hard to represent in PLMs in a mathematically compact way. The inclusion of diel vertical migration in IBMs of marine zooplankton, for example, has helped to demonstrate the importance of such behaviour in the retention of populations in productive coastal upwelling zones.

The most fundamental difference between IBMs and PLMs is the continuum assumption underlying PLMs. At high trophic levels, when individual organisms are sparse, the concept of density becomes problematic, and IBMs are a natural tool. By contrast, for abundant and relatively homogeneously-distributed organisms the computational cost of representing individuals over large areas can be prohibitive. Many zooplankton populations, with complex life-histories and behaviours, and widespread but often patchy distributions, fall somewhere in the centre of this spectrum, thereby making the choice of modelling approach particularly problematic. Computational costs, and the large number of often un-measurable parameters, also mean that IBMs are not practical tools when moving away from single species zooplankton models to include coupling to higher and lower trophic levels. The workshop will focus on new methods and current challenges in the unification of individual level and population level approaches.

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W2 Workshop
Advances in genomic and molecular studies of zooplankton

Erica Goetze (University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA)
Ryuji Machida (Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, USA)
Katja Peijnenburg (Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

Invited Speaker:
Carol Eunmi Lee (Center of Rapid Evolution (CORE), University of Wisconsin, USA)

Molecular techniques have provided important insights into a number of aspects of zooplankton ecology. For example, genetic markers have been used to characterize the population structure of zooplankton species, to assess the phylogenetic relationships among extant taxa, and to test the specificity of their trophic niche. Phylogeographic studies have also added a historical perspective to understanding contemporary species distributions and demography. New zooplankton species are being discovered via molecular studies, and research in DNA Barcoding and community meta-genetics promises to greatly accelerate efforts to assess zooplankton diversity in a range of ocean environments. These diverse ongoing research lines rely on both conventional and emerging molecular techniques, and address long-standing questions in biological oceanography. The purpose of this workshop is to assess the current state-of-the-field of molecular and genomic studies of marine zooplankton, and to discuss key research areas that could be significantly advanced through creative application of existing and emerging molecular techniques. For example, we are interested in how molecular approaches could inform interdisciplinary studies of (1) the effect of changing climate on zooplankton physiology, distribution, or feeding ecology, (2) the role of biodiversity in ecosystem function, and (3) the role of mesozooplankton in structuring pelagic food webs through trophic ecology, among others. We envision a workshop with a number of short presentations from the variety of active research areas in zooplankton molecular ecology, followed by discussion focused on specific research questions.

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W3 Workshop
Updates and comparisons of zooplankton time series

David Mackas (Institute of Ocean Sciences, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
Martin Edwards (Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science, UK)

Invited Speaker:
Jenny Huggett (Department of Environmental Affairs, South Africa)

Zooplankton time series data are becoming not only more available, but also more widely used as diagnostics of change in marine ecosystems. Since the last International Zooplankton Symposium (2007), a lot has happened. Several new time series sampling programs (rich but brief in 2007) have become long enough to support broader analyses. SCOR Working Group 125 carried out comparisons among many of the earlier and longer time series. New visualization and statistical tools have been developed and applied. And several ocean regions have undergone very strong fluctuations of climate and zooplankton composition. For the 2011 workshop, part of the schedule will be contributed papers. We continue to be especially interested in between-regional teleconnections of decadal fluctuations, and in zooplankton time series that go beyond biomass to include information on variability of community composition, zoogeographic distributions, phenology, and/or physiological condition, and in papers that examine the role of zooplankton in marine ecosystem change and resilience. However, we will also reserve time for on-site demos, discussions, and synthesis efforts (so please bring your laptops, stocked with data tables and favorite analysis tools in addition to your polished presentations).

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W4 Workshop
Impacts of ocean acidification

So Kawaguchi (Australian Antarctic Division, Australia)
M. Brady Olson (Western Washington University, USA)

Invited speaker:
Brad Seibel (University of Rhode Island, USA)

Studies exploring the effects of ocean acidification on zooplankton are scarce, and with few exceptions are limited to assessing direct effects on zooplankton calcification. This focus on calcification, although vitally important, constrains our ability to predict what effects ocean acidification will have on zooplankton in a wider biological and ecological context. For example, what are other direct, but sub-acute zooplankton responses to ocean acidification? How might these responses alter zooplankton interactions with their predators and prey? What may be the effects on zooplankton-mediated nutrient cycling? Will the timing of transition between zooplankton life histories be altered by ocean acidification? How might secondary production change in response to acidification? Will the magnitude of these effects be altered by interactions with climate parameters synergistic with ocean acidification? This workshop solicits participation from plankton biologists and ecologists that wish to contribute to a dialog aimed at meeting these specific workshop goals: (1) report on current research and/or discoveries regarding zooplankton and ocean acidification, and (2) identify the critical research and information needed to provide a framework for better predicting zooplankton responses to ocean acidification.

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W5 Workshop
Automated visual plankton identification

Mark Benfield (LSU, USA)
Phil Culverhouse (Plymouth University, UK)

Invited Speaker
Cabell Davis
(Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA)

Advanced pattern recognition techniques are being applied to plankton identification to automate sample specimen counting to generic level. These tools, for example Zoo/Phyto Image and Zooprocess/Plankton Identify offer fast semi-automatic identification. They are free and can analyse the output from a flatbed scanner (Zoo/phyto Image), Zooscan and FlowCAM instruments as well as from digital cameras and other sources. This workshop will introduce the concepts and methods used, with some practical experience in using the tools. Automation can allow many thousands of specimens to be analysed daily. This workshop is a must for those wishing to embrace this new technology.

The workshop is split into 4 blocks. The first block will present an overview of current practices (manual and machine), together with the shortcomings of manual identification (if you have a laptop, you can take part in an identification experiment). We then introduce the basics of machine identification (i.e., extracting measurements from plankton images and using spreadsheets to show how images may be grouped into clusters), using previously prepared data from a Zooimage or a Zooscan machine. The third block will cover issues of machine calibration and using it in routine sample analysis. We will close with a look what is happening in leading laboratories around the world, and what the future holds.

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    November 5 , 2010
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    December 15 , 2010
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