ClimateFish : Abundance of selected coastal fish species as candidate indicators of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea

The ClimateFish database collates abundance data of 15 fish species proposed as candidate indicators of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea. An initial group of eight Mediterranean indigenous species (Epinephelus marginatus, Thalassoma pavo, Sparisoma cretense, Coris julis, Sarpa salpa, Serranus scriba, Serranus cabrilla and Caranx crysos) with wide distribution, responsiveness to temperature conditions and easy identification were selected by a network of Mediterranean scientists joined under the CIESM programme ‘Tropical Signals’ (https://www.ciesm.org/marine/programs/tropicalization.htm; Azzurro et al. 2010). Soon after, and thanks to the discussion with other expert groups and projects, C. crysos was no longer considered, and Lessepsian fishes (Red Sea species entering the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal) were included, namely: Fistularia commersonii, Siganus luridus, Siganus rivulatus, Pterois miles, Stephanolopis diaspros, Parupeneus forskali, Pempheris rhomboidea and Torquigener flavimaculosus. Considering the trend of increase of these species in the Mediterranean Sea (Golani et al. 2021) and their projected distribution according to climate change scenarios (D’Amen and Azzurro, 2020), more data on these tropical invaders are expected to come in the future implementation of the study.

Data were collected according to a simplified visual census methodology (Garrabou et al. 2019) along standard transects of five minutes performed at a constant speed of 10m/min, corresponding approximately to an area of 50x5m. Four different depth layers were surveyed:  0-3m, 5-10 m, 11-20 m, 21-30 m. So far, the ClimateFish database includes fish counts collected along 3142 transects carried out in seven Mediterranean countries between 2009 and 2021, for a total number of 101'771 observed individuals belonging to the 15 fish species.

Data were collected by a large team of researchers which joined in a common monitoring strategy supported by different international projects, which are acknowledged below. This database, when associated with climate data, offers new opportunities to investigate spatio-temporal effects of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea and test the effectiveness of each species as a possible climate change indicator.

 

Contacts: ernesto.azzurro(at)cnr.it

 

References:

Azzurro E., Maynou F., Moschella P. (2010). A simplified visual census methodology to detect variability trends of coastal mediterranean fishes under climate change scenarios. Rapp. Comm. int. Mer Médit., 39.

D’Amen, M. and Azzurro, E. (2020). Lessepsian fish invasion in Mediterranean marine protected areas: a risk assessment under climate change scenarios. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 77(1), pp.388-397.

Garrabou, J., Bensoussan, N., Azzurro, E. (2019). Monitoring climate-related responses in Mediterranean marine protected areas and beyond: five standard protocols.

Golani D.,  Azzurro E.,  Dulčić J.,  Massutí E., Orsi-Relini L.  (2021).  Atlas of Exotic Fishes in the Mediterranean Sea.  2nd edition  [F. Briand, Ed.]  365 pages.  CIESM Publishers, Paris, Monaco. ISBN number  978-92-990003-5-9 

 

The ClimateFish database collates abundance data of 15 fish species proposed as candidate indicators of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea. An initial group of eight Mediterranean indigenous species (Epinephelus marginatus, Thalassoma pavo, Sparisoma cretense, Coris julis, Sarpa salpa, Serranus scriba, Serranus cabrilla and Caranx crysos) with wide distribution, responsiveness to temperature conditions and easy identification were selected by a network of Mediterranean scientists joined under the CIESM programme ‘Tropical Signals’ (https://www.ciesm.org/marine/programs/tropicalization.htm; Azzurro et al. 2010). Soon after, and thanks to the discussion with other expert groups and projects, C. crysos was no longer considered, and Lessepsian fishes (Red Sea species entering the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal) were included, namely: Fistularia commersonii, Siganus luridus, Siganus rivulatus, Pterois miles, Stephanolopis diaspros, Parupeneus forskali, Pempheris rhomboidea and Torquigener flavimaculosus. Considering the trend of increase of these species in the Mediterranean Sea (Golani et al. 2021) and their projected distribution according to climate change scenarios (D’Amen and Azzurro, 2020), more data on these tropical invaders are expected to come in the future implementation of the study.

Data were collected according to a simplified visual census methodology (Garrabou et al. 2019) along standard transects of five minutes performed at a constant speed of 10m/min, corresponding approximately to an area of 50x5m. Four different depth layers were surveyed:  0-3m, 5-10 m, 11-20 m, 21-30 m. So far, the ClimateFish database includes fish counts collected along 3142 transects carried out in seven Mediterranean countries between 2009 and 2021, for a total number of 101'771 observed individuals belonging to the 15 fish species.

Data were collected by a large team of researchers which joined in a common monitoring strategy supported by different international projects, which are acknowledged below. This database, when associated with climate data, offers new opportunities to investigate spatio-temporal effects of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea and test the effectiveness of each species as a possible climate change indicator.

 

Contacts: ernesto.azzurro(at)cnr.it

 

References:

Azzurro E., Maynou F., Moschella P. (2010). A simplified visual census methodology to detect variability trends of coastal mediterranean fishes under climate change scenarios. Rapp. Comm. int. Mer Médit., 39.

D’Amen, M. and Azzurro, E. (2020). Lessepsian fish invasion in Mediterranean marine protected areas: a risk assessment under climate change scenarios. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 77(1), pp.388-397.

Garrabou, J., Bensoussan, N., Azzurro, E. (2019). Monitoring climate-related responses in Mediterranean marine protected areas and beyond: five standard protocols.

Golani D.,  Azzurro E.,  Dulčić J.,  Massutí E., Orsi-Relini L.  (2021).  Atlas of Exotic Fishes in the Mediterranean Sea.  2nd edition  [F. Briand, Ed.]  365 pages.  CIESM Publishers, Paris, Monaco. ISBN number  978-92-990003-5-9 

 

Disciplines

Biological oceanography

Keywords

Mediterranean Sea, climate change indicators, climate warming, visual census, species abundance, species distribution, sea water temperature, global warming, biological invasions, shift species distribution, time series, collaborative monitoring, meridionalization, tropicalization, poleward shifts

Location

46.97802N, 28.25043S, 39.81122E, -9.74039W

Data

FileSizeFormatProcessingAccess
ClimateFish database: Abundance of coastal fish species
457 KoCSVQuality controlled data
Description of the fields of the ClimateFish database
2 KoCSV
A README file: txt machine-readable file describing the parameters of the database
11 KoTEXT
How to cite
Azzurro Ernesto, Ballerini Tosca, Antoniadou Chryssanthi, Aversa Giulia Domizia, Ben Souissi Jamila, Blašković Andrea, Cappanera Valentina, Chiappi Marina, Cinti Maria-Francesca, Colloca Francesco, Cvitković Ivan, D'Amen Manuela, Despalatović Marija, Di Franco Antonio, Dimitriadis Charalampos, Dragičević Branko, Fanelli Emanuela, Figuerola Ferrando Laura, Fortibuoni Tomaso, Franzitta Giulio, Garrabou Joaquim, Geloso Tatiana, Ghanem Raouia, Gori Andrea, Hervat Martina, Izquierdo-Muñoz Andres, Linares Prat Cristina, La Mesa Gabriele, Merotto Lorenzo, Micallef Reno, Miliou Anastasia, Minelli Annalisa, Moschella Paula, Pannacciulli Federica, Panzalis Pieraugusto, Pavičić Mišo, Petrou Antonis, Ramos-Esplá Alfonso A., Saponari Luca, Scarcella Giuseppe, Spoto Marco, Stagličić Nika, Vrdoljak Dario, Vouriot PAULINE, Weitzmann Boris, Schembri Patrick Joseph (2022). ClimateFish : Abundance of selected coastal fish species as candidate indicators of climate change in the Mediterranean Sea. SEANOE. https://doi.org/10.17882/86784
In addition to properly cite this dataset, it would be appreciated that the following work(s) be cited too, when using this dataset in a publication :
Azzurro Ernesto, Ballerini Tosca, Antoniadou Chryssanthi, Aversa Giulia Domizia, Souissi Jamila Ben, Blašković Andrea, Cappanera Valentina, Chiappi Marina, Cinti Maria-Francesca, Colloca Francesco, Cvitković Ivan, D’Amen Manuela, Despalatović Marija, Di Franco Antonio, Dimitriadis Charalampos, Dragičević Branko, Fanelli Emanuela, Figuerola Laura, Fortibuoni Tomaso, Franzitta Giulio, Garrabou Joaquim, Geloso Tatiana, Ghanem Raouia, Gori Andrea, Hervat Martina, Izquierdo-Muñoz Andres, Linares Cristina, La Mesa Gabriele, Merotto Lorenzo, Micallef Reno, Miliou Anastasia, Minelli Annalisa, Moschella Paula, Pannacciulli Federica, Panzalis Pieraugusto, Pavičić Mišo, Petrou Antonis, Ramos-Esplá Alfonso A., Saponari Luca, Scarcella Giuseppe, Spoto Marco, Stagličić Nika, Vrdoljak Dario, Weitzmann Boris, Schembri Patrick Joseph (2022). ClimateFish: A Collaborative Database to Track the Abundance of Selected Coastal Fish Species as Candidate Indicators of Climate Change in the Mediterranean Sea. Frontiers in Marine Science, 9. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2022.910887

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