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Marine biodiversity in Japanese waters.

Fujikura K, Lindsay D, Kitazato H, Nishida S, Shirayama Y - PLoS ONE (2010)

Bottom Line: We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems.Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research.Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Biogeosciences, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan. fujikura@jamstec.go.jp

ABSTRACT
To understand marine biodiversity in Japanese waters, we have compiled information on the marine biota in Japanese waters, including the number of described species (species richness), the history of marine biology research in Japan, the state of knowledge, the number of endemic species, the number of identified but undescribed species, the number of known introduced species, and the number of taxonomic experts and identification guides, with consideration of the general ocean environmental background, such as the physical and geological settings. A total of 33,629 species have been reported to occur in Japanese waters. The state of knowledge was extremely variable, with taxa containing many inconspicuous, smaller species tending to be less well known. The total number of identified but undescribed species was at least 121,913. The total number of described species combined with the number of identified but undescribed species reached 155,542. This is the best estimate of the total number of species in Japanese waters and indicates that more than 70% of Japan's marine biodiversity remains un-described. The number of species reported as introduced into Japanese waters was 39. This is the first attempt to estimate species richness for all marine species in Japanese waters. Although its marine biota can be considered relatively well known, at least within the Asian-Pacific region, considering the vast number of different marine environments such as coral reefs, ocean trenches, ice-bound waters, methane seeps, and hydrothermal vents, much work remains to be done. We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems. Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research. Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans.

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Vertical structure of temperature and salinity between Sagami Bay on the Pacific side and the Sea of Japan.
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pone-0011836-g005: Vertical structure of temperature and salinity between Sagami Bay on the Pacific side and the Sea of Japan.

Mentions: Generally, the distribution of sea surface water temperature in Japan follows the seasons and is characterized by spring, summer, autumn, and winter patterns. Figure 4 shows the sea surface temperature patterns for each season; summer is warmest and winter is coldest. The vertical temperature profile in the Sea of Japan differs sharply from that on the Pacific side (Figure 5). Temperatures in the Sea of Japan are much lower than in the Pacific. Climate regimes in Japanese waters are classified into six categories between the subboreal and tropical zones (Figure 3). The northernmost regions, such as the Sea of Okhotsk and the Pacific east of Hokkaido belong to the subboreal zone, while the southernmost areas such as the Ryukyu and Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin) island regions belong to the tropical zone. On a large scale, biogeographically, Japan belongs to the Indo-western Pacific regime.


Marine biodiversity in Japanese waters.

Fujikura K, Lindsay D, Kitazato H, Nishida S, Shirayama Y - PLoS ONE (2010)

Vertical structure of temperature and salinity between Sagami Bay on the Pacific side and the Sea of Japan.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2914005&req=5

pone-0011836-g005: Vertical structure of temperature and salinity between Sagami Bay on the Pacific side and the Sea of Japan.
Mentions: Generally, the distribution of sea surface water temperature in Japan follows the seasons and is characterized by spring, summer, autumn, and winter patterns. Figure 4 shows the sea surface temperature patterns for each season; summer is warmest and winter is coldest. The vertical temperature profile in the Sea of Japan differs sharply from that on the Pacific side (Figure 5). Temperatures in the Sea of Japan are much lower than in the Pacific. Climate regimes in Japanese waters are classified into six categories between the subboreal and tropical zones (Figure 3). The northernmost regions, such as the Sea of Okhotsk and the Pacific east of Hokkaido belong to the subboreal zone, while the southernmost areas such as the Ryukyu and Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin) island regions belong to the tropical zone. On a large scale, biogeographically, Japan belongs to the Indo-western Pacific regime.

Bottom Line: We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems.Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research.Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Biogeosciences, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan. fujikura@jamstec.go.jp

ABSTRACT
To understand marine biodiversity in Japanese waters, we have compiled information on the marine biota in Japanese waters, including the number of described species (species richness), the history of marine biology research in Japan, the state of knowledge, the number of endemic species, the number of identified but undescribed species, the number of known introduced species, and the number of taxonomic experts and identification guides, with consideration of the general ocean environmental background, such as the physical and geological settings. A total of 33,629 species have been reported to occur in Japanese waters. The state of knowledge was extremely variable, with taxa containing many inconspicuous, smaller species tending to be less well known. The total number of identified but undescribed species was at least 121,913. The total number of described species combined with the number of identified but undescribed species reached 155,542. This is the best estimate of the total number of species in Japanese waters and indicates that more than 70% of Japan's marine biodiversity remains un-described. The number of species reported as introduced into Japanese waters was 39. This is the first attempt to estimate species richness for all marine species in Japanese waters. Although its marine biota can be considered relatively well known, at least within the Asian-Pacific region, considering the vast number of different marine environments such as coral reefs, ocean trenches, ice-bound waters, methane seeps, and hydrothermal vents, much work remains to be done. We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems. Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research. Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans.

Show MeSH