Abstract

The composition, abundance and distribution of euphausiids from the southern part of the Mexican Caribbean Sea (August 1986) were sampled during the ARCOMM I cruise on board the R/V “Justo Sierra” of UNAM. Sampling was done using a Bongo-net (0.5 mm mesh size) performing oblique hauls from 200 m to the surface at 28 stations. Of the total euphausiid numbers, the most abundant species was Stylocheiron carinatum (49%), followed by Euphausia americana (9.8%) and E. tenera with (7.8%). The highest total density and that of the three most abundant species occurred during the night sampling, and probably was related to vertical migration patterns. The Bray-Curtis index revealed three station assemblages, related to the day-night variations of the euphausiid community. Species were distributed mainly in the oceanic area, and were absent in the neritic zones. The local fauna shows a strong affinity for the euphausiid community of the Gulf of Mexico and other areas of the Caribbean Sea. Four species are considered to be new records for the western Caribbean Sea.
Keywords: euphausiids, caribbean sea, gulf of mexico, zooplankton