baltic sea animals

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baltic sea animals

In a following step, the relationships between changes in the inputs of nutrients to the Baltic Sea and the core indicators are established by physical-biogeochemical modelling. One person or activity alone does not exert much pressure on the environment, but when scaled up the impact of many humans and their activities may have a considerable impact on marine species, and the different impacts act together on the environment. The catch includes herring, cod, sprats, eel, salmon, and shellfish. Core indicators with associated threshold values representing good status with regard to eutrophication are established primarily from monitoring data, which is interpreted through statistical analysis. In times of low cod quotas and high flatfish abundances, flatfishes can become the key target species, especially dab (Limanda limanda) and flounder (Platichthys flesus). The assessment is organised according to Pressures on the environment (Chapter 4) and the status of Biodiversity and food webs (Chapter 5). The table (right) shows corresponding assessment results for the core indicators, with green denoting ‘good’ status and red ‘not good’ statuses. Thus, the foodstuff threshold values do not cover all combinations of matrices and contaminants relevant for an environmental assessment of the marine environment. Unlike all its close relatives of the other hammerheads, it is tolerant of colder waters. Additionally, physical condition is impaired, growth is reduced and mortality increases. All assessed grey seals belong the same management unit (Baltic Sea), but the indicator grey seal distribution is assessed separately for two areas: West of Bornholm, as well as east and north of Bornholm. On the other hand, shipping traffic causes a lot of noise and pollution of the water and building development restricts the habitat. The Kattegat-Belt Sea-Western Baltic sub-population is also assessed as threatened (HELCOM 2013b), albeit with the lower threat status ‘vulnerable’. In other seas it lives in the intertidal zone, but in the Baltic Sea it lives continuously submerged. One death has already been reported. A main concern is that the recruitment of eel has decreased sharply since the 1980s (Moriarty and Dekker 1997, ICES 2016c). Level 3 separates the sub-basins also into coastal and offshore areas, and level 4 uses a finer subdivision of coastal areas in line with national management practices such as water bodies as designated under the EU Water Framework Directive. Over 30 indicators form the basis for the status assessment, reflecting key aspects of the health of the Baltic Sea ecosystem and providing a quantitative basis for status evaluation and management agreements. They can vary greatly in size, specimens up to 1.70 meters long have been discovered, but this is rather rare, they usually grow to about 1 meter long and weigh about 1.6 kg. Marine fish include herring, cod, hake, plaice, sculpin, shorthorn, stickleback, flounder, and turbot. These events caused intensified oxygen dynamics in the Arkona Basin, Bornholm Basin, and Eastern Gotland Basin, and the northern Baltic Proper was affected up to the end of 2016. Scientists or authorities, on the other hand, know what should be done, but they might lack enough resources. Additional important pressures affecting seagrass meadows are for example oxygen depletion and increased sulphide concentrations, direct and indirect effects of fisheries, and acidification (Figure B.6.1.1). Population trends and abundance of seals: In order to have good status the population size needs to be above the limit reference level (10 000 individuals), and the species specific growth rate needs to be achieved. Going beneath the surface of the Stockholm Archipelago with WWF to find out how plastics and micro plastics are effecting the Baltic Sea. Figure B.6.1.1. In the exhibition, however, you will not only learn more about their biology, you will also hear that researchers … Counted number of harbour seals during 2002-2016, based on monitoring at haul-outs during moulting time. Due to the lack of indicator, harbour porpoise was not included in the integrated assessment. The HELCOM Integrated assessment tools for eutrophication, hazardous substances and biodiversity have been advanced for this assessment, and will be used and developed further in the future. Four marine mammal species are resident in the Baltic Sea: the grey seal, harbour seal, ringed seal and the harbour porpoise. A rough estimate indicated that between 100,000 and 200,000 waterbirds drown annually in the North and Baltic Seas, of which the great majority drowns in the Baltic Sea (Žydelis et al. Out of the four species of marine mammals in the Baltic Sea, grey seal (Halichoerus grypus) occurs in the whole region, whereas harbour seal (Phoca vitulina) is restricted to the southwestern Baltic Sea and the Kattegat, and ringed seal (Pusa hispida) to the eastern and northern Baltic Sea. The spiny dogfish is a smaller shark in the Baltic Sea and weighs up to 10 kg. However, there is still no reason for concern, because even though there are many more sharks in the Baltic Sea than previously thought, these animals come too seldom in contact with people, so that there is basically no need to be afraid of sharks in the Baltic Sea. The Baltic Sea Action Plan and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive have similar goals and objectives, and thus, progress towards achieving the regional aim can be assessed using the same indicators and tools. Which shark species are dangerous for humans? For the Southwestern Baltic population (top right), the annual growth rate is positive but still below the threshold value. Freshwater species include pike, roach, perch, and whitefish. The change in recreation values stems from the predicted change in the expected number of trips to the Baltic Sea when the perceived environmental conditions change, based on econometric modelling. The status of pressures, species and habitats is influenced by multiple connections to human activities. The Baltic Sea also encompasses the Bay of Bothnia, the Gulf of Bothnia, the Gulf of Riga, the Bay of Gdansk, and the Gulf of Finland. The results represent the value of reaching good eutrophication status in the Baltic Sea, based on citizens’ stated willingness to pay, in a survey for achieving the target status. However, no threshold values are defined for physical loss and disturbance and thus no value judgement of status is placed on the results. Thus, only the estimates for Finland, Lithuania and Sweden are based on original valuation studies and data collection, and the estimates for Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Poland and Russia are based on value transfer. These relationships differ across sub-basins because of differences in water circulation, ecosystem characteristics, and inputs, for example. Core indicators with associated threshold values representing good status with regard to eutrophication are established primarily from monitoring data, which are interpreted through statistical analysis. An inflow of moderate intensity also occurred between 14 and 22 November 2015. It is sensitive to the quality of the surrounding water and hence eutrophication or changes in the food web can be damaging. Status is shown in five categories based on the integrated biological quality ratios (BQR). The population is estimated at around 40,500 animals (95 % confidence range 25,614 to 65,041) using a visual line transect survey (Viquerat et al. The losses of recreation values due to the deterioration of the marine environment are estimated to be 1–2 billion euros annually (see Figure B3.3.1). It is important to acknowledge the related uncertainties when using such value estimates. east longitude. The low proportion of harbour porpoises reaching sexual maturity in the Baltic Sea supports the need to reduce the magnitude of bycatches (Kesselring et al. These effects decrease the environmental benefits from the Baltic Sea, both in terms of use-related values and non-use values. These areas correspond approximately to the area which encompasses 30 % of the population, and the limit is often used to define high-density areas. These two factors limit many species of animals and plants to a relatively narrow region of Baltic Sea. 2015). The effects can also be hierarchically dependent. Economic and social analysis of the use of marine waters examines the economic contribution to regional and national economies from using marine waters in their current state. The value for the most sensitive of these matrices and protection goals is used. (2014). Environmental quality standard values in the field of water policy are set in directive 2008/105/EC of the European commission, amended in 2013 (EC 2008, 2013). Monitoring of hazardous substances takes place in three types of matrices, namely biota, water and sediment. The time frame in the study is somewhat longer than in current policies, as it is set to the year 2050. Counted number of ringed seals during 2002-2016, based on monitoring at haul-outs during moulting time. Drift nets have been fully banned in the Baltic Sea since 2008. Additional important pressures affecting seagrass meadows are for example oxygen depletion and increased sulphide concentrations, direct and indirect effects of fisheries, and acidification (Figure B.6.1.1). Incidental by-catch of mammals in fishing gear, Box 5.4.1. After one or two years they grow into so called smolt and migrate to the Baltic Sea, where they mature into adult salmon and remain for a few years. Values for sediments are not published there, but can be found in the EQS substance dossiers. The defence mechanisms that are induced in the mussels are energetically costly for them, and alter heart rate and respiration. Background assessment criteria (BAC) have been developed to illustrate progress towards background concentrations of naturally occurring substances, and close to zero concentrations for man-made substances. 2015), and was followed by smaller events. The assessment is based on currently available core indicators. Public Vote; Best Map; Swiss Future Farm Special; Youngtimer Special; Contest Results; LOGIN. Figure B33.1. The HELCOM core indicators cover both biodiversity and human induced pressures and impacts on the Baltic Sea ecosystem. The estimates are based on information about travel costs and the number of recreational visits people make to the Baltic Sea and its coast. The status of seals was assessed within population-specific management units, which are jointly agreed on in HELCOM. The map reflects the BQR for the indicator furthest away from good status in each assessment unit (See Figures 5.4.2, 5.4.4, and 5.4.6 for corresponding results by species). "The seals have learned to pull the meat off the bones of the herrings in the gillnet," … The total number of ringed seals in the Bothnian Bay is estimated at more than 20,000. The Baltic Sea is located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. The Baltic Sea Impact Index uses sensitivity scores based on a regional scale expert survey in order to cover a broad range of topics in a similar way and makes use of existing expertise on the different ways in which pressures may impact the environment. Geological surveys show that before the Pleistocene, instead of the Baltic Sea, there was a wide plain around a great river that paleontologists call the Eridanos. The benefits that are lost if the Baltic Sea does not reach a good environmental status are called the cost of degradation. The dead zones are due largely to the Baltic’s limited circulation and strong layering of water, which stop oxygen from replenishing bottom waters. The number of grey seals in their core area of moulting distribution (covering the Bothnian Sea, Archipelago Sea and Western Estonian waters), is counted at over 25,000 in 2016. Value estimates are in purchasing power parity adjusted 2015 euros. First, a series of smaller inflow events occurred in November 2013, December 2013, and March 2014. Further improving our understanding of the economic contribution from marine activities will require harmonised data across all coastal countries, reporting data separately for different sea areas (Baltic and North Seas), and differentiating between land activities, freshwater activities and marine activities, particularly for tourism. Furthermore, the Baltic Sea is a resource for fish and amber, which can be found along the Russian shore around Kaliningrad. Indicators used in Chapter 5 of this report (‘Biodiversity’), relating to the biodiversity segment of the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) and descriptor 1 of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). The aggregated layers were also compared with information on the spatial distribution of broad benthic habitat types, in order to estimate the potentially lost and disturbed areas of benthic habitats For more information, see the thematic assessment; HELCOM (2018E). This is why it feels comfortable in the relatively cool waters of the Baltic Sea and why there are also larger populations. 2016). We intend to create a dialog between people and raise their desire to take action and help secure continued biodiversity for the Baltic Sea. When estimating, the focus can be either on degradation themes, such as eutrophication, or ecosystem services, such as recreation. Indicators used in Chapter 4 of this report (‘Pressures’), and their relation to the segments of the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) and the descriptors of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). Demersal trawling occurs in some coastal areas, but is forbidden in the coastal zone in many of the Baltic countries. The status of pressures, species and habitats is influenced by multiple connections to human activities. In total, about 400 tons of sharks are caught in the Baltic Sea every year. The term ‘microlitter’ is used for litter particles smaller than 5 mm, but they can also be much smaller (GESAMP 2015). The assessment of cumulative impacts, using the Baltic Sea Impact Index, has improved considerably since its first regional use (HELCOM 2010a). The required minimum protection has not yet been achieved, and although eel management plans are being established on a national level, no joint management and assessment actions have been achieved. The EU Marine Strategy Framework descriptor related to the removal of commercial fish and shellfish can be associated with the provisions of 2013 HELCOM Declaration on ecosystem-based fisheries, while hydrological conditions cannot be directly assigned to any segment of the Baltic Sea Action Plan. The assessment is based on the one-out-all-out approach, which means that the indicator reflecting the worst status determines the status of the species. Besides sharks in the Baltic Sea, there is also a lot to see in this beautiful region. 96 spatial data sets representing human activities, pressures and ecosystems components have been produced, and all the results are available for further use, including in maritime spatial planning. The dredging effects caused by fisheries activities may lead to decline of blue mussel by removal of species and abrasion of the seabed. Some of these monetary benefits have been assessed in a stated preference choice experiment study in Sweden, Finland and Lithuania in 2011, which elicited citizens’ willingness to pay for improvements with regard to aspects related to marine biodiversity (Kosenius and Ollikainen 2015). There are signs of increasing amounts of hydrogen sulphide in the Eastern and Northern Gotland Basins close to the bottom. Twitter. Some characteristic Baltic Sea taxa were grouped to genus or even higher taxonomic level (Diastylis, Harmothoe, Exogone, Hydrobiidae, Idotea, Nephtys, Ophiura, Phoronis, Polydora, Diptera) to overcome taxonomic inconsistencies. They can be found in almost all seas. A major study conducted in 2011–2013 using passive acoustic recorders supports the presence of two sub-populations of harbour porpoise in the Baltic Sea: one mainly occurring east of Bornholm in the Baltic Proper and the other one occurring in southern Kattegat, the Belt Sea, and the southwestern parts of the Baltic Sea (Anonymous 2016; Figure 5.4.8). The overall status of marine mammal species is unfavourable. Methods used in the commercial fishery, Box 4.2.1 Threshold values for assessing hazardous substances, Box 1.1 Oxygen conditions in the deeper Baltic Sea, Box 3.3 Example of economic and social analyses: recreation, Economic benefits from protection & use of the sea, STATE OF THE BALTIC SEA – Second HELCOM holistic assessment 2011–2016, Cumulative impacts on the marine environment, Distribution in time and space of loud low- and mid-frequency impulsive sound, Number of drowned mammals and waterbirds in fishing gear, Kiel Bay, Bay of Mecklenburg, Bornholm Basin, Arkona Basin, Eastern Gotland Basin, Western Gotland Basins, Gulf of Riga, Gdansk Basin, Thematic assessment of biodiversity 2011–2016 – Pre-publication version (3 MB), Chapter 4.6 Species removal by fishing and hunting, Chapter 3 Human welfare and ecosystem health, chapter 5, section 5.6 Biodiversity summary and food web aspects, Chapter 5 of this report (‘Biodiversity’), Chapter 6 Cumulative impacts on the marine environment, Chapter 3.1 Activities, pressures, and welfare changes, State of the soft-bottom macrofauna community, Coastal waters: indicators developed under the Water Framework Directive, Baltic Sea undisturbed by hazardous substances, Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their metabolites, Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dioxins and furans, White-tailed sea eagle productivity (coastal waters only), Environmentally friendly maritime activities, Trends in arrival of new non-indigenous species. Thus, it is possible to assess both the current economic value of recreation, and the losses in recreation values due to the deterioration of the marine environment. The results may differ from those presented here, as the Habitats Directive assessment is bounded by national borders, and the HELCOM assessment is carried out based on populations or sub-populations equivalent to regionally agreed management units. Microlitter has been detected inside species in all levels of the food web and may be found in all parts of the environment; on the water surface, within the water column, on the seafloor and shore (Lassen et al. Linking economic indicators, for example ‘value added’, with the ecosystem services approach, we can explore how human activities benefit from and impact on the environment in a more comprehensive way. The major Baltic inflow of December 2014 caused the Bornholm Basin to become fully ventilated. Salmon (Salmo salar) is caught by long lines during its feeding stage in the sea, or by trap nets or gill nets during their spawning run, and salmon fishing is also sometimes allowed in river mouths. Photo: Nicklas Wijkmark. 2014). Although the population development can be followed reliably, it should be noted that not all seal individuals are encountered during monitoring. Deterioration of marine biodiversity may result in welfare losses to society (see also Box 3.2 about losses in human well-being from the degradation of the marine environment, in Chapter 3.1 Activities, pressures, and welfare changes). In 2007, the EU Eel Regulation implemented a Distributed Control System, setting a common restoration target at the international level, and obliging EU countries to implement the required protective measures, with the aim of ensuring 40% of mature eels make it to the sea, in relation to estimated pristine conditions. Source: Kosenius and Ollikainen (2015). 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