In the region between King George Island and the South Orkney Islands 7 fish species from 6 families were found. The concentration of larvae at the edge of drifting ice was higher (2.55 ind. x 1000 m-3) than in the stations situated at a distance from the ice edge (0.93 ind. x 1000 m-3).
Deep−sea benthic Ostracoda (Crustacea) in Icelandic waters are poorly known. Here we report deep−sea ostracode assemblages from the multiple core (MUC) and the epibenthic sledge (EBS) samples collected from Icelandic waters by the first cruise of the IceAGE (Icelandic Marine Animals: Genetics and Ecology) project. Samples from shelf − −edge and lower−bathyal working areas are examined. The results show (1) distinct MUC and EBS faunas due to the large difference in mesh size of MUC and EBS; and (2) distinct shelf−edge and lower−bathyal ostracode faunas. Such remarkable faunal turnover from shelf to bathyal depths is similar to the faunal turnovers reported from depth transects in the adjacent regions of the western North Atlantic Ocean, the Greenland Sea, and the North Sea, but, at the same time, there are certain differences in the faunal composition between the Icelandic waters and these adjacent regions. In addition, we illustrate many Icelandic deep−sea ostracode species with high−resolution scanning electron microscopy and composite all−in−focus stereomicroscopic images for the first time. These results provide important basic information on deep−sea ostracode research and biogeography of this important region connecting North Atlantic proper and Nordic Seas.
Altogether 105 algal taxa were identified including 101 diatom species. Chaetoceros criophilus was dominant in the western part of the study area influenced by waters from the Bellingshausen Sea. Corethron criophilum was abundant in the Weddcll Sea water mass found to the east of 53.5°W meridian. Nitzschia cylindrus common in the ice-melt samples was dominant in only two net phytoplankton collections obtained at the ice-edge zone. Additional samples from Admiralty Bay, at King George Island revealed the dominance of Chaetoceros socialis and the presence of many tychoplankton species. Very few diatom cells were found in the open waters of the Bransfield Strait which combined with the presence of krill, suggested intensive grazing by herbivores. The unstable waters of the Weddell-Scotia Confluence area contained little phytoplankton except for a station dominated by Phaeocystis pouchetii. Greater cell densities were related to warm, lower salinity Weddell Sea water of summer modification found in the surface layer east from 49°W.