What is it about?

Arctic cod and Polar cod are two species found throughout the Arctic ocean. Here we provide a critical summary of current literature on the movements of these species and in the context of potential climate change impacts. Advances in technology and innovative techniques are rapidly increasing our capacity to understand the movements of animals underwater. This article also identifies some of the most valuable directions we could take for future research to fill the major gaps in information and better understand the current and potential future impacts of climate change.

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Why is it important?

Movement is a primary means that mobile animals use to respond to environmental change. So understanding how and where different species are moving, and what drives variation in these movements, is critical for determining potential impacts from stressors such as climate change. The two species of cod in this literature synthesis are often central in food webs throughout the Arctic and have been found to be increasingly impacted by climate change and the spread of other fish species further north. This summary and critical assessment of current literature is crucial for understanding the scope of what we currently know and identify priority areas for future work to better understand the ecology of these fish species and the impacts of climate change on them and Arctic marine food webs.


This is the first of a three part paper series summarising the current literature on the movements of different cod species in the Arctic and in the context of climate change. Theses reviews are primarily focussed on literature in the English language that is available in online. There has been a recent surge in research effort and interest to understand the movements of cod species, particularly in the Arctic where climate change effects are taking place much faster than anywhere else in the world. So understanding the most crucial gaps to fill is very important for knowing what research should be prioritised, where to direct funds and what policies to put in place.

Dr. Harri Pettitt-Wade
Bedford Institute of Oceanography

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Cod movement ecology in a warming world: Circumpolar arctic gadids, Fish and Fisheries, February 2021, Wiley,
DOI: 10.1111/faf.12536.
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