The ichthyoplankton study contributes to several areas of biology and fisheries science. Larval fish composition and abundance are strongly influenced by physical processes. On the Brazilian coast, studies focusing long term environmental factors relating to the distribution and abundance of ichthyoplankton are nonexistent. Therefore, the main objective of this project is to evaluate inter-decadal fluctuations in the distribution and abundance of larvae and eggs of Engraulis anchoita (Clupeiformes, Engraulidae) at Brazilian Southeast Continental Shelf, verifying if there were changes in the abundance and distribution of E. anchoita and that such fluctuations may be related to climate variability (e.g. El Niño) or to the increased fishing pressure on predators of this species (e.g. hake). In addition, using the spatial analysis of the anchovy eggs over the years, we intend to infer spawning sites and if those sites have changed. To achieve these objectives will be analyzed samples from oceanographic cruises performed from 1970 to 2010 in the Brazilian Southeast Continental Shelf. The samples are properly stored and cataloged in the "Marine Biological Collection Prof. EF Nonato "- ColBIO - IOUSP and are available for analysis according to the requirements of the project.
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