Isfjorden Marine Observatory Svalbard (IMOS)

Last week ARCTOS members Janne Søreide (UNIS) and Malin Daase (UiT) came together with their Russian colleagues in Montenegro to work on plankton data from Isfjorden collected within the IMOS project. Isfjorden Marine Observatory Svalbard (IMOS), funded by NFR and led by Janne Søreide, is a collaboration between ARCTOS members at UNIS and the Murmansk Marine Biological Insitute (MMBI), the Shirshow Institute for Oceanology in Moscow as well as the Institute for Oceanography (IOPAS) in Poland and the Nansen Centre in Bergen. IMOS aims at establishing a long term plankton time series in Isfjorden, the largest fjord system in Svalbard. Within IMOS a standardized sample and analyses protocol has been established and data will be stored using the Greenseas database in collaboration with the Nansen Centre.  The presences of permanent research infrastructure in Isfjorden (the Marine Research Station in Barentsburg, the University Centre in Longyearbyen) and the frequency of visiting research vessel makes regular, year round sampling feasible – a prerequisites for maintaining long time series. Almost 20 years of plankton data exist already from Isfjorden and over the last 3 years regular seasonal sampling has been conduct in Isfjorden in collaboration between MMBI and UNIS. During the four day workshop we got started on synthesizing these historical and new protist and zooplankton data in order to disentangle natural seasonal variability from persistent changes in plankton communities in Isfjorden.