Fauna of the North Sea

The most common fish of the North Sea

The organic world of the North Sea is characteristic of the boreal North Atlantic zoogeographic region. The fauna is very similar to the Barents Sea and the Norwegian Sea, but it is more diverse due to warm-water forms; some Arctic species (up to 20% in some groups) penetrate here. In the northern sea there are more than 100 species of fish. Here are found: European plaice, Halibut, Cod, Haddock, Pollachius virens, Mackerel, Herring, Sprats, Shrimp, some Batoidea and Shark. 

Zooplankton of the North Sea

Crustacea (about 600 species), Worm, Mollusca (about 300 each), coelenterata are especially numerous. The littoral is characterized by large settlements of Mytilus, Balanomorpha, Blow lugworm, Amphipoda; deeper - many large mollusks (Modiola, Scallop, Ostreidae): benthos biomass averages 350 g/m2. In 1912, Chinese mitten crab was introduced into the North Sea by ships, which multiplied greatly and became a pest, as its burrows destroy the shores. 

What mammals live in the North Sea?

Pinnipeds (Pusa, Beluga whale, Harbour porpoise, Grey seal), Dolphins and Orcas enter the North Sea in search of food behind numerous schools of fish. Occasional visits are made by minke and bowhead whales. 

What sharks are found in the North Sea?

Sharks in the North Sea include the porbeagle, spiny dogfish, catshark and squatina squatina. The basking shark occasionally enters the sea to feed on zooplankton, and the Greenland shark has also been seen. There are reports of catching the bluntnose sixgill shark. In summer, the sea is sometimes visited by hammerhead sharks and blue sharks. 

Unusual aquatic organisms of the North Sea

In the North Sea there are unusual crabs - Balanomorpha. They look like crayfish, but they are atypical. Adults prefer to live by simply attaching themselves to other larger objects. Their body is protected by a kind of house, very strong and durable. For a long time these animals were considered to be molluscs. 



Amphipoda

Amphipoda

Division Foot crabs, subclass Higher crabs (Malacostraca). The body length is usually 1-2 cm. The bo..

Angler

Angler

Latin nameLophius piscatoriusOther namesEuropean angler, common monkfish.IdentificationThe body is n..

Atlantic cod

Atlantic cod

Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) is a marine fish of the cod family. Body length up to 170 cm, weight up ..

Atlantic herring

Atlantic herring

Latin Name           Clupea harengus harengus (Linnaeus, 1758). Titl..

Bluntnose sixgill shark

Bluntnose sixgill shark

Latin nameHexanchus griseusOther names–°ow sharkIdentificationThe bluntnose sixgill shark has a dense..

Common ling

Common ling

Latin nameMolva molvaOther namesWhite lin, lingIdentificationThese fish have an elongated body and a..

Common sole

Common sole

Latin nameSolea soleaOther namesDover sole, black sole.IdentificationThe genus and species names com..

Dogfish, Spiny

Dogfish, Spiny

Latin name Squalus acanthias Other names Dogfish, dog shark, grayfish, Pacific grayfish, Pacific ..

European Anchovy

European Anchovy

Latin nameEngraulis encrasicolusOther namesEngraulis encrasicolusIdentificationBody elongated, low, ..

European plaice

European plaice

Latin namePleuronectes platessaOther namesPlaiceIdentificationThe adult body shape is oval, with the..

Greenland Shark

Greenland Shark

Latin nameSomniosus microcephalusOther namesGurry shark, grey shark, Somniosus microcephalusIdentifi..

Haddock

Haddock

Latin name Melanogrammus aeglefinus Other names Haddie, scrod; French: eglefin; Italian: asinello..

Halibut, Atlantic

Halibut, Atlantic

Latin name Hippoglossus hippoglossus Other names Common halibut, giant halibut, right-eyed flound..

Herring, Atlantic

Herring, Atlantic

Latin name Clupea harengus Other names Herring; Danish: Atlantisk sild, sild; Finnish: silakka, s..

Lesser weever

Lesser weever

Latin nameEchiichthys viperaOther namesLesser weeverfish, adder pike, black fin, little weever.Ident..

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