Ocean climate, environmental and biological conditions vary on several spatio-temporal scales. Besides climate change associated with anthropogenic activity, there is growing evidence of a natural global multi-decadal climate signal in the ocean-atmosphere-biosphere climate system. The spatio-temporal evolution of this signal is thus analyzed during the 20th century and compared to the variability of small-pelagic fish landings. It is argued that the low-frequency global ocean environment and plankton ecosystems must be modified such that small-pelagic populations vary accordingly. A small-pelagic global index or fishing `regime indicator series' RIS) i.e. a small-pelagic abundance indicator) is used. RIS is derived from fish landings data in the four main fishing areas in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Global RIS changes phase from positive to negative values) when SST multi-decadal anomalies are out-of-phase between the eastern Pacific and southern Atlantic. RIS also displays maxima during the mid-30s to early-40s and the late-70s to early-80s when the multi-decadal signal was approximately changing phases Tourre and White 2006 Geophys. Res. Lett. 33 L06716). It is recognized that other factors may modulate fish stocks, including anthropogenic predation. Nevertheless it is proposed that variable climate and environment, and the low-frequency `global synchrony' of small-pelagic landings Schwartzlose et al 1999 S. Afr. J. Mar. Sci. 21 289-347), could be associated with the multi-decadal changes in global ocean climate conditions.
269MKTimes Cited:0Cited References Count:58