Skip the menu

MOE home > Nature and Parks > EBSA home > Offshore Surface > 415 Sea of Japan, Tsushima Current waters


Offshore Surface 415 Sea of Japan, Tsushima Current waters

Note; The offshore surface areas have many physically fluid factors such as ocean current or seasonal changes, which may effect on the spawning grounds or distribution areas of certain organisms. Therefore, it is difficult to fix certain area as EBSAs of offshore surface spatially. In addition, available data for analysis are very limited. Therefore, the EBSAs of offshore surface shows the probabilistic distribution of important area as a result of mechanical analysis using best available data at the time, so that there are problems such as that some places considered to be consecutive from the ecological features are divided. Further analysis will be required to improve when the data became available in the future, and it is necessary to review the analysis method.

Basic Information A separate window opensReferences

Area (km2) 89698

Reason(s) for selection A separate window opensCriteria

Selected due to high levels on the criteria 2, 5. And selected by the MARXAN software.

Characteristics A separate window opensReferences

In these waters the Tsushima Current flows north, mixing with the Kuroshio Current, waters of the East China Sea from coastal China, and others. The Tsushima warm current is a surface current with warm, high-salinity, low nutrient water, but at the complex front area with the Liman Current, highly productive primary production similar to that of the Oyashio-Kuroshio transition region occurs. Warm-water fish whose main spawning grounds are in the East China Sea (Pacific bluefin tuna, yellowtail, saurel, and others) and Japanese flying squid migrate north along the Tsushima Current, and starting in the fall, they migrate south toward their spawning grounds from the San-in Coast to the East China Sea. On the continental shelf and slope areas, warm-water species are numerous toward the south and cold-water species are abundant toward the north. A large number of snow crabs inhabit the baythal zone. Dominant fish here include Maurolicus japonicus, Bothrocara hollandi and others. In addition, firefly squid and others are distributed in waters roughly 200 m deep off the coast from Hyogo Prefecture through Shimane Prefecture, which are important spawning grounds for these species. Due to its steep terrain, Toyama Bay sees upwelling currents from the sea floor, and since it also includes an abundance of riverbed water from the land, rich nutrients are transported to the surface layer. Another characteristic of these waters is their large volumes of phytoplankton and zooplankton growth (Sakurai, personal communication). Toyama Bay are also famous for their large production of firefly squid (Nakata, personal communication).

Species information (*) A separate window opensData source

Criteria 2
Branchiostegus japonicus (Horsehead tilefish) [Sp]
Hippoglossoides dubius (Flathead flounder) [Sp]
Etrumeus teres (Red-eye round herring) [Sp]
Engraulis japonicus (Japanese anchovy) [Sp]
Maurolicus japonicus (North Pacific lightfish) [Sp]
Sebastes schlegelii (Korean rockfish) [Sp]
Hyporhamphus sajori (Japanese halfbeak) [Sp]
Hippoglossoides pinetorum (Sôhachi) [Sp]
Trichiurus japonicus (Largehead hairtail) [Sp]
Takifugu rubripes (Japanese pufferfish) [Sp]
Glossanodon semifasciatus (Deep-sea smelt) [Sp]
Paralichthys olivaceus (Bastard halibut) [Sp]
Seriola quinqueradiata (Japanese amberjack) [Sp]
Trachurus japonicus (Japanese jack mackerel) [Sp]
Sardinops melanostictus (Japanese pilchard) [Sp]
Scomber japonicus (Chub mackerel) [Sp]
Pagrus major (Red seabream) [Sp]
Gadus macrocephalus (Pacific cod) [Sp]
Tanakius kitaharae (Willowy flounder) [Sp]
Sepioteuthis lessoniana (Bigfin reef squid) [Sp]
Loligo edulis (Swordtip squid) [Sp]
Todarodes pacificus (Japanese flying squid) [Sp]
Watasenia scintillans (Firefly squid) [Sp]

* This is the species list of which meet the criteria. In that matter, this list does not include all species that inhabit the individual area.
Abbreviation in the information is as follows.
[Br/Ne] : Adjacent water of breeding area or nesting site
[Sp] : Spawning area


Back to the top of this page