We describe an automated, volumetric particle image velocimetry (PIV) and tracking method that measures time-resolved, 3D zooplankton trajectories and surrounding volumetric fluid velocity fields simultaneously and non-intrusively. The method is demonstrated for groups of copepods flowing past a wall-mounted cylinder. We show that copepods execute escape responses when subjected to a strain rate threshold upstream of a cylinder, but the same threshold range elicits no escape responses in the turbulent wake downstream. The method was also used to document the instantaneous slip velocity of zooplankton and the resulting differences in trajectory between zooplankton and non-inertial fluid particles in the unsteady wake flow, showing the method's capability to quantify drift for both passive and motile organisms in turbulent environments. Applications of the method extend to any group of organisms interacting with the surrounding fluid environment, where organism location, larger-scale eddies and smaller-scale fluid deformation rates can all be tracked and analyzed.
- 3D PTV
- Plankton drift
- Tomographic PIV
- Turbulence-organism interaction