Calanus sinicus is a calanoid copepod widely distributed in coastal waters of China and Japan, and over-summering strategies may have major impacts on their population dynamics which in turn affect local marine food web structure. The abundance, stage composition, and sex composition of the planktonic copepod C. sinicus were studied from August to October 2002 in the southern Yellow Sea to understand how its population recovers from the over-summering state. Results showed that C. sinicus had low reproduction in August due to high temperature, except in waters near the Cheju Island with rich food and moderate bottom temperature, but the reproduction rates here decreased in September–October as food availability declined. When temperature dropped in September–October, C. sinicus actively propagated in coastal shallow waters. However, reproduction rates of C. sinicus individuals inhabiting the Yellow Sea Cold Water Mass (YSCWM) remained low during the three months of the study. The percentage of C. sinicus females was high during the reproductive period, which suggests that the sex composition of adult C. sinicus may reflect whether or not the population is in the reproductive mode. Numerous fifth copepodite stage (CV) C. sinicus aggregated in the YSCWM in a suspended developmental stage during the three months of this study, and they potentially served as the parental individuals for population development when conditions became optimal for reproduction later in the year.