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Global warming and recurrent mass bleaching of corals
The distinctive geographic footprints of recurrent bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef in 1998, 2002 and 2016 were determined by the spatial pattern of sea temperatures in each year, suggesting that local protection of reefs affords little or no resistance to extreme heat.
Global warming transforms coral reef assemblages
This study bridges the gap between the theory and practice of assessing the risk of ecosystem collapse, under the emerging framework for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Ecosystems, by rigorously defining both the initial and collapsed states, identifying the major driver of change, and establishing quantitative collapse thresholds.
Spatial and temporal patterns of mass bleaching of corals in the Anthropocene
Coral reefs in the present day have less time than in earlier periods to recover from bleaching events, and Tropical reef systems are transitioning to a new era in which the interval between recurrent bouts of coral bleaching is too short for a full recovery of mature assemblages.
Sleeping Functional Group Drives Coral-Reef Recovery
Limited functional redundancy in high diversity systems: resilience and ecosystem function on coral reefs
The results emphasize the need to consider the functional role of species when formulating management strategies and the potential weakness of the link between biodiversity and ecosystem resilience.
Cross-shelf variation in the role of parrotfishes on the Great Barrier Reef
Herbivorous fishes are a key functional group on coral reefs. These fishes are central to the capacity of reefs to resist phase shifts and regenerate after disturbance. Despite this importance few…
Cross-shelf benthic community structure on the Great Barrier Reef: relationships between macroalgal cover and herbivore biomass
To quantify all major substratum categories across multiple spatial scales and investigate cross-shelf relationships between macroalgal cover and herbivore biomass, the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is one of the most extensively studied coral reef systems in the world.
Limited Functional Redundancy in a High Diversity System: Single Species Dominates Key Ecological Process on Coral Reefs
Sargassum assays and remote video cameras were used to directly quantify the species responsible for removing macroalgae across a range of coral reef habitats on Lizard Island, northern Great Barrier Reef, and revealed that a single species, Naso unicornis, was almost solely responsible for the removal of SargASSum biomass across all habitats.
Human activity selectively impacts the ecosystem roles of parrotfishes on coral reefs
- D. Bellwood, A. Hoey, T. Hughes
- Environmental ScienceProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological…
- 22 April 2012
This work shows how coral reef fish populations respond to escalating fishing pressure across the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and infer the potential impact on four key functional roles performed by parrotfishes.
Consumer diversity interacts with prey defenses to drive ecosystem function.
The findings indicate that the total diet breadth of the herbivore community and the probability of all macroalgae being removed from reefs by herbivores increases with increasing Herbivore diversity, but that a few critical species drive this relationship.