Sea urchin mass mortality rapidly restores kelp forest communities

  title={Sea urchin mass mortality rapidly restores kelp forest communities},
  author={Jp Williams and JT Claisse and DJ Pondella II and Cm Williams and MJ Robart and Zoe M. Scholz and EM Jaco and Tom Ford and Heather Burdick and David A. Witting},
  journal={Marine Ecology Progress Series},
Giant kelp Macrocystis pyrifera is a foundational species that forms a 3-dimensional habitat and supports numerous high-value fisheries species. Constant grazing of kelp holdfasts by overabundant sea urchins causes catastrophic ecological and economic impacts on rocky reefs worldwide. Overgrazing creates urchin barrens that persist for decades in the absence of ecological forcing that would shift the ecosystem back to a kelp-dominated state. Annual surveys of kelp forest and urchin barren sites… 

Feeding Preference of the Sea Urchin Arbacia punctulata for Algal Turf Over Kelp in a Degraded Kelp Forest Ecosystem

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It is found that, for the case of bull kelp forests, setting more favorable initial conditions for kelp recovery through implementing both urchin harvesting and kelp outplanting at the start of the restoration project has a bigger impact on the kelp recovered rate than applying restoration efforts through a longer period of time.