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Sample records for european marine biodiversity

  1. Synthesis of Knowledge on Marine Biodiversity in European Seas: From Census to Sustainable Management

    PubMed Central

    Narayanaswamy, Bhavani E.

    2013-01-01

    The recently completed European Census of Marine Life, conducted within the framework of the global Census of Marine Life programme (2000–2010), markedly enhanced our understanding of marine biodiversity in European Seas, its importance within ecological systems, and the implications for human use. Here we undertake a synthesis of present knowledge of biodiversity in European Seas and identify remaining challenges that prevent sustainable management of marine biodiversity in one of the most exploited continents of the globe. Our analysis demonstrates that changes in faunal standing stock with depth depends on the size of the fauna, with macrofaunal abundance only declining with increasing water depth below 1000 m, whilst there was no obvious decrease in meiofauna with increasing depth. Species richness was highly variable for both deep water macro- and meio- fauna along latitudinal and longitudinal gradients. Nematode biodiversity decreased from the Atlantic into the Mediterranean whilst latitudinal related biodiversity patterns were similar for both faunal groups investigated, suggesting that the same environmental drivers were influencing the fauna. While climate change and habitat degradation are the most frequently implicated stressors affecting biodiversity throughout European Seas, quantitative understanding, both at individual and cumulative/synergistic level, of their influences are often lacking. Full identification and quantification of species, in even a single marine habitat, remains a distant goal, as we lack integrated data-sets to quantify these. While the importance of safeguarding marine biodiversity is recognised by policy makers, the lack of advanced understanding of species diversity and of a full survey of any single habitat raises huge challenges in quantifying change, and facilitating/prioritising habitat/ecosystem protection. Our study highlights a pressing requirement for more complete biodiversity surveys to be undertaken within

  2. Development of innovative tools for understanding marine biodiversity and assessing good environmental status, within the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borja, Angel; Uyarra, María C.

    2014-05-01

    Marine natural resources and ecosystem services constitute the natural capital that supports economies, societies and individual well-being. Good governance requires a quantification of the interactions and trade-offs among ecosystem services and understanding of how biodiversity underpins ecosystem functions and services across time, scales and sectors. Marine biodiversity is a key descriptor for the assessment within the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), approved in 2008, which comprises a total of 11 descriptors. However, the relationships between pressures from human activities and climatic influences and their effects on marine biological diversity are still only partially understood. Hence, these relationships need to be better understood in order to fully achieve a good environmental status (GEnS), as required by the MSFD. This contribution is based upon the FP7 EU project DEVOTES (DEVelopment Of innovative Tools for understanding marine biodiversity and assessing good Environmental Status), which focus on developing innovative conceptual frameworks, methods and coherent, shared protocols to provide consistent datasets and knowledge at different scales, within four regional seas (Black Sea, Mediterranean, Atlantic and Baltic Sea). This project is developing innovative approaches to valuate biodiversity and ecosystem services and to develop public goods and sustainable economic activities from them. The research will benefit sea users and stakeholders, and will contribute to assess and monitor the environmental status of marine waters. The main objectives are: (i) to improve our understanding of the impact of human activities and variations associated to climate on marine biodiversity, (ii) to test indicators (referred in the Commission Decision on GEnS) and develop new ones for assessment at several ecological levels (species, habitat, ecosystems) and for the characterization and status classification of the marine waters, (iii) to develop, test

  3. Relationships between biodiversity and the stability of marine ecosystems: Comparisons at a European scale using meta-analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cusson, Mathieu; Crowe, Tasman P.; Araújo, Rita; Arenas, Francisco; Aspden, Rebbecca; Bulleri, Fabio; Davoult, Dominique; Dyson, Kirstie; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Herkül, Kristjan; Hubas, Cédric; Jenkins, Stuart; Kotta, Jonne; Kraufvelin, Patrik; Migné, Aline; Molis, Markus; Mulholland, Olwyen; Noël, Laure M.-L. J.; Paterson, David M.; Saunders, James; Somerfield, Paul J.; Sousa-Pinto, Isabel; Spilmont, Nicolas; Terlizzi, Antonio; Benedetti-Cecchi, Lisandro

    2015-04-01

    The relationship between biodiversity and stability of marine benthic assemblages was investigated through meta-analyses using existing data sets (n = 28) covering various spatial (m-km) and temporal (1973-2006; ranging from 5 to > 250 months) scales in different benthic habitats (emergent rock, rock pools and sedimentary habitats) over different European marine systems (North Atlantic and western Mediterranean). Stability was measured by a lower variability in time, and variability was estimated as temporal variance of species richness, total abundance (density or % cover) and community structure (using Bray-Curtis dissimilarities on species composition and abundance). Stability generally decreased with species richness. Temporal variability in species richness increased with the number of species at both quadrat (< 1 m2) and site (~ 100 m2) scales, while no relationship was observed by multivariate analyses. Positive relationships were also observed at the scale of site between temporal variability in species richness and variability in community structure with evenness estimates. This implies that the relationship between species richness or evenness and species richness variability is slightly positive and depends on the scale of observation. Thus, species richness does not stabilize temporal fluctuations in species number, rather species rich assemblages are those most likely to undergo the largest fluctuations in species numbers and abundance from time to time. Changes within community assemblages in terms of structure are, however, generally independent of biodiversity. Except for sedimentary and rock pool habitats, no relationship was observed between temporal variation of total abundances and diversity at either scale. Overall, our results emphasize that the relation between species richness and species-level measures of temporal variability depends on scale of measurements, type of habitats and the marine system (North Atlantic and Mediterranean

  4. Marine biodiversity characteristics.

    PubMed

    Boeuf, Gilles

    2011-05-01

    Oceans contain the largest living volume of the "blue" planet, inhabited by approximately 235-250,000 described species, all groups included. They only represent some 13% of the known species on the Earth, but the marine biomasses are really huge. Marine phytoplankton alone represents half the production of organic matter on Earth while marine bacteria represent more than 10%. Life first appeared in the oceans more than 3.8 billion years ago and several determining events took place that changed the course of life, ranging from the development of the cell nucleus to sexual reproduction going through multi-cellular organisms and the capture of organelles. Of the 31 animal phyla currently listed, 12 are exclusively marine phyla and have never left the ocean. An interesting question is to try to understand why there are so few marine species versus land species? This pattern of distribution seems pretty recent in the course of Evolution. From an exclusively marine world, since the beginning until 440 million years ago, land number of species much increased 110 million years ago. Specific diversity and ancestral roles, in addition to organizational models and original behaviors, have made marine organisms excellent reservoirs for identifying and extracting molecules (>15,000 today) with pharmacological potential. They also make particularly relevant models for both fundamental and applied research. Some marine models have been the source of essential discoveries in life sciences. From this diversity, the ocean provides humankind with renewable resources, which are highly threatened today and need more adequate management to preserve ocean habitats, stocks and biodiversity. PMID:21640952

  5. Marine biodiversity and fishery sustainability.

    PubMed

    Shao, Kwang-Tsao

    2009-01-01

    Marine fish is one of the most important sources of animal protein for human use, especially in developing countries with coastlines. Marine fishery is also an important industry in many countries. Fifty years ago, many people believed that the ocean was so vast and so resilient that there was no way the marine environment could be changed, nor could marine fishery resources be depleted. Half a century later, we all agree that the depletion of fishery resources is happening mainly due to anthropogenic factors such as overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, invasive species introduction, and climate change. Since overfishing can cause chain reactions that decrease marine biodiversity drastically, there will be no seafood left after 40 years if we take no action. The most effective ways to reverse this downward trend and restore fishery resources are to promote fishery conservation, establish marine-protected areas, adopt ecosystem-based management, and implement a "precautionary principle." Additionally, enhancing public awareness of marine conservation, which includes eco-labeling, fishery ban or enclosure, slow fishing, and MPA (marine protected areas) enforcement is important and effective. In this paper, we use Taiwan as an example to discuss the problems facing marine biodiversity and sustainable fisheries. PMID:19965343

  6. Marine biodiversity and fishery sustainability.

    PubMed

    Shao, Kwang-Tsao

    2009-01-01

    Marine fish is one of the most important sources of animal protein for human use, especially in developing countries with coastlines. Marine fishery is also an important industry in many countries. Fifty years ago, many people believed that the ocean was so vast and so resilient that there was no way the marine environment could be changed, nor could marine fishery resources be depleted. Half a century later, we all agree that the depletion of fishery resources is happening mainly due to anthropogenic factors such as overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, invasive species introduction, and climate change. Since overfishing can cause chain reactions that decrease marine biodiversity drastically, there will be no seafood left after 40 years if we take no action. The most effective ways to reverse this downward trend and restore fishery resources are to promote fishery conservation, establish marine-protected areas, adopt ecosystem-based management, and implement a "precautionary principle." Additionally, enhancing public awareness of marine conservation, which includes eco-labeling, fishery ban or enclosure, slow fishing, and MPA (marine protected areas) enforcement is important and effective. In this paper, we use Taiwan as an example to discuss the problems facing marine biodiversity and sustainable fisheries.

  7. Is marine biodiversity at risk

    SciTech Connect

    Culotta, E.

    1994-02-18

    Evidence is beginning to accumulate that human development of coastlines and overfishing may be having deleterious effects on marine biodiversity. Although some biologists doubt marine extinctions, the possibility is being taken seriously by scientific organizations, who have been sponsoring conferences and workshops on the changing diversity of the oceans. Four federal agencies (NSF, NOAA, the Office of Naval Research, and DOE) have banded together to sponsor a National Research Council initiative to chart a research agenda.

  8. A process-driven sedimentary habitat modelling approach, explaining seafloor integrity and biodiversity assessment within the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galparsoro, Ibon; Borja, Ángel; Kostylev, Vladimir E.; Rodríguez, J. Germán; Pascual, Marta; Muxika, Iñigo

    2013-10-01

    The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) seeks to achieve good environmental status, by 2020, for European seas. This study analyses the applicability of a process-driven benthic sedimentary habitat model, to be used in the implementation of the MSFD in relation to biodiversity and seafloor integrity descriptors for sedimentary habitats. Our approach maps the major environmental factors influencing soft-bottom macrobenthic community structure and the life-history traits of species. Among the 16 environmental variables considered, a combination of water depth, mean grain size, a wave-induced sediment resuspension index and annual bottom maximum temperature, are the most significant factors explaining the variability in the structure of benthic communities in the study area. These variables are classified into those representing the ‘Disturbance' and ‘Scope for Growth' components of the environment. It was observed that the habitat classes defined in the process-driven model reflected different structural and functional characteristics of the benthos. Moreover, benthic community structure anomalies due to human pressures could also be detected within the model produced. Thus, the final process-driven habitat map can be considered as being highly useful for seafloor integrity and biodiversity assessment, within the European MSFD as well as for conservation, environmental status assessment and managing human activities, especially within the marine spatial planning process.

  9. Marine Biodiversity in Japanese Waters

    PubMed Central

    Fujikura, Katsunori; Lindsay, Dhugal; Kitazato, Hiroshi; Nishida, Shuhei; Shirayama, Yoshihisa

    2010-01-01

    To understand marine biodiversity in Japanese waters, we have compiled information on the marine biota in Japanese waters, including the number of described species (species richness), the history of marine biology research in Japan, the state of knowledge, the number of endemic species, the number of identified but undescribed species, the number of known introduced species, and the number of taxonomic experts and identification guides, with consideration of the general ocean environmental background, such as the physical and geological settings. A total of 33,629 species have been reported to occur in Japanese waters. The state of knowledge was extremely variable, with taxa containing many inconspicuous, smaller species tending to be less well known. The total number of identified but undescribed species was at least 121,913. The total number of described species combined with the number of identified but undescribed species reached 155,542. This is the best estimate of the total number of species in Japanese waters and indicates that more than 70% of Japan's marine biodiversity remains un-described. The number of species reported as introduced into Japanese waters was 39. This is the first attempt to estimate species richness for all marine species in Japanese waters. Although its marine biota can be considered relatively well known, at least within the Asian-Pacific region, considering the vast number of different marine environments such as coral reefs, ocean trenches, ice-bound waters, methane seeps, and hydrothermal vents, much work remains to be done. We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems. Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research. Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans. PMID:20689840

  10. Marine biodiversity of Aotearoa New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Dennis P; Beaumont, Jennifer; MacDiarmid, Alison; Robertson, Donald A; Ahyong, Shane T

    2010-01-01

    The marine-biodiversity assessment of New Zealand (Aotearoa as known to Māori) is confined to the 200 nautical-mile boundary of the Exclusive Economic Zone, which, at 4.2 million km(2), is one of the largest in the world. It spans 30 degrees of latitude and includes a high diversity of seafloor relief, including a trench 10 km deep. Much of this region remains unexplored biologically, especially the 50% of the EEZ deeper than 2,000 m. Knowledge of the marine biota is based on more than 200 years of marine exploration in the region. The major oceanographic data repository is the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), which is involved in several Census of Marine Life field projects and is the location of the Southwestern Pacific Regional OBIS Node; NIWA is also data manager and custodian for fisheries research data owned by the Ministry of Fisheries. Related data sources cover alien species, environmental measures, and historical information. Museum collections in New Zealand hold more than 800,000 registered lots representing several million specimens. During the past decade, 220 taxonomic specialists (85 marine) from 18 countries have been engaged in a project to review New Zealand's entire biodiversity. The above-mentioned marine information sources, published literature, and reports were scrutinized to give the results summarized here for the first time (current to 2010), including data on endemism and invasive species. There are 17,135 living species in the EEZ. This diversity includes 4,315 known undescribed species in collections. Species diversity for the most intensively studied phylum-level taxa (Porifera, Cnidaria, Mollusca, Brachiopoda, Bryozoa, Kinorhyncha, Echinodermata, Chordata) is more or less equivalent to that in the ERMS (European Register of Marine Species) region, which is 5.5 times larger in area than the New Zealand EEZ. The implication is that, when all other New Zealand phyla are equally well studied, total marine

  11. Marine Biodiversity of Aotearoa New Zealand

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, Dennis P.; Beaumont, Jennifer; MacDiarmid, Alison; Robertson, Donald A.; Ahyong, Shane T.

    2010-01-01

    The marine-biodiversity assessment of New Zealand (Aotearoa as known to Māori) is confined to the 200 nautical-mile boundary of the Exclusive Economic Zone, which, at 4.2 million km2, is one of the largest in the world. It spans 30° of latitude and includes a high diversity of seafloor relief, including a trench 10 km deep. Much of this region remains unexplored biologically, especially the 50% of the EEZ deeper than 2,000 m. Knowledge of the marine biota is based on more than 200 years of marine exploration in the region. The major oceanographic data repository is the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), which is involved in several Census of Marine Life field projects and is the location of the Southwestern Pacific Regional OBIS Node; NIWA is also data manager and custodian for fisheries research data owned by the Ministry of Fisheries. Related data sources cover alien species, environmental measures, and historical information. Museum collections in New Zealand hold more than 800,000 registered lots representing several million specimens. During the past decade, 220 taxonomic specialists (85 marine) from 18 countries have been engaged in a project to review New Zealand's entire biodiversity. The above-mentioned marine information sources, published literature, and reports were scrutinized to give the results summarized here for the first time (current to 2010), including data on endemism and invasive species. There are 17,135 living species in the EEZ. This diversity includes 4,315 known undescribed species in collections. Species diversity for the most intensively studied phylum-level taxa (Porifera, Cnidaria, Mollusca, Brachiopoda, Bryozoa, Kinorhyncha, Echinodermata, Chordata) is more or less equivalent to that in the ERMS (European Register of Marine Species) region, which is 5.5 times larger in area than the New Zealand EEZ. The implication is that, when all other New Zealand phyla are equally well studied, total marine diversity

  12. European Marine Infrastructures: perspectives for Marine and Earth Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favali, P.; Beranzoli, L.; Egerton, P.; Le Traon, P. Y.; Los, W.

    2009-04-01

    The European Commission (EC) is supporting a variety of Research Infrastructures in many different scientific fields: Social Sciences and Humanities, Environmental Sciences, Energy, Biological and Medical Sciences, Physical Sciences and Engineering and e-Infrastructures. All these infrastructures are included in the new report of the "European Roadmap for Research Infrastructures" published in late 2008 by ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures, http://cordis.europa.eu/esfri/). In particular, some research infrastructures for the Environmental Sciences specifically addressed to the marine environment are presented: • EMSO (European Multidisciplinary Seafloor Observatory). The development of this underwater network is being supported by several other EC initiatives, ESONET-NoE (European Seas Network), coordinated by IFREMER (http://www.esonet-emso.org/esonet-noe/). • ERICON AURORA BOREALIS (European Research Icebreaker Consortium, http://www.eri-aurora-borealis.eu/). • EURO-ARGO (Global Ocean Observing Infrastructure, http://www.euro-argo.eu/). • LIFEWATCH (E-science and technology infrastructure for biodiversity data and observatories, http://www.lifewatch.eu/). In particular through its scientific marine networks: EUR-OCEANS (European Network of Excellence for Ocean Ecosystems Analysis, http://www.eur-oceans.eu/); MARBEF-NoE (MARine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning, http://www.marbef.org/ and Marine Genomics (http://www.marine-genomics-europe.org/). Possible profitable links with new research infrastructures recently included in the roadmap, such as EPOS (European Plate Observing System) and SIAEOS (Svalbard Integrated Arctic Earth Observing System) are also pointed out. The marine EC infrastructures presented constitute the fundamental tools to support the Earth Sciences, both terrestrial and marine.

  13. Global priorities for marine biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Selig, Elizabeth R; Turner, Will R; Troëng, Sebastian; Wallace, Bryan P; Halpern, Benjamin S; Kaschner, Kristin; Lascelles, Ben G; Carpenter, Kent E; Mittermeier, Russell A

    2014-01-01

    In recent decades, many marine populations have experienced major declines in abundance, but we still know little about where management interventions may help protect the highest levels of marine biodiversity. We used modeled spatial distribution data for nearly 12,500 species to quantify global patterns of species richness and two measures of endemism. By combining these data with spatial information on cumulative human impacts, we identified priority areas where marine biodiversity is most and least impacted by human activities, both within Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) and Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ). Our analyses highlighted places that are both accepted priorities for marine conservation like the Coral Triangle, as well as less well-known locations in the southwest Indian Ocean, western Pacific Ocean, Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, and within semi-enclosed seas like the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas. Within highly impacted priority areas, climate and fishing were the biggest stressors. Although new priorities may arise as we continue to improve marine species range datasets, results from this work are an essential first step in guiding limited resources to regions where investment could best sustain marine biodiversity.

  14. Global Priorities for Marine Biodiversity Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Selig, Elizabeth R.; Turner, Will R.; Troëng, Sebastian; Wallace, Bryan P.; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Kaschner, Kristin; Lascelles, Ben G.; Carpenter, Kent E.; Mittermeier, Russell A.

    2014-01-01

    In recent decades, many marine populations have experienced major declines in abundance, but we still know little about where management interventions may help protect the highest levels of marine biodiversity. We used modeled spatial distribution data for nearly 12,500 species to quantify global patterns of species richness and two measures of endemism. By combining these data with spatial information on cumulative human impacts, we identified priority areas where marine biodiversity is most and least impacted by human activities, both within Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) and Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ). Our analyses highlighted places that are both accepted priorities for marine conservation like the Coral Triangle, as well as less well-known locations in the southwest Indian Ocean, western Pacific Ocean, Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, and within semi-enclosed seas like the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas. Within highly impacted priority areas, climate and fishing were the biggest stressors. Although new priorities may arise as we continue to improve marine species range datasets, results from this work are an essential first step in guiding limited resources to regions where investment could best sustain marine biodiversity. PMID:24416151

  15. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots

    PubMed Central

    Barner, Allison K.; Benkwitt, Cassandra E.; Boersma, Kate S.; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B.; Ingeman, Kurt E.; Kindinger, Tye L.; Lindsley, Amy J.; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N.; Rowe, Jennifer C.; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A.; Heppell, Selina S.

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon’s diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  16. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots.

    PubMed

    Piacenza, Susan E; Thurman, Lindsey L; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lindsley, Amy J; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon's diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  17. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots.

    PubMed

    Piacenza, Susan E; Thurman, Lindsey L; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lindsley, Amy J; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon's diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  18. Phanerozoic Earth system evolution and marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Hannisdal, Bjarte; Peters, Shanan E

    2011-11-25

    The Phanerozoic fossil record of marine animal diversity covaries with the amount of marine sedimentary rock. The extent to which this covariation reflects a geologically controlled sampling bias remains unknown. We show that Phanerozoic records of seawater chemistry and continental flooding contain information on the diversity of marine animals that is independent of sedimentary rock quantity and sampling. Interrelationships among variables suggest long-term interactions among continental flooding, sulfur and carbon cycling, and macroevolution. Thus, mutual responses to interacting Earth systems, not sampling biases, explain much of the observed covariation between Phanerozoic patterns of sedimentation and fossil biodiversity. Linkages between biodiversity and environmental records likely reflect complex biotic responses to changing ocean redox conditions and long-term sea-level fluctuations driven by plate tectonics. PMID:22116884

  19. Genomic approaches in marine biodiversity and aquaculture.

    PubMed

    Huete-Pérez, Jorge A; Quezada, Fernando

    2013-01-01

    Recent advances in genomic and post-genomic technologies have now established the new standard in medical and biotechnological research. The introduction of next-generation sequencing, NGS,has resulted in the generation of thousands of genomes from all domains of life, including the genomes of complex uncultured microbial communities revealed through metagenomics. Although the application of genomics to marine biodiversity remains poorly developed overall, some noteworthy progress has been made in recent years. The genomes of various model marine organisms have been published and a few more are underway. In addition, the recent large-scale analysis of marine microbes, along with transcriptomic and proteomic approaches to the study of teleost fishes, mollusks and crustaceans, to mention a few, has provided a better understanding of phenotypic variability and functional genomics. The past few years have also seen advances in applications relevant to marine aquaculture and fisheries. In this review we introduce several examples of recent discoveries and progress made towards engendering genomic resources aimed at enhancing our understanding of marine biodiversity and promoting the development of aquaculture. Finally, we discuss the need for auspicious science policies to address challenges confronting smaller nations in the appropriate oversight of this growing domain as they strive to guarantee food security and conservation of their natural resources.

  20. Economic valuation for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Beaumont, N J; Austen, M C; Mangi, S C; Townsend, M

    2008-03-01

    Policy makers are increasingly recognising the role of environmental valuation to guide and support the management and conservation of biodiversity. This paper presents a goods and services approach to determine the economic value of marine biodiversity in the UK, with the aim of clarifying the role of valuation in the management of marine biodiversity. The goods and services resulting from UK marine biodiversity are detailed, and 8 of the 13 services are valued in monetary terms. It is found that a decline in UK marine biodiversity could result in a varying, and at present unpredictable, change in the provision of goods and services, including reduced resilience and resistance to change, declining marine environmental health, reduced fisheries potential, and loss of recreational opportunities. The results suggest that this approach can facilitate biodiversity management by enabling the optimal allocation of limited management resources and through raising awareness of the importance of marine biodiversity. PMID:18191954

  1. Economic valuation for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Beaumont, N J; Austen, M C; Mangi, S C; Townsend, M

    2008-03-01

    Policy makers are increasingly recognising the role of environmental valuation to guide and support the management and conservation of biodiversity. This paper presents a goods and services approach to determine the economic value of marine biodiversity in the UK, with the aim of clarifying the role of valuation in the management of marine biodiversity. The goods and services resulting from UK marine biodiversity are detailed, and 8 of the 13 services are valued in monetary terms. It is found that a decline in UK marine biodiversity could result in a varying, and at present unpredictable, change in the provision of goods and services, including reduced resilience and resistance to change, declining marine environmental health, reduced fisheries potential, and loss of recreational opportunities. The results suggest that this approach can facilitate biodiversity management by enabling the optimal allocation of limited management resources and through raising awareness of the importance of marine biodiversity.

  2. Marine microbial biodiversity, bioinformatics and biotechnology (M2B3) data reporting and service standards.

    PubMed

    Ten Hoopen, Petra; Pesant, Stéphane; Kottmann, Renzo; Kopf, Anna; Bicak, Mesude; Claus, Simon; Deneudt, Klaas; Borremans, Catherine; Thijsse, Peter; Dekeyzer, Stefanie; Schaap, Dick Ma; Bowler, Chris; Glöckner, Frank Oliver; Cochrane, Guy

    2015-01-01

    Contextual data collected concurrently with molecular samples are critical to the use of metagenomics in the fields of marine biodiversity, bioinformatics and biotechnology. We present here Marine Microbial Biodiversity, Bioinformatics and Biotechnology (M2B3) standards for "Reporting" and "Serving" data. The M2B3 Reporting Standard (1) describes minimal mandatory and recommended contextual information for a marine microbial sample obtained in the epipelagic zone, (2) includes meaningful information for researchers in the oceanographic, biodiversity and molecular disciplines, and (3) can easily be adopted by any marine laboratory with minimum sampling resources. The M2B3 Service Standard defines a software interface through which these data can be discovered and explored in data repositories. The M2B3 Standards were developed by the European project Micro B3, funded under 7(th) Framework Programme "Ocean of Tomorrow", and were first used with the Ocean Sampling Day initiative. We believe that these standards have value in broader marine science.

  3. Marine Biodiversity in the Australian Region

    PubMed Central

    Butler, Alan J.; Rees, Tony; Beesley, Pam; Bax, Nicholas J.

    2010-01-01

    The entire Australian marine jurisdictional area, including offshore and sub-Antarctic islands, is considered in this paper. Most records, however, come from the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) around the continent of Australia itself. The counts of species have been obtained from four primary databases (the Australian Faunal Directory, Codes for Australian Aquatic Biota, Online Zoological Collections of Australian Museums, and the Australian node of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System), but even these are an underestimate of described species. In addition, some partially completed databases for particular taxonomic groups, and specialized databases (for introduced and threatened species) have been used. Experts also provided estimates of the number of known species not yet in the major databases. For only some groups could we obtain an (expert opinion) estimate of undiscovered species. The databases provide patchy information about endemism, levels of threat, and introductions. We conclude that there are about 33,000 marine species (mainly animals) in the major databases, of which 130 are introduced, 58 listed as threatened and an unknown percentage endemic. An estimated 17,000 more named species are either known from the Australian EEZ but not in the present databases, or potentially occur there. It is crudely estimated that there may be as many as 250,000 species (known and yet to be discovered) in the Australian EEZ. For 17 higher taxa, there is sufficient detail for subdivision by Large Marine Domains, for comparison with other National and Regional Implementation Committees of the Census of Marine Life. Taxonomic expertise in Australia is unevenly distributed across taxa, and declining. Comments are given briefly on biodiversity management measures in Australia, including but not limited to marine protected areas. PMID:20689847

  4. Marine biodiversity in the Australian region.

    PubMed

    Butler, Alan J; Rees, Tony; Beesley, Pam; Bax, Nicholas J

    2010-01-01

    The entire Australian marine jurisdictional area, including offshore and sub-Antarctic islands, is considered in this paper. Most records, however, come from the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) around the continent of Australia itself. The counts of species have been obtained from four primary databases (the Australian Faunal Directory, Codes for Australian Aquatic Biota, Online Zoological Collections of Australian Museums, and the Australian node of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System), but even these are an underestimate of described species. In addition, some partially completed databases for particular taxonomic groups, and specialized databases (for introduced and threatened species) have been used. Experts also provided estimates of the number of known species not yet in the major databases. For only some groups could we obtain an (expert opinion) estimate of undiscovered species. The databases provide patchy information about endemism, levels of threat, and introductions. We conclude that there are about 33,000 marine species (mainly animals) in the major databases, of which 130 are introduced, 58 listed as threatened and an unknown percentage endemic. An estimated 17,000 more named species are either known from the Australian EEZ but not in the present databases, or potentially occur there. It is crudely estimated that there may be as many as 250,000 species (known and yet to be discovered) in the Australian EEZ. For 17 higher taxa, there is sufficient detail for subdivision by Large Marine Domains, for comparison with other National and Regional Implementation Committees of the Census of Marine Life. Taxonomic expertise in Australia is unevenly distributed across taxa, and declining. Comments are given briefly on biodiversity management measures in Australia, including but not limited to marine protected areas. PMID:20689847

  5. Soil phosphorus constrains biodiversity across European grasslands.

    PubMed

    Ceulemans, Tobias; Stevens, Carly J; Duchateau, Luc; Jacquemyn, Hans; Gowing, David J G; Merckx, Roel; Wallace, Hilary; van Rooijen, Nils; Goethem, Thomas; Bobbink, Roland; Dorland, Edu; Gaudnik, Cassandre; Alard, Didier; Corcket, Emmanuel; Muller, Serge; Dise, Nancy B; Dupré, Cecilia; Diekmann, Martin; Honnay, Olivier

    2014-12-01

    Nutrient pollution presents a serious threat to biodiversity conservation. In terrestrial ecosystems, the deleterious effects of nitrogen pollution are increasingly understood and several mitigating environmental policies have been developed. Compared to nitrogen, the effects of increased phosphorus have received far less attention, although some studies have indicated that phosphorus pollution may be detrimental for biodiversity as well. On the basis of a dataset covering 501 grassland plots throughout Europe, we demonstrate that, independent of the level of atmospheric nitrogen deposition and soil acidity, plant species richness was consistently negatively related to soil phosphorus. We also identified thresholds in soil phosphorus above which biodiversity appears to remain at a constant low level. Our results indicate that nutrient management policies biased toward reducing nitrogen pollution will fail to preserve biodiversity. As soil phosphorus is known to be extremely persistent and we found no evidence for a critical threshold below which no environmental harm is expected, we suggest that agro-environmental schemes should include grasslands that are permanently free from phosphorus fertilization.

  6. Enhanced biodiversity beyond marine reserve boundaries: the cup spillith over.

    PubMed

    Russ, Garry R; Alcala, Angel C

    2011-01-01

    Overfishing can have detrimental effects on marine biodiversity and the structure of marine ecosystems. No-take marine reserves (NTMRs) are much advocated as a means of protecting biodiversity and ecosystem structure from overharvest. In contrast to terrestrial protected areas, NTMRs are not only expected to conserve or recover biodiversity and ecosystems within their boundaries, but also to enhance biodiversity beyond their boundaries by exporting species richness and more complex biological communities. Here we show that species richness of large predatory reef fish increased fourfold and 11-fold inside two Philippine no-take marine reserves over 14 and 25 years, respectively. Outside one reserve (Apo) the species richness also increased. This increase beyond the Apo reserve boundary was 78% higher closer to the boundary (200-250 m) than farther from it (250-500 m). The increase in richness beyond the boundary could not be explained by improvements over time in habitat or prey availability. Furthermore, community composition of predatory fish outside but close to (200-250 m) the Apo reserve became very similar to that inside the reserve over time, almost converging with it in multivariate space after 26 years of reserve protection. This is consistent with the suggestion that, as community composition inside Apo reserve increased in complexity, this complexity spilled over the boundary into nearby fished areas. Clearly, the spillover of species richness and community complexity is a direct consequence of the spillover of abundance of multiple species. However, this spillover of species richness and community complexity demonstrates an important benefit of biodiversity and ecosystem export from reserves, and it provides hope that reserves can help to reverse the decline of marine ecosystems and biodiversity.

  7. Marine Biodiversity in the Caribbean: Regional Estimates and Distribution Patterns

    PubMed Central

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Díaz, Juan Manuel; Klein, Eduardo; Alvarado, Juan José; Díaz, Cristina; Gobin, Judith; Escobar-Briones, Elva; Cruz-Motta, Juan José; Weil, Ernesto; Cortés, Jorge; Bastidas, Ana Carolina; Robertson, Ross; Zapata, Fernando; Martín, Alberto; Castillo, Julio; Kazandjian, Aniuska; Ortiz, Manuel

    2010-01-01

    This paper provides an analysis of the distribution patterns of marine biodiversity and summarizes the major activities of the Census of Marine Life program in the Caribbean region. The coastal Caribbean region is a large marine ecosystem (LME) characterized by coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, but including other environments, such as sandy beaches and rocky shores. These tropical ecosystems incorporate a high diversity of associated flora and fauna, and the nations that border the Caribbean collectively encompass a major global marine biodiversity hot spot. We analyze the state of knowledge of marine biodiversity based on the geographic distribution of georeferenced species records and regional taxonomic lists. A total of 12,046 marine species are reported in this paper for the Caribbean region. These include representatives from 31 animal phyla, two plant phyla, one group of Chromista, and three groups of Protoctista. Sampling effort has been greatest in shallow, nearshore waters, where there is relatively good coverage of species records; offshore and deep environments have been less studied. Additionally, we found that the currently accepted classification of marine ecoregions of the Caribbean did not apply for the benthic distributions of five relatively well known taxonomic groups. Coastal species richness tends to concentrate along the Antillean arc (Cuba to the southernmost Antilles) and the northern coast of South America (Venezuela – Colombia), while no pattern can be observed in the deep sea with the available data. Several factors make it impossible to determine the extent to which these distribution patterns accurately reflect the true situation for marine biodiversity in general: (1) highly localized concentrations of collecting effort and a lack of collecting in many areas and ecosystems, (2) high variability among collecting methods, (3) limited taxonomic expertise for many groups, and (4) differing levels of activity in the study of

  8. Marine biodiversity in the Caribbean: regional estimates and distribution patterns.

    PubMed

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Díaz, Juan Manuel; Klein, Eduardo; Alvarado, Juan José; Díaz, Cristina; Gobin, Judith; Escobar-Briones, Elva; Cruz-Motta, Juan José; Weil, Ernesto; Cortés, Jorge; Bastidas, Ana Carolina; Robertson, Ross; Zapata, Fernando; Martín, Alberto; Castillo, Julio; Kazandjian, Aniuska; Ortiz, Manuel

    2010-08-02

    This paper provides an analysis of the distribution patterns of marine biodiversity and summarizes the major activities of the Census of Marine Life program in the Caribbean region. The coastal Caribbean region is a large marine ecosystem (LME) characterized by coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, but including other environments, such as sandy beaches and rocky shores. These tropical ecosystems incorporate a high diversity of associated flora and fauna, and the nations that border the Caribbean collectively encompass a major global marine biodiversity hot spot. We analyze the state of knowledge of marine biodiversity based on the geographic distribution of georeferenced species records and regional taxonomic lists. A total of 12,046 marine species are reported in this paper for the Caribbean region. These include representatives from 31 animal phyla, two plant phyla, one group of Chromista, and three groups of Protoctista. Sampling effort has been greatest in shallow, nearshore waters, where there is relatively good coverage of species records; offshore and deep environments have been less studied. Additionally, we found that the currently accepted classification of marine ecoregions of the Caribbean did not apply for the benthic distributions of five relatively well known taxonomic groups. Coastal species richness tends to concentrate along the Antillean arc (Cuba to the southernmost Antilles) and the northern coast of South America (Venezuela-Colombia), while no pattern can be observed in the deep sea with the available data. Several factors make it impossible to determine the extent to which these distribution patterns accurately reflect the true situation for marine biodiversity in general: (1) highly localized concentrations of collecting effort and a lack of collecting in many areas and ecosystems, (2) high variability among collecting methods, (3) limited taxonomic expertise for many groups, and (4) differing levels of activity in the study of different

  9. Marine biodiversity in the Caribbean: regional estimates and distribution patterns.

    PubMed

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Díaz, Juan Manuel; Klein, Eduardo; Alvarado, Juan José; Díaz, Cristina; Gobin, Judith; Escobar-Briones, Elva; Cruz-Motta, Juan José; Weil, Ernesto; Cortés, Jorge; Bastidas, Ana Carolina; Robertson, Ross; Zapata, Fernando; Martín, Alberto; Castillo, Julio; Kazandjian, Aniuska; Ortiz, Manuel

    2010-01-01

    This paper provides an analysis of the distribution patterns of marine biodiversity and summarizes the major activities of the Census of Marine Life program in the Caribbean region. The coastal Caribbean region is a large marine ecosystem (LME) characterized by coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, but including other environments, such as sandy beaches and rocky shores. These tropical ecosystems incorporate a high diversity of associated flora and fauna, and the nations that border the Caribbean collectively encompass a major global marine biodiversity hot spot. We analyze the state of knowledge of marine biodiversity based on the geographic distribution of georeferenced species records and regional taxonomic lists. A total of 12,046 marine species are reported in this paper for the Caribbean region. These include representatives from 31 animal phyla, two plant phyla, one group of Chromista, and three groups of Protoctista. Sampling effort has been greatest in shallow, nearshore waters, where there is relatively good coverage of species records; offshore and deep environments have been less studied. Additionally, we found that the currently accepted classification of marine ecoregions of the Caribbean did not apply for the benthic distributions of five relatively well known taxonomic groups. Coastal species richness tends to concentrate along the Antillean arc (Cuba to the southernmost Antilles) and the northern coast of South America (Venezuela-Colombia), while no pattern can be observed in the deep sea with the available data. Several factors make it impossible to determine the extent to which these distribution patterns accurately reflect the true situation for marine biodiversity in general: (1) highly localized concentrations of collecting effort and a lack of collecting in many areas and ecosystems, (2) high variability among collecting methods, (3) limited taxonomic expertise for many groups, and (4) differing levels of activity in the study of different

  10. Status of marine biodiversity of the China seas.

    PubMed

    Liu, J Y

    2013-01-01

    China's seas cover nearly 5 million square kilometers extending from the tropical to the temperate climate zones and bordering on 32,000 km of coastline, including islands. Comprehensive systematic study of the marine biodiversity within this region began in the early 1950s with the establishment of the Qingdao Marine Biological Laboratory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since that time scientists have carried out intensive multidisciplinary research on marine life in the China seas and have recorded 22,629 species belonging to 46 phyla. The marine flora and fauna of the China seas are characterized by high biodiversity, including tropical and subtropical elements of the Indo-West Pacific warm-water fauna in the South and East China seas, and temperate elements of North Pacific temperate fauna mainly in the Yellow Sea. The southern South China Sea fauna is characterized by typical tropical elements paralleled with the Philippine-New Guinea-Indonesia Coral triangle typical tropical faunal center. This paper summarizes advances in studies of marine biodiversity in China's seas and discusses current research mainly on characteristics and changes in marine biodiversity, including the monitoring, assessment, and conservation of endangered species and particularly the strengthening of effective management. Studies of (1) a tidal flat in a semi-enclosed embayment, (2) the impact of global climate change on a cold-water ecosystem, (3) coral reefs of Hainan Island and Xisha-Nansha atolls, (4) mangrove forests of the South China Sea, (5) a threatened seagrass field, and (6) an example of stock enhancement practices of the Chinese shrimp fishery are briefly introduced. Besides the overexploitation of living resources (more than 12.4 million tons yielded in 2007), the major threat to the biodiversity of the China seas is environmental deterioration (pollution, coastal construction), particularly in the brackish waters of estuarine environments, which are characterized by

  11. Status of marine biodiversity of the China seas.

    PubMed

    Liu, J Y

    2013-01-01

    China's seas cover nearly 5 million square kilometers extending from the tropical to the temperate climate zones and bordering on 32,000 km of coastline, including islands. Comprehensive systematic study of the marine biodiversity within this region began in the early 1950s with the establishment of the Qingdao Marine Biological Laboratory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since that time scientists have carried out intensive multidisciplinary research on marine life in the China seas and have recorded 22,629 species belonging to 46 phyla. The marine flora and fauna of the China seas are characterized by high biodiversity, including tropical and subtropical elements of the Indo-West Pacific warm-water fauna in the South and East China seas, and temperate elements of North Pacific temperate fauna mainly in the Yellow Sea. The southern South China Sea fauna is characterized by typical tropical elements paralleled with the Philippine-New Guinea-Indonesia Coral triangle typical tropical faunal center. This paper summarizes advances in studies of marine biodiversity in China's seas and discusses current research mainly on characteristics and changes in marine biodiversity, including the monitoring, assessment, and conservation of endangered species and particularly the strengthening of effective management. Studies of (1) a tidal flat in a semi-enclosed embayment, (2) the impact of global climate change on a cold-water ecosystem, (3) coral reefs of Hainan Island and Xisha-Nansha atolls, (4) mangrove forests of the South China Sea, (5) a threatened seagrass field, and (6) an example of stock enhancement practices of the Chinese shrimp fishery are briefly introduced. Besides the overexploitation of living resources (more than 12.4 million tons yielded in 2007), the major threat to the biodiversity of the China seas is environmental deterioration (pollution, coastal construction), particularly in the brackish waters of estuarine environments, which are characterized by

  12. Status of Marine Biodiversity of the China Seas

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    China's seas cover nearly 5 million square kilometers extending from the tropical to the temperate climate zones and bordering on 32,000 km of coastline, including islands. Comprehensive systematic study of the marine biodiversity within this region began in the early 1950s with the establishment of the Qingdao Marine Biological Laboratory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since that time scientists have carried out intensive multidisciplinary research on marine life in the China seas and have recorded 22,629 species belonging to 46 phyla. The marine flora and fauna of the China seas are characterized by high biodiversity, including tropical and subtropical elements of the Indo-West Pacific warm-water fauna in the South and East China seas, and temperate elements of North Pacific temperate fauna mainly in the Yellow Sea. The southern South China Sea fauna is characterized by typical tropical elements paralleled with the Philippine-New Guinea-Indonesia Coral triangle typical tropical faunal center. This paper summarizes advances in studies of marine biodiversity in China's seas and discusses current research mainly on characteristics and changes in marine biodiversity, including the monitoring, assessment, and conservation of endangered species and particularly the strengthening of effective management. Studies of (1) a tidal flat in a semi-enclosed embayment, (2) the impact of global climate change on a cold-water ecosystem, (3) coral reefs of Hainan Island and Xisha-Nansha atolls, (4) mangrove forests of the South China Sea, (5) a threatened seagrass field, and (6) an example of stock enhancement practices of the Chinese shrimp fishery are briefly introduced. Besides the overexploitation of living resources (more than 12.4 million tons yielded in 2007), the major threat to the biodiversity of the China seas is environmental deterioration (pollution, coastal construction), particularly in the brackish waters of estuarine environments, which are characterized by

  13. Relating Remotely Sensed Optical Variability to Marine Benthic Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Herkül, Kristjan; Kotta, Jonne; Kutser, Tiit; Vahtmäe, Ele

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity is important in maintaining ecosystem viability, and the availability of adequate biodiversity data is a prerequisite for the sustainable management of natural resources. As such, there is a clear need to map biodiversity at high spatial resolutions across large areas. Airborne and spaceborne optical remote sensing is a potential tool to provide such biodiversity data. The spectral variation hypothesis (SVH) predicts a positive correlation between spectral variability (SV) of a remotely sensed image and biodiversity. The SVH has only been tested on a few terrestrial plant communities. Our study is the first attempt to apply the SVH in the marine environment using hyperspectral imagery recorded by Compact Airborne Spectrographic Imager (CASI). All coverage-based diversity measures of benthic macrophytes and invertebrates showed low but statistically significant positive correlations with SV whereas the relationship between biomass-based diversity measures and SV were weak or lacking. The observed relationships did not vary with spatial scale. SV had the highest independent effect among predictor variables in the statistical models of coverage-derived total benthic species richness and Shannon index. Thus, the relevance of SVH in marine benthic habitats was proved and this forms a prerequisite for the future use of SV in benthic biodiversity assessments. PMID:23405180

  14. Marine microbial biodiversity, bioinformatics and biotechnology (M2B3) data reporting and service standards

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Contextual data collected concurrently with molecular samples are critical to the use of metagenomics in the fields of marine biodiversity, bioinformatics and biotechnology. We present here Marine Microbial Biodiversity, Bioinformatics and Biotechnology (M2B3) standards for “Reporting” and “Serving” data. The M2B3 Reporting Standard (1) describes minimal mandatory and recommended contextual information for a marine microbial sample obtained in the epipelagic zone, (2) includes meaningful information for researchers in the oceanographic, biodiversity and molecular disciplines, and (3) can easily be adopted by any marine laboratory with minimum sampling resources. The M2B3 Service Standard defines a software interface through which these data can be discovered and explored in data repositories. The M2B3 Standards were developed by the European project Micro B3, funded under 7th Framework Programme “Ocean of Tomorrow”, and were first used with the Ocean Sampling Day initiative. We believe that these standards have value in broader marine science. PMID:26203332

  15. Current and Future Patterns of Global Marine Mammal Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Kaschner, Kristin; Tittensor, Derek P.; Ready, Jonathan; Gerrodette, Tim; Worm, Boris

    2011-01-01

    Quantifying the spatial distribution of taxa is an important prerequisite for the preservation of biodiversity, and can provide a baseline against which to measure the impacts of climate change. Here we analyse patterns of marine mammal species richness based on predictions of global distributional ranges for 115 species, including all extant pinnipeds and cetaceans. We used an environmental suitability model specifically designed to address the paucity of distributional data for many marine mammal species. We generated richness patterns by overlaying predicted distributions for all species; these were then validated against sightings data from dedicated long-term surveys in the Eastern Tropical Pacific, the Northeast Atlantic and the Southern Ocean. Model outputs correlated well with empirically observed patterns of biodiversity in all three survey regions. Marine mammal richness was predicted to be highest in temperate waters of both hemispheres with distinct hotspots around New Zealand, Japan, Baja California, the Galapagos Islands, the Southeast Pacific, and the Southern Ocean. We then applied our model to explore potential changes in biodiversity under future perturbations of environmental conditions. Forward projections of biodiversity using an intermediate Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) temperature scenario predicted that projected ocean warming and changes in sea ice cover until 2050 may have moderate effects on the spatial patterns of marine mammal richness. Increases in cetacean richness were predicted above 40° latitude in both hemispheres, while decreases in both pinniped and cetacean richness were expected at lower latitudes. Our results show how species distribution models can be applied to explore broad patterns of marine biodiversity worldwide for taxa for which limited distributional data are available. PMID:21625431

  16. Second-generation environmental sequencing unmasks marine metazoan biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Fonseca, Vera G; Carvalho, Gary R; Sung, Way; Johnson, Harriet F; Power, Deborah M; Neill, Simon P; Packer, Margaret; Blaxter, Mark L; Lambshead, P John D; Thomas, W Kelley; Creer, Simon

    2010-10-19

    Biodiversity is of crucial importance for ecosystem functioning, sustainability and resilience, but the magnitude and organization of marine diversity at a range of spatial and taxonomic scales are undefined. In this paper, we use second-generation sequencing to unmask putatively diverse marine metazoan biodiversity in a Scottish temperate benthic ecosystem. We show that remarkable differences in diversity occurred at microgeographical scales and refute currently accepted ecological and taxonomic paradigms of meiofaunal identity, rank abundance and concomitant understanding of trophic dynamics. Richness estimates from the current benchmarked Operational Clustering of Taxonomic Units from Parallel UltraSequencing analyses are broadly aligned with those derived from morphological assessments. However, the slope of taxon rarefaction curves for many phyla remains incomplete, suggesting that the true alpha diversity is likely to exceed current perceptions. The approaches provide a rapid, objective and cost-effective taxonomic framework for exploring links between ecosystem structure and function of all hitherto intractable, but ecologically important, communities.

  17. Second-generation environmental sequencing unmasks marine metazoan biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Fonseca, Vera G.; Carvalho, Gary R.; Sung, Way; Johnson, Harriet F.; Power, Deborah M.; Neill, Simon P.; Packer, Margaret; Blaxter, Mark L.; Lambshead, P. John D.; Thomas, W. Kelley; Creer, Simon

    2010-01-01

    Biodiversity is of crucial importance for ecosystem functioning, sustainability and resilience, but the magnitude and organization of marine diversity at a range of spatial and taxonomic scales are undefined. In this paper, we use second-generation sequencing to unmask putatively diverse marine metazoan biodiversity in a Scottish temperate benthic ecosystem. We show that remarkable differences in diversity occurred at microgeographical scales and refute currently accepted ecological and taxonomic paradigms of meiofaunal identity, rank abundance and concomitant understanding of trophic dynamics. Richness estimates from the current benchmarked Operational Clustering of Taxonomic Units from Parallel UltraSequencing analyses are broadly aligned with those derived from morphological assessments. However, the slope of taxon rarefaction curves for many phyla remains incomplete, suggesting that the true alpha diversity is likely to exceed current perceptions. The approaches provide a rapid, objective and cost-effective taxonomic framework for exploring links between ecosystem structure and function of all hitherto intractable, but ecologically important, communities. PMID:20981026

  18. An overview of marine biodiversity in United States waters.

    PubMed

    Fautin, Daphne; Dalton, Penelope; Incze, Lewis S; Leong, Jo-Ann C; Pautzke, Clarence; Rosenberg, Andrew; Sandifer, Paul; Sedberry, George; Tunnell, John W; Abbott, Isabella; Brainard, Russell E; Brodeur, Melissa; Eldredge, Lucius G; Feldman, Michael; Moretzsohn, Fabio; Vroom, Peter S; Wainstein, Michelle; Wolff, Nicholas

    2010-01-01

    Marine biodiversity of the United States (U.S.) is extensively documented, but data assembled by the United States National Committee for the Census of Marine Life demonstrate that even the most complete taxonomic inventories are based on records scattered in space and time. The best-known taxa are those of commercial importance. Body size is directly correlated with knowledge of a species, and knowledge also diminishes with distance from shore and depth. Measures of biodiversity other than species diversity, such as ecosystem and genetic diversity, are poorly documented. Threats to marine biodiversity in the U.S. are the same as those for most of the world: overexploitation of living resources; reduced water quality; coastal development; shipping; invasive species; rising temperature and concentrations of carbon dioxide in the surface ocean, and other changes that may be consequences of global change, including shifting currents; increased number and size of hypoxic or anoxic areas; and increased number and duration of harmful algal blooms. More information must be obtained through field and laboratory research and monitoring that involve innovative sampling techniques (such as genetics and acoustics), but data that already exist must be made accessible. And all data must have a temporal component so trends can be identified. As data are compiled, techniques must be developed to make certain that scales are compatible, to combine and reconcile data collected for various purposes with disparate gear, and to automate taxonomic changes. Information on biotic and abiotic elements of the environment must be interactively linked. Impediments to assembling existing data and collecting new data on marine biodiversity include logistical problems as well as shortages in finances and taxonomic expertise. PMID:20689852

  19. An overview of marine biodiversity in United States waters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fautin, Daphne G.; Delton, Penelope; Incze, Lewis S.; Leong, Jo-Ann C.; Pautzke, Clarence; Rosenberg, Andrew A.; Sandifer, Paul; Sedberry, George R.; Tunnell, John W.; Abbott, Isabella; Brainard, Russell E.; Brodeur, Melissa; Eldredge, Lucius G.; Feldman, Michael; Moretzsohn, Fabio; Vroom, Peter S.; Wainstein, Michelle; Wolff, Nicholas

    2010-01-01

    Marine biodiversity of the United States (U.S.) is extensively documented, but data assembled by the United States National Committee for the Census of Marine Life demonstrate that even the most complete taxonomic inventories are based on records scattered in space and time. The best-known taxa are those of commercial importance. Body size is directly correlated with knowledge of a species, and knowledge also diminishes with distance from shore and depth. Measures of biodiversity other than species diversity, such as ecosystem and genetic diversity, are poorly documented. Threats to marine biodiversity in the U.S. are the same as those for most of the world: overexploitation of living resources; reduced water quality; coastal development; shipping; invasive species; rising temperature and concentrations of carbon dioxide in the surface ocean, and other changes that may be consequences of global change, including shifting currents; increased number and size of hypoxic or anoxic areas; and increased number and duration of harmful algal blooms. More information must be obtained through field and laboratory research and monitoring that involve innovative sampling techniques (such as genetics and acoustics), but data that already exist must be made accessible. And all data must have a temporal component so trends can be identified. As data are compiled, techniques must be developed to make certain that scales are compatible, to combine and reconcile data collected for various purposes with disparate gear, and to automate taxonomic changes. Information on biotic and abiotic elements of the environment must be interactively linked. Impediments to assembling existing data and collecting new data on marine biodiversity include logistical problems as well as shortages in finances and taxonomic expertise.

  20. An Overview of Marine Biodiversity in United States Waters

    PubMed Central

    Fautin, Daphne; Dalton, Penelope; Incze, Lewis S.; Leong, Jo-Ann C.; Pautzke, Clarence; Rosenberg, Andrew; Sandifer, Paul; Sedberry, George; Tunnell, John W.; Abbott, Isabella; Brainard, Russell E.; Brodeur, Melissa; Eldredge, Lucius G.; Feldman, Michael; Moretzsohn, Fabio; Vroom, Peter S.; Wainstein, Michelle; Wolff, Nicholas

    2010-01-01

    Marine biodiversity of the United States (U.S.) is extensively documented, but data assembled by the United States National Committee for the Census of Marine Life demonstrate that even the most complete taxonomic inventories are based on records scattered in space and time. The best-known taxa are those of commercial importance. Body size is directly correlated with knowledge of a species, and knowledge also diminishes with distance from shore and depth. Measures of biodiversity other than species diversity, such as ecosystem and genetic diversity, are poorly documented. Threats to marine biodiversity in the U.S. are the same as those for most of the world: overexploitation of living resources; reduced water quality; coastal development; shipping; invasive species; rising temperature and concentrations of carbon dioxide in the surface ocean, and other changes that may be consequences of global change, including shifting currents; increased number and size of hypoxic or anoxic areas; and increased number and duration of harmful algal blooms. More information must be obtained through field and laboratory research and monitoring that involve innovative sampling techniques (such as genetics and acoustics), but data that already exist must be made accessible. And all data must have a temporal component so trends can be identified. As data are compiled, techniques must be developed to make certain that scales are compatible, to combine and reconcile data collected for various purposes with disparate gear, and to automate taxonomic changes. Information on biotic and abiotic elements of the environment must be interactively linked. Impediments to assembling existing data and collecting new data on marine biodiversity include logistical problems as well as shortages in finances and taxonomic expertise. PMID:20689852

  1. The marine food chain in relation to biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Price, A R

    2001-10-19

    Biodiversity provides "raw materials" for the food chain and seafood production, and also influences the capacity of ecosystems to perform these and other services. Harvested marine seafood species now exceed 100 million t y(-1) and provide about 6% of all protein and 17% of animal protein consumed by humans. These resources include representatives from about nine biologically diverse groups of plants and animals. Fish account for most of the world"s marine catches, of which only 40 species are taken in abundance. Highest primary productivity and the richest fisheries are found within Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ). This narrow strip (200 nautical mile/370 km wide) is not only the site of coastal "food factories" but also the area associated with heaviest perturbation to the marine environment. Structural redundancy is evident in marine ecosystems, in that many species are interchangeable in the way they characterise assemblage composition. While there is probably functional redundancy within groups, the effects of species loss on ecosystem performance cannot be easily predicted. In particular, the degree to which biodiversity per se is needed for ecosystem services, including seafood/fishery production, is poorly understood. Many human activities, including unsustainable fishing and mariculture, lead to erosion of marine biodiversity. This can undermine the biophysical cornerstones of fisheries and have other undesirable environmental side effects. Of direct concern are "species effects", in particular the removal of target and non-target fishery species, as well as conservationally important fauna. Equally disrupting but less immediate are "ecosystem effects", such as fishing down the food web, following a shift from harvested species of high to low trophic level. Physical and biological disturbances from trawl nets and dynamite fishing on coral reefs can also severely impact ecosystem structure and function. "Broadscale" biological and social effects brought

  2. Functional consequences of realistic biodiversity changes in a marine ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Bracken, Matthew E. S.; Friberg, Sara E.; Gonzalez-Dorantes, Cirse A.; Williams, Susan L.

    2008-01-01

    Declines in biodiversity have prompted concern over the consequences of species loss for the goods and services provided by natural ecosystems. However, relatively few studies have evaluated the functional consequences of realistic, nonrandom changes in biodiversity. Instead, most designs have used randomly selected assemblages from a local species pool to construct diversity gradients. It is therefore difficult, based on current evidence, to predict the functional consequences of realistic declines in biodiversity. In this study, we used tide pool microcosms to demonstrate that the effects of real-world changes in biodiversity may be very different from those of random diversity changes. Specifically, we measured the relationship between the diversity of a seaweed assemblage and its ability to use nitrogen, a key limiting nutrient in nearshore marine systems. We quantified nitrogen uptake using both experimental and model seaweed assemblages and found that natural increases in diversity resulted in enhanced rates of nitrogen use, whereas random diversity changes had no effect on nitrogen uptake. Our results suggest that understanding the real-world consequences of declining biodiversity will require addressing changes in species performance along natural diversity gradients and understanding the relationships between species' susceptibility to loss and their contributions to ecosystem functioning. PMID:18195375

  3. The European Marine Strategy: Noise Monitoring in European Marine Waters from 2014.

    PubMed

    Dekeling, René; Tasker, Mark; Ainslie, Michael; Andersson, Mathias; André, Michel; Borsani, Fabrizio; Brensing, Karsten; Castellote, Manuel; Dalen, John; Folegot, Thomas; van der Graaf, Sandra; Leaper, Russell; Liebschner, Alexander; Pajala, Jukka; Robinson, Stephen; Sigray, Peter; Sutton, Gerry; Thomsen, Frank; Werner, Stefanie; Wittekind, Dietrich; Young, John V

    2016-01-01

    The European Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires European member states to develop strategies for their marine waters leading to programs of measures that achieve or maintain good environmental status (GES) in all European seas by 2020. An essential step toward reaching GES is the establishment of monitoring programs, enabling the state of marine waters to be assessed on a regular basis. A register for impulsive noise-generating activities would enable assessment of their cumulative impacts on wide temporal and spatial scales; monitoring of ambient noise would provide essential insight into current levels and any trend in European waters. PMID:26610961

  4. The European Marine Strategy: Noise Monitoring in European Marine Waters from 2014.

    PubMed

    Dekeling, René; Tasker, Mark; Ainslie, Michael; Andersson, Mathias; André, Michel; Borsani, Fabrizio; Brensing, Karsten; Castellote, Manuel; Dalen, John; Folegot, Thomas; van der Graaf, Sandra; Leaper, Russell; Liebschner, Alexander; Pajala, Jukka; Robinson, Stephen; Sigray, Peter; Sutton, Gerry; Thomsen, Frank; Werner, Stefanie; Wittekind, Dietrich; Young, John V

    2016-01-01

    The European Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires European member states to develop strategies for their marine waters leading to programs of measures that achieve or maintain good environmental status (GES) in all European seas by 2020. An essential step toward reaching GES is the establishment of monitoring programs, enabling the state of marine waters to be assessed on a regular basis. A register for impulsive noise-generating activities would enable assessment of their cumulative impacts on wide temporal and spatial scales; monitoring of ambient noise would provide essential insight into current levels and any trend in European waters.

  5. Interdependence of specialization and biodiversity in Phanerozoic marine invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Nürnberg, Sabine; Aberhan, Martin

    2015-03-17

    Studies of the dynamics of biodiversity often suggest that diversity has upper limits, but the complex interplay between ecological and evolutionary processes and the relative role of biotic and abiotic factors that set upper limits to diversity are poorly understood. Here we statistically assess the relationship between global biodiversity and the degree of habitat specialization of benthic marine invertebrates over the Phanerozoic eon. We show that variation in habitat specialization correlates positively with changes in global diversity, that is, times of high diversity coincide with more specialized faunas. We identify the diversity dynamics of specialists but not generalists, and origination rates but not extinction rates, as the main drivers of this ecological interdependence. Abiotic factors fail to show any significant relationship with specialization. Our findings suggest that the overall level of specialization and its fluctuations over evolutionary timescales are controlled by diversity-dependent processes--driven by interactions between organisms competing for finite resources.

  6. Marine Caves of the Mediterranean Sea: A Sponge Biodiversity Reservoir within a Biodiversity Hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Gerovasileiou, Vasilis; Voultsiadou, Eleni

    2012-01-01

    Marine caves are widely acknowledged for their unique biodiversity and constitute a typical feature of the Mediterranean coastline. Herein an attempt was made to evaluate the ecological significance of this particular ecosystem in the Mediterranean Sea, which is considered a biodiversity hotspot. This was accomplished by using Porifera, which dominate the rocky sublittoral substrata, as a reference group in a meta-analytical approach, combining primary research data from the Aegean Sea (eastern Mediterranean) with data derived from the literature. In total 311 species from all poriferan classes were recorded, representing 45.7% of the Mediterranean Porifera. Demospongiae and Homoscleromorpha are highly represented in marine caves at the family (88%), generic (70%), and species level (47.5%), the latter being the most favored group along with Dictyoceratida and Lithistida. Several rare and cave-exclusive species were reported from only one or few caves, indicating the fragmentation and peculiarity of this unique ecosystem. Species richness and phylogenetic diversity varied among Mediterranean areas; the former was positively correlated with research effort, being higher in the northern Mediterranean, while the latter was generally higher in caves than in the overall sponge assemblages of each area. Resemblance analysis among areas revealed that cavernicolous sponge assemblages followed a pattern quite similar to that of the overall Mediterranean assemblages. The same pattern was exhibited by the zoogeographic affinities of cave sponges: species with Atlanto-Mediterranean distribution and Mediterranean endemics prevailed (more than 40% each), 70% of them having warm-water affinities, since most caves were studied in shallow waters. According to our findings, Mediterranean marine caves appear to be important sponge biodiversity reservoirs of high representativeness and great scientific interest, deserving further detailed study and protection. PMID:22808070

  7. Biodiversity: invasions by marine life on plastic debris.

    PubMed

    Barnes, David K A

    2002-04-25

    Colonization by alien species poses one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. Here I investigate the colonization by marine organisms of drift debris deposited on the shores of 30 remote islands from the Arctic to the Antarctic (across all oceans) and find that human litter more than doubles the rafting opportunities for biota, particularly at high latitudes. Although the poles may be protected from invasion by freezing sea surface temperatures, these may be under threat as the fastest-warming areas anywhere are at these latitudes. PMID:11976671

  8. Economic growth and marine biodiversity: influence of human social structure on decline of marine trophic levels.

    PubMed

    Clausen, Rebecca; York, Richard

    2008-04-01

    We assessed the effects of economic growth, urbanization, and human population size on marine biodiversity. We used the mean trophic level (MTL) of marine catch as an indicator of marine biodiversity and conducted cross-national time-series analyses (1960-2003) of 102 nations to investigate human social influences on fish catch and trends in MTL. We constructed path models to examine direct and indirect effects relating to marine catch and MTL. Nations' MTLs declined with increased economic growth, increased urbanization, and increased population size, in part because of associated increased catch. These findings contradict the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis, which claims that economic modernization will reduce human impact on the environment. To make informed decisions on issues of marine resource management, policy makers, nonprofit entities, and professional societies must recognize the need to include social analyses in overall conservation-research strategies. The challenge is to utilize the socioeconomic and ecological research in the service of a comprehensive marine-conservation movement.

  9. Antarctic marine biodiversity and deep-sea hydrothermal vents.

    PubMed

    Chown, Steven L

    2012-01-01

    The diversity of many marine benthic groups is unlike that of most other taxa. Rather than declining from the tropics to the poles, much of the benthos shows high diversity in the Southern Ocean. Moreover, many species are unique to the Antarctic region. Recent work has shown that this is also true of the communities of Antarctic deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Vent ecosystems have been documented from many sites across the globe, associated with the thermally and chemically variable habitats found around these, typically high temperature, streams that are rich in reduced compounds and polymetallic sulphides. The animal communities of the East Scotia Ridge vent ecosystems are very different to those elsewhere, though the microbiota, which form the basis of vent food webs, show less differentiation. Much of the biological significance of deep-sea hydrothermal vents lies in their biodiversity, the diverse biochemistry of their bacteria, the remarkable symbioses among many of the marine animals and these bacteria, and the prospects that investigations of these systems hold for understanding the conditions that may have led to the first appearance of life. The discovery of diverse and unusual Antarctic hydrothermal vent ecosystems provides opportunities for new understanding in these fields. Moreover, the Antarctic vents south of 60°S benefit from automatic conservation under the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources and the Antarctic Treaty. Other deep-sea hydrothermal vents located in international waters are not protected and may be threatened by growing interests in deep-sea mining.

  10. Climate velocity and the future global redistribution of marine biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Molinos, Jorge; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Schoeman, David S.; Brown, Christopher J.; Kiessling, Wolfgang; Moore, Pippa J.; Pandolfi, John M.; Poloczanska, Elvira S.; Richardson, Anthony J.; Burrows, Michael T.

    2016-01-01

    Anticipating the effect of climate change on biodiversity, in particular on changes in community composition, is crucial for adaptive ecosystem management but remains a critical knowledge gap. Here, we use climate velocity trajectories, together with information on thermal tolerances and habitat preferences, to project changes in global patterns of marine species richness and community composition under IPCC Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 4.5 and 8.5. Our simple, intuitive approach emphasizes climate connectivity, and enables us to model over 12 times as many species as previous studies. We find that range expansions prevail over contractions for both RCPs up to 2100, producing a net local increase in richness globally, and temporal changes in composition, driven by the redistribution rather than the loss of diversity. Conversely, widespread invasions homogenize present-day communities across multiple regions. High extirpation rates are expected regionally (for example, Indo-Pacific), particularly under RCP8.5, leading to strong decreases in richness and the anticipated formation of no-analogue communities where invasions are common. The spatial congruence of these patterns with contemporary human impacts highlights potential areas of future conservation concern. These results strongly suggest that the millennial stability of current global marine diversity patterns, against which conservation plans are assessed, will change rapidly over the course of the century in response to ocean warming.

  11. Antarctic Marine Biodiversity and Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vents

    PubMed Central

    Chown, Steven L.

    2012-01-01

    The diversity of many marine benthic groups is unlike that of most other taxa. Rather than declining from the tropics to the poles, much of the benthos shows high diversity in the Southern Ocean. Moreover, many species are unique to the Antarctic region. Recent work has shown that this is also true of the communities of Antarctic deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Vent ecosystems have been documented from many sites across the globe, associated with the thermally and chemically variable habitats found around these, typically high temperature, streams that are rich in reduced compounds and polymetallic sulphides. The animal communities of the East Scotia Ridge vent ecosystems are very different to those elsewhere, though the microbiota, which form the basis of vent food webs, show less differentiation. Much of the biological significance of deep-sea hydrothermal vents lies in their biodiversity, the diverse biochemistry of their bacteria, the remarkable symbioses among many of the marine animals and these bacteria, and the prospects that investigations of these systems hold for understanding the conditions that may have led to the first appearance of life. The discovery of diverse and unusual Antarctic hydrothermal vent ecosystems provides opportunities for new understanding in these fields. Moreover, the Antarctic vents south of 60°S benefit from automatic conservation under the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources and the Antarctic Treaty. Other deep-sea hydrothermal vents located in international waters are not protected and may be threatened by growing interests in deep-sea mining. PMID:22235192

  12. Mediterranean marine biodiversity under threat: Reviewing influence of marine litter on species.

    PubMed

    Deudero, Salud; Alomar, Carme

    2015-09-15

    The Mediterranean Sea is one of the most polluted seas worldwide, especially with regard to plastics. The presence of this emerging man made contaminant in marine environments precludes large effects and interactions with species exposed to massive litter quantities. In this review, available data of floating and seafloor litter around Mediterranean sub-basins are reported. A review of scientific literature on the interaction of plastic with marine biota resulted in the identification of 134 species, several taxa and feeding strategies affected from 1986 to 2014. Data from 17,334 individuals showed different levels of ingestion and effects on catalogued IUCN species (marine mammals and sea turtles) in addition to several pelagic fish and elasmobranchs. Biodiversity is certainly under threat, and knowledge of the extent of taxa affected is of concern considering the increasing plastic loads in the Mediterranean Sea and worldwide. PMID:26183308

  13. Force majeure: Will climate change affect our ability to attain Good Environmental Status for marine biodiversity?

    PubMed

    Elliott, Michael; Borja, Ángel; McQuatters-Gollop, Abigail; Mazik, Krysia; Birchenough, Silvana; Andersen, Jesper H; Painting, Suzanne; Peck, Myron

    2015-06-15

    The EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) requires that Good Environmental Status (GEnS), is achieved for European seas by 2020. These may deviate from GEnS, its 11 Descriptors, targets and baselines, due to endogenic managed pressures (from activities within an area) and externally due to exogenic unmanaged pressures (e.g. climate change). Conceptual models detail the likely or perceived changes expected on marine biodiversity and GEnS Descriptors in the light of climate change. We emphasise that marine management has to accommodate 'shifting baselines' caused by climate change particularly during GEnS monitoring, assessment and management and 'unbounded boundaries' given the migration and dispersal of highly-mobile species. We suggest climate change may prevent GEnS being met, but Member States may rebut legal challenges by claiming that this is outside its control, force majeure or due to 'natural causes' (Article 14 of the MSFD). The analysis is relevant to management of other global seas.

  14. Protecting marine biodiversity to preserve ecosystem functioning: A tribute to Carlo Heip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Peter; Warwick, Richard; Aller, Robert; Arvanitidis, Christos; Hewitt, Judi; Stal, Lucas; Vincx, Magda

    2015-04-01

    Carlo Heip was the highly respected Editor-In-Chief of the Journal of Sea Research until his untimely death on 15 February 2013. As a tribute, the Journal wished to organize a special volume in his honour, the scope of which would provide an overview of the current state of affairs and the future outlook of marine biodiversity, a field of research to which Carlo made a major contribution. The volume places special emphasis on how marine biodiversity links to ecosystem functioning. Authors were invited to address such issues as: Which ecosystem functions are vulnerable to loss of biodiversity and how is the relation causally structured? How do trophic and non-trophic networks in ecosystems function and how do they depend on biodiversity? What is the role of spatial structuring for biodiversity? What is the role of biodiversity in biogeochemical fluxes at different scales? What are the new frontiers in the study of marine biodiversity and how can functional aspects be integrated in them? In this approach we wanted to cover a broad range of organisms reflecting Carlo's interests, the whole marine area from coastal systems to the deep sea, and spatial scales from single locations to worldwide databases.

  15. The real bounty: marine biodiversity in the Pitcairn Islands.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Caselle, Jennifer E; Ballesteros, Enric; Brown, Eric K; Turchik, Alan; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    In 2012 we conducted an integrated ecological assessment of the marine environment of the Pitcairn Islands, which are four of the most remote islands in the world. The islands and atolls (Ducie, Henderson, Oeno, and Pitcairn) are situated in the central South Pacific, halfway between New Zealand and South America. We surveyed algae, corals, mobile invertebrates, and fishes at 97 sites between 5 and 30 m depth, and found 51 new records for algae, 23 for corals, and 15 for fishes. The structure of the ecological communities was correlated with age, isolation, and geomorphology of the four islands. Coral and algal assemblages were significantly different among islands with Ducie having the highest coral cover (56%) and Pitcairn dominated by erect macroalgae (42%). Fish biomass was dominated by top predators at Ducie (62% of total fish biomass) and at Henderson (35%). Herbivorous fishes dominated at Pitcairn, while Oeno showed a balanced fish trophic structure. We found high levels of regional endemism in the fish assemblages across the islands (45%), with the highest level observed at Ducie (56% by number). We conducted the first surveys of the deep habitats around the Pitcairn Islands using drop-cameras at 21 sites from depths of 78 to 1,585 m. We observed 57 fish species from the drop-cams, including rare species such as the false catshark (Pseudotriakis microdon) and several new undescribed species. In addition, we made observations of typically shallow reef sharks and other reef fishes at depths down to 300 m. Our findings highlight the uniqueness and high biodiversity value of the Pitcairn Islands as one of the least impacted in the Pacific, and suggest the need for immediate protection. PMID:24963808

  16. The real bounty: marine biodiversity in the Pitcairn Islands.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Caselle, Jennifer E; Ballesteros, Enric; Brown, Eric K; Turchik, Alan; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    In 2012 we conducted an integrated ecological assessment of the marine environment of the Pitcairn Islands, which are four of the most remote islands in the world. The islands and atolls (Ducie, Henderson, Oeno, and Pitcairn) are situated in the central South Pacific, halfway between New Zealand and South America. We surveyed algae, corals, mobile invertebrates, and fishes at 97 sites between 5 and 30 m depth, and found 51 new records for algae, 23 for corals, and 15 for fishes. The structure of the ecological communities was correlated with age, isolation, and geomorphology of the four islands. Coral and algal assemblages were significantly different among islands with Ducie having the highest coral cover (56%) and Pitcairn dominated by erect macroalgae (42%). Fish biomass was dominated by top predators at Ducie (62% of total fish biomass) and at Henderson (35%). Herbivorous fishes dominated at Pitcairn, while Oeno showed a balanced fish trophic structure. We found high levels of regional endemism in the fish assemblages across the islands (45%), with the highest level observed at Ducie (56% by number). We conducted the first surveys of the deep habitats around the Pitcairn Islands using drop-cameras at 21 sites from depths of 78 to 1,585 m. We observed 57 fish species from the drop-cams, including rare species such as the false catshark (Pseudotriakis microdon) and several new undescribed species. In addition, we made observations of typically shallow reef sharks and other reef fishes at depths down to 300 m. Our findings highlight the uniqueness and high biodiversity value of the Pitcairn Islands as one of the least impacted in the Pacific, and suggest the need for immediate protection.

  17. Australian deliberations on access to its terrestrial and marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Baker, J T; Bell, J D; Murphy, P T

    1996-04-01

    The predominantly developed country business principle that the natural resource is effectively free, or of very low monetary value, has been significantly challenged in recent years, not only through the recognition of the accelerated rate of depletion of native forest resources and of the space and food demands of increasing populations, but also through international conventions which deal with a wide range of topics from the rights of indigenous people to the Law of the Sea Convention. Australia, classified as a developed country, but located in a geographic region of many developing countries, has, in the past 25 years, demonstrated particular concern for the rights of the people of those countries, as well as for the rights of indigenous people of Australia. The practical international aspects were clearly exemplified in the time, from 1985, when the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) negotiated, within the National Cancer Institute (NCI) contract, that collections of biological samples in developing countries would be accompanied by an agreement to provide benefits arising from field work, and from any commercial product developments, to those countries. Australia, as a signatory to the Convention on Biological Diversity (Appendix I), continues to analyze the challenge presented by the need to freely exchange genetic resources of common value, e.g. food crops, while insuring an appropriate reward to developing and developed countries, should discoveries be made from their biological resources, which lead directly or indirectly, to high value commercial non-food products. The Prime Minister's Coordinating Committee on Science and Technology established a special working group to recommend on access to Australia's biodiversity. The report arising from the study, and other related issues, are discussed. PMID:9213621

  18. Australian deliberations on access to its terrestrial and marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Baker, J T; Bell, J D; Murphy, P T

    1996-04-01

    The predominantly developed country business principle that the natural resource is effectively free, or of very low monetary value, has been significantly challenged in recent years, not only through the recognition of the accelerated rate of depletion of native forest resources and of the space and food demands of increasing populations, but also through international conventions which deal with a wide range of topics from the rights of indigenous people to the Law of the Sea Convention. Australia, classified as a developed country, but located in a geographic region of many developing countries, has, in the past 25 years, demonstrated particular concern for the rights of the people of those countries, as well as for the rights of indigenous people of Australia. The practical international aspects were clearly exemplified in the time, from 1985, when the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) negotiated, within the National Cancer Institute (NCI) contract, that collections of biological samples in developing countries would be accompanied by an agreement to provide benefits arising from field work, and from any commercial product developments, to those countries. Australia, as a signatory to the Convention on Biological Diversity (Appendix I), continues to analyze the challenge presented by the need to freely exchange genetic resources of common value, e.g. food crops, while insuring an appropriate reward to developing and developed countries, should discoveries be made from their biological resources, which lead directly or indirectly, to high value commercial non-food products. The Prime Minister's Coordinating Committee on Science and Technology established a special working group to recommend on access to Australia's biodiversity. The report arising from the study, and other related issues, are discussed.

  19. The Real Bounty: Marine Biodiversity in the Pitcairn Islands

    PubMed Central

    Friedlander, Alan M.; Caselle, Jennifer E.; Ballesteros, Enric; Brown, Eric K.; Turchik, Alan; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    In 2012 we conducted an integrated ecological assessment of the marine environment of the Pitcairn Islands, which are four of the most remote islands in the world. The islands and atolls (Ducie, Henderson, Oeno, and Pitcairn) are situated in the central South Pacific, halfway between New Zealand and South America. We surveyed algae, corals, mobile invertebrates, and fishes at 97 sites between 5 and 30 m depth, and found 51 new records for algae, 23 for corals, and 15 for fishes. The structure of the ecological communities was correlated with age, isolation, and geomorphology of the four islands. Coral and algal assemblages were significantly different among islands with Ducie having the highest coral cover (56%) and Pitcairn dominated by erect macroalgae (42%). Fish biomass was dominated by top predators at Ducie (62% of total fish biomass) and at Henderson (35%). Herbivorous fishes dominated at Pitcairn, while Oeno showed a balanced fish trophic structure. We found high levels of regional endemism in the fish assemblages across the islands (45%), with the highest level observed at Ducie (56% by number). We conducted the first surveys of the deep habitats around the Pitcairn Islands using drop-cameras at 21 sites from depths of 78 to 1,585 m. We observed 57 fish species from the drop-cams, including rare species such as the false catshark (Pseudotriakis microdon) and several new undescribed species. In addition, we made observations of typically shallow reef sharks and other reef fishes at depths down to 300 m. Our findings highlight the uniqueness and high biodiversity value of the Pitcairn Islands as one of the least impacted in the Pacific, and suggest the need for immediate protection. PMID:24963808

  20. [Identification of marine and coastal biodiversity conservation priorities in Costa Rica].

    PubMed

    Alvarado, Juan José; Herrera, Bernal; Corrales, Lenin; Asch, Jenny; Paaby, Pía

    2011-06-01

    Costa Rica is recognized as one of the most diverse countries in species and ecosystems, in their terrestrial realm as well as in the marine. Besides this relevance, the country presents a delay on conservation and management of marine and coastal biodiversity, with respect to terrestrial. For 2006, the marine protected surface was 5,208.8 km2, with 331.5 km of coastline, in 20 protected areas. The country has made progress on the conservation priority sites identification for terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity, with few efforts on marine planning. This research presents the analysis and results of the gap identification process, for marine and coastal biodiversity conservation in the protected areas system of Costa Rica. The analysis was built with the spatial information available on the presence and distribution of coastal and marine biodiversity, the establishment of the conservation goals and a threat analysis over the ecological integrity of this biodiversity. The selection of high-priority sites was carried out using spatial optimization techniques and the superposition over the current shape of marine protected areas, in order to identify representation gaps. A total of 19,076 km2 of conservation gaps were indentified, with 1,323 km2 in the Caribbean and 17,753 km2 in the Pacific. Recommendations are aimed at planning and strengthening the marine protected areas system, using the gaps identified as a framework. It is expected that the results of this study would be the scientific base needed for planning and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in the country.

  1. New perspectives on sea use management: initial findings from European experience with marine spatial planning.

    PubMed

    Douvere, Fanny; Ehler, Charles N

    2009-01-01

    Increased development pressures on the marine environment and the potential for multiple use conflicts, arising as a result of the current expansion of offshore wind energy, fishing and aquaculture, dredging, mineral extraction, shipping, and the need to meet international and national commitments to biodiversity conservation, have led to increased interest in sea use planning with particular emphasis on marine spatial planning. Several European countries, on their own initiative or driven by the European Union's Marine Strategy and Maritime Policy, the Bergen Declaration of the North Sea Conference, and the EU Recommendation on Integrated Coastal Zone Management, have taken global leadership in implementing marine spatial planning. Belgium, The Netherlands, and Germany in the North Sea, and the United Kingdom in the Irish Sea, have already completed preliminary sea use plans and zoning proposals for marine areas within their national jurisdictions. This paper discusses the nature and context of marine spatial planning, the international legal and policy framework, and the increasing need for marine spatial planning in Europe. In addition, the authors review briefly three marine spatial planning initiatives in the North Sea and conclude with some initial lessons learned from these experiences.

  2. The role of sustained observations in tracking impacts of environmental change on marine biodiversity and ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Mieszkowska, N; Sugden, H; Firth, L B; Hawkins, S J

    2014-09-28

    Marine biodiversity currently faces unprecedented threats from multiple pressures arising from human activities. Global drivers such as climate change and ocean acidification interact with regional eutrophication, exploitation of commercial fish stocks and localized pressures including pollution, coastal development and the extraction of aggregates and fuel, causing alteration and degradation of habitats and communities. Segregating natural from anthropogenically induced change in marine ecosystems requires long-term, sustained observations of marine biota. In this review, we outline the history of biological recording in the coastal and shelf seas of the UK and Ireland and highlight where sustained observations have contributed new understanding of how anthropogenic activities have impacted on marine biodiversity. The contributions of sustained observations, from those collected at observatories, single station platforms and multiple-site programmes to the emergent field of multiple stressor impacts research, are discussed, along with implications for management and sustainable governance of marine resources in an era of unprecedented use of the marine environment.

  3. The role of sustained observations in tracking impacts of environmental change on marine biodiversity and ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Mieszkowska, N.; Sugden, H.; Firth, L. B.; Hawkins, S. J.

    2014-01-01

    Marine biodiversity currently faces unprecedented threats from multiple pressures arising from human activities. Global drivers such as climate change and ocean acidification interact with regional eutrophication, exploitation of commercial fish stocks and localized pressures including pollution, coastal development and the extraction of aggregates and fuel, causing alteration and degradation of habitats and communities. Segregating natural from anthropogenically induced change in marine ecosystems requires long-term, sustained observations of marine biota. In this review, we outline the history of biological recording in the coastal and shelf seas of the UK and Ireland and highlight where sustained observations have contributed new understanding of how anthropogenic activities have impacted on marine biodiversity. The contributions of sustained observations, from those collected at observatories, single station platforms and multiple-site programmes to the emergent field of multiple stressor impacts research, are discussed, along with implications for management and sustainable governance of marine resources in an era of unprecedented use of the marine environment. PMID:25157190

  4. Shortfalls in the global protected area network at representing marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Klein, Carissa J; Brown, Christopher J; Halpern, Benjamin S; Segan, Daniel B; McGowan, Jennifer; Beger, Maria; Watson, James E M

    2015-01-01

    The first international goal for establishing marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve the ocean's biodiversity was set in 2002. Since 2006, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has driven MPA establishment, with 193 parties committed to protecting >10% of marine environments globally by 2020, especially 'areas of particular importance for biodiversity' (Aichi target 11). This has resulted in nearly 10 million km(2) of new MPAs, a growth of ~360% in a decade. Unlike on land, it is not known how well protected areas capture marine biodiversity, leaving a significant gap in our understanding of existing MPAs and future protection requirements. We assess the overlap of global MPAs with the ranges of 17,348 marine species (fishes, mammals, invertebrates), and find that 97.4% of species have <10% of their ranges represented in stricter conservation classes. Almost all (99.8%) of the very poorly represented species (<2% coverage) are found within exclusive economic zones, suggesting an important role for particular nations to better protect biodiversity. Our results offer strategic guidance on where MPAs should be placed to support the CBD's overall goal to avert biodiversity loss. Achieving this goal is imperative for nature and humanity, as people depend on biodiversity for important and valuable services. PMID:26631984

  5. European Marine Observation Data Network - EMODnet Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manzella, Giuseppe M. R.; Novellino, Antonio; D'Angelo, Paolo; Gorringe, Patrick; Schaap, Dick; Pouliquen, Sylvie; Loubrieu, Thomas; Rickards, Lesley

    2015-04-01

    The EMODnet-Physics portal (www.emodnet-physics.eu) makes layers of physical data and their metadata available for use and contributes towards the definition of an operational European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet). It is based on a strong collaboration between EuroGOOS associates and its regional operational systems (ROOSs), and it is bringing together two very different marine communities: the "real time" ocean observing institute/centers and the National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODCs) that are in charge of ocean data validation, quality check and update for marine environmental monitoring. The EMODnet-Physics is a Marine Observation and Data Information System that provides a single point of access to near real time and historical achieved data (www.emodnet-physics.eu/map) it is built on existing infrastructure by adding value and avoiding any unless complexity, it provides data access to users, it is aimed at attracting new data holders, better and more data. With a long-term vision for a pan European Ocean Observation System sustainability, the EMODnet-Physics is supporting the coordination of the EuroGOOS Regional components and the empowerment and improvement of their data management infrastructure. In turn, EMODnet-Physics already implemented high-level interoperability features (WMS, Web catalogue, web services, etc…) to facilitate connection and data exchange with the ROOS and the Institutes within the ROOSs (www.emodnet-physics.eu/services). The on-going EMODnet-Physics structure delivers environmental marine physical data from the whole Europe (wave height and period, temperature of the water column, wind speed and direction, salinity of the water column, horizontal velocity of the water column, light attenuation, and sea level) as monitored by fixed stations, ARGO floats, drifting buoys, gliders, and ferry-boxes. It does provide discovering of data sets (both NRT - near real time - and Historical data sets), visualization and free

  6. Marine Communities on Oil Platforms in Gabon, West Africa: High Biodiversity Oases in a Low Biodiversity Environment

    PubMed Central

    Friedlander, Alan M.; Ballesteros, Enric; Fay, Michael; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    The marine biodiversity of Gabon, West Africa has not been well studied and is largely unknown. Our examination of marine communities associated with oil platforms in Gabon is the first scientific investigation of these structures and highlights the unique ecosystems associated with them. A number of species previously unknown to Gabonese waters were recorded during our surveys on these platforms. Clear distinctions in benthic communities were observed between older, larger platforms in the north and newer platforms to the south or closer to shore. The former were dominated by a solitary cup coral, Tubastraea sp., whereas the latter were dominated by the barnacle Megabalanus tintinnabulum, but with more diverse benthic assemblages compared to the northerly platforms. Previous work documented the presence of limited zooxanthellated scleractinian corals on natural rocky substrate in Gabon but none were recorded on platforms. Total estimated fish biomass on these platforms exceeded one ton at some locations and was dominated by barracuda (Sphyraena spp.), jacks (Carangids), and rainbow runner (Elagatis bipinnulata). Thirty-four percent of fish species observed on these platforms are new records for Gabon and 6% are new to tropical West Africa. Fish assemblages closely associated with platforms had distinct amphi-Atlantic affinities and platforms likely extend the distribution of these species into coastal West Africa. At least one potential invasive species, the snowflake coral (Carijoa riisei), was observed on the platforms. Oil platforms may act as stepping stones, increasing regional biodiversity and production but they may also be vectors for invasive species. Gabon is a world leader in terrestrial conservation with a network of protected areas covering >10% of the country. Oil exploration and biodiversity conservation currently co-exist in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems in Gabon. Efforts to increase marine protection in Gabon may benefit by including oil

  7. Marine communities on oil platforms in Gabon, West Africa: high biodiversity oases in a low biodiversity environment.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Ballesteros, Enric; Fay, Michael; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    The marine biodiversity of Gabon, West Africa has not been well studied and is largely unknown. Our examination of marine communities associated with oil platforms in Gabon is the first scientific investigation of these structures and highlights the unique ecosystems associated with them. A number of species previously unknown to Gabonese waters were recorded during our surveys on these platforms. Clear distinctions in benthic communities were observed between older, larger platforms in the north and newer platforms to the south or closer to shore. The former were dominated by a solitary cup coral, Tubastraea sp., whereas the latter were dominated by the barnacle Megabalanus tintinnabulum, but with more diverse benthic assemblages compared to the northerly platforms. Previous work documented the presence of limited zooxanthellated scleractinian corals on natural rocky substrate in Gabon but none were recorded on platforms. Total estimated fish biomass on these platforms exceeded one ton at some locations and was dominated by barracuda (Sphyraena spp.), jacks (Carangids), and rainbow runner (Elagatis bipinnulata). Thirty-four percent of fish species observed on these platforms are new records for Gabon and 6% are new to tropical West Africa. Fish assemblages closely associated with platforms had distinct amphi-Atlantic affinities and platforms likely extend the distribution of these species into coastal West Africa. At least one potential invasive species, the snowflake coral (Carijoa riisei), was observed on the platforms. Oil platforms may act as stepping stones, increasing regional biodiversity and production but they may also be vectors for invasive species. Gabon is a world leader in terrestrial conservation with a network of protected areas covering >10% of the country. Oil exploration and biodiversity conservation currently co-exist in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems in Gabon. Efforts to increase marine protection in Gabon may benefit by including oil

  8. Marine communities on oil platforms in Gabon, West Africa: high biodiversity oases in a low biodiversity environment.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Ballesteros, Enric; Fay, Michael; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    The marine biodiversity of Gabon, West Africa has not been well studied and is largely unknown. Our examination of marine communities associated with oil platforms in Gabon is the first scientific investigation of these structures and highlights the unique ecosystems associated with them. A number of species previously unknown to Gabonese waters were recorded during our surveys on these platforms. Clear distinctions in benthic communities were observed between older, larger platforms in the north and newer platforms to the south or closer to shore. The former were dominated by a solitary cup coral, Tubastraea sp., whereas the latter were dominated by the barnacle Megabalanus tintinnabulum, but with more diverse benthic assemblages compared to the northerly platforms. Previous work documented the presence of limited zooxanthellated scleractinian corals on natural rocky substrate in Gabon but none were recorded on platforms. Total estimated fish biomass on these platforms exceeded one ton at some locations and was dominated by barracuda (Sphyraena spp.), jacks (Carangids), and rainbow runner (Elagatis bipinnulata). Thirty-four percent of fish species observed on these platforms are new records for Gabon and 6% are new to tropical West Africa. Fish assemblages closely associated with platforms had distinct amphi-Atlantic affinities and platforms likely extend the distribution of these species into coastal West Africa. At least one potential invasive species, the snowflake coral (Carijoa riisei), was observed on the platforms. Oil platforms may act as stepping stones, increasing regional biodiversity and production but they may also be vectors for invasive species. Gabon is a world leader in terrestrial conservation with a network of protected areas covering >10% of the country. Oil exploration and biodiversity conservation currently co-exist in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems in Gabon. Efforts to increase marine protection in Gabon may benefit by including oil

  9. Shortfalls in the global protected area network at representing marine biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Carissa J.; Brown, Christopher J.; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Segan, Daniel B.; McGowan, Jennifer; Beger, Maria; Watson, James E.M.

    2015-01-01

    The first international goal for establishing marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve the ocean’s biodiversity was set in 2002. Since 2006, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has driven MPA establishment, with 193 parties committed to protecting >10% of marine environments globally by 2020, especially ‘areas of particular importance for biodiversity’ (Aichi target 11). This has resulted in nearly 10 million km2 of new MPAs, a growth of ~360% in a decade. Unlike on land, it is not known how well protected areas capture marine biodiversity, leaving a significant gap in our understanding of existing MPAs and future protection requirements. We assess the overlap of global MPAs with the ranges of 17,348 marine species (fishes, mammals, invertebrates), and find that 97.4% of species have <10% of their ranges represented in stricter conservation classes. Almost all (99.8%) of the very poorly represented species (<2% coverage) are found within exclusive economic zones, suggesting an important role for particular nations to better protect biodiversity. Our results offer strategic guidance on where MPAs should be placed to support the CBD’s overall goal to avert biodiversity loss. Achieving this goal is imperative for nature and humanity, as people depend on biodiversity for important and valuable services. PMID:26631984

  10. Shortfalls in the global protected area network at representing marine biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klein, Carissa J.; Brown, Christopher J.; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Segan, Daniel B.; McGowan, Jennifer; Beger, Maria; Watson, James E. M.

    2015-12-01

    The first international goal for establishing marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve the ocean’s biodiversity was set in 2002. Since 2006, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has driven MPA establishment, with 193 parties committed to protecting >10% of marine environments globally by 2020, especially ‘areas of particular importance for biodiversity’ (Aichi target 11). This has resulted in nearly 10 million km2 of new MPAs, a growth of ~360% in a decade. Unlike on land, it is not known how well protected areas capture marine biodiversity, leaving a significant gap in our understanding of existing MPAs and future protection requirements. We assess the overlap of global MPAs with the ranges of 17,348 marine species (fishes, mammals, invertebrates), and find that 97.4% of species have <10% of their ranges represented in stricter conservation classes. Almost all (99.8%) of the very poorly represented species (<2% coverage) are found within exclusive economic zones, suggesting an important role for particular nations to better protect biodiversity. Our results offer strategic guidance on where MPAs should be placed to support the CBD’s overall goal to avert biodiversity loss. Achieving this goal is imperative for nature and humanity, as people depend on biodiversity for important and valuable services.

  11. Role of DNA barcoding in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation: An update.

    PubMed

    Trivedi, Subrata; Aloufi, Abdulhadi A; Ansari, Abid A; Ghosh, Sankar K

    2016-03-01

    More than two third area of our planet is covered by oceans and assessment of marine biodiversity is a challenging task. With the increasing global population, there is a tendency to exploit marine resources for food, energy and other requirements. This puts pressure on the fragile marine environment and necessitates sustainable conservation efforts. Marine species identification using traditional taxonomical methods is often burdened with taxonomic controversies. Here we discuss the comparatively new concept of DNA barcoding and its significance in marine perspective. This molecular technique can be useful in the assessment of cryptic species which is widespread in marine environment and linking the different life cycle stages to the adult which is difficult to accomplish in the marine ecosystem. Other advantages of DNA barcoding include authentication and safety assessment of seafood, wildlife forensics, conservation genetics and detection of invasive alien species (IAS). Global DNA barcoding efforts in the marine habitat include MarBOL, CeDAMar, CMarZ, SHARK-BOL, etc. An overview on DNA barcoding of different marine groups ranging from the microbes to mammals is revealed. In conjugation with newer and faster techniques like high-throughput sequencing, DNA barcoding can serve as an effective modern tool in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation.

  12. Role of DNA barcoding in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation: An update.

    PubMed

    Trivedi, Subrata; Aloufi, Abdulhadi A; Ansari, Abid A; Ghosh, Sankar K

    2016-03-01

    More than two third area of our planet is covered by oceans and assessment of marine biodiversity is a challenging task. With the increasing global population, there is a tendency to exploit marine resources for food, energy and other requirements. This puts pressure on the fragile marine environment and necessitates sustainable conservation efforts. Marine species identification using traditional taxonomical methods is often burdened with taxonomic controversies. Here we discuss the comparatively new concept of DNA barcoding and its significance in marine perspective. This molecular technique can be useful in the assessment of cryptic species which is widespread in marine environment and linking the different life cycle stages to the adult which is difficult to accomplish in the marine ecosystem. Other advantages of DNA barcoding include authentication and safety assessment of seafood, wildlife forensics, conservation genetics and detection of invasive alien species (IAS). Global DNA barcoding efforts in the marine habitat include MarBOL, CeDAMar, CMarZ, SHARK-BOL, etc. An overview on DNA barcoding of different marine groups ranging from the microbes to mammals is revealed. In conjugation with newer and faster techniques like high-throughput sequencing, DNA barcoding can serve as an effective modern tool in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation. PMID:26980996

  13. Role of DNA barcoding in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation: An update

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Subrata; Aloufi, Abdulhadi A.; Ansari, Abid A.; Ghosh, Sankar K.

    2015-01-01

    More than two third area of our planet is covered by oceans and assessment of marine biodiversity is a challenging task. With the increasing global population, there is a tendency to exploit marine resources for food, energy and other requirements. This puts pressure on the fragile marine environment and necessitates sustainable conservation efforts. Marine species identification using traditional taxonomical methods is often burdened with taxonomic controversies. Here we discuss the comparatively new concept of DNA barcoding and its significance in marine perspective. This molecular technique can be useful in the assessment of cryptic species which is widespread in marine environment and linking the different life cycle stages to the adult which is difficult to accomplish in the marine ecosystem. Other advantages of DNA barcoding include authentication and safety assessment of seafood, wildlife forensics, conservation genetics and detection of invasive alien species (IAS). Global DNA barcoding efforts in the marine habitat include MarBOL, CeDAMar, CMarZ, SHARK-BOL, etc. An overview on DNA barcoding of different marine groups ranging from the microbes to mammals is revealed. In conjugation with newer and faster techniques like high-throughput sequencing, DNA barcoding can serve as an effective modern tool in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation. PMID:26980996

  14. Open exchange of scientific knowledge and European copyright: The case of biodiversity information.

    PubMed

    Egloff, Willi; Patterson, David J; Agosti, Donat; Hagedorn, Gregor

    2014-01-01

    Background. The 7(th) Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development is helping the European Union to prepare for an integrative system for intelligent management of biodiversity knowledge. The infrastructure that is envisaged and that will be further developed within the Programme "Horizon 2020" aims to provide open and free access to taxonomic information to anyone with a requirement for biodiversity data, without the need for individual consent of other persons or institutions. Open and free access to information will foster the re-use and improve the quality of data, will accelerate research, and will promote new types of research. Progress towards the goal of free and open access to content is hampered by numerous technical, economic, sociological, legal, and other factors. The present article addresses barriers to the open exchange of biodiversity knowledge that arise from European laws, in particular European legislation on copyright and database protection rights. We present a legal point of view as to what will be needed to bring distributed information together and facilitate its re-use by data mining, integration into semantic knowledge systems, and similar techniques. We address exceptions and limitations of copyright or database protection within Europe, and we point to the importance of data use agreements. We illustrate how exceptions and limitations have been transformed into national legislations within some European states to create inconsistencies that impede access to biodiversity information. Conclusions. The legal situation within the EU is unsatisfactory because there are inconsistencies among states that hamper the deployment of an open biodiversity knowledge management system. Scientists within the EU who work with copyright protected works or with protected databases have to be aware of regulations that vary from country to country. This is a major stumbling block to international collaboration and is an impediment to the

  15. Open exchange of scientific knowledge and European copyright: The case of biodiversity information

    PubMed Central

    Egloff, Willi; Patterson, David J.; Agosti, Donat; Hagedorn, Gregor

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background. The 7th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development is helping the European Union to prepare for an integrative system for intelligent management of biodiversity knowledge. The infrastructure that is envisaged and that will be further developed within the Programme “Horizon 2020” aims to provide open and free access to taxonomic information to anyone with a requirement for biodiversity data, without the need for individual consent of other persons or institutions. Open and free access to information will foster the re-use and improve the quality of data, will accelerate research, and will promote new types of research. Progress towards the goal of free and open access to content is hampered by numerous technical, economic, sociological, legal, and other factors. The present article addresses barriers to the open exchange of biodiversity knowledge that arise from European laws, in particular European legislation on copyright and database protection rights. We present a legal point of view as to what will be needed to bring distributed information together and facilitate its re-use by data mining, integration into semantic knowledge systems, and similar techniques. We address exceptions and limitations of copyright or database protection within Europe, and we point to the importance of data use agreements. We illustrate how exceptions and limitations have been transformed into national legislations within some European states to create inconsistencies that impede access to biodiversity information. Conclusions. The legal situation within the EU is unsatisfactory because there are inconsistencies among states that hamper the deployment of an open biodiversity knowledge management system. Scientists within the EU who work with copyright protected works or with protected databases have to be aware of regulations that vary from country to country. This is a major stumbling block to international collaboration and is an

  16. Recent Trends in Local-Scale Marine Biodiversity Reflect Community Structure and Human Impacts.

    PubMed

    Elahi, Robin; O'Connor, Mary I; Byrnes, Jarrett E K; Dunic, Jillian; Eriksson, Britas Klemens; Hensel, Marc J S; Kearns, Patrick J

    2015-07-20

    The modern biodiversity crisis reflects global extinctions and local introductions. Human activities have dramatically altered rates and scales of processes that regulate biodiversity at local scales. Reconciling the threat of global biodiversity loss with recent evidence of stability at fine spatial scales is a major challenge and requires a nuanced approach to biodiversity change that integrates ecological understanding. With a new dataset of 471 diversity time series spanning from 1962 to 2015 from marine coastal ecosystems, we tested (1) whether biodiversity changed at local scales in recent decades, and (2) whether we can ignore ecological context (e.g., proximate human impacts, trophic level, spatial scale) and still make informative inferences regarding local change. We detected a predominant signal of increasing species richness in coastal systems since 1962 in our dataset, though net species loss was associated with localized effects of anthropogenic impacts. Our geographically extensive dataset is unlikely to be a random sample of marine coastal habitats; impacted sites (3% of our time series) were underrepresented relative to their global presence. These local-scale patterns do not contradict the prospect of accelerating global extinctions but are consistent with local species loss in areas with direct human impacts and increases in diversity due to invasions and range expansions in lower impact areas. Attempts to detect and understand local biodiversity trends are incomplete without information on local human activities and ecological context. PMID:26166784

  17. Recent Trends in Local-Scale Marine Biodiversity Reflect Community Structure and Human Impacts.

    PubMed

    Elahi, Robin; O'Connor, Mary I; Byrnes, Jarrett E K; Dunic, Jillian; Eriksson, Britas Klemens; Hensel, Marc J S; Kearns, Patrick J

    2015-07-20

    The modern biodiversity crisis reflects global extinctions and local introductions. Human activities have dramatically altered rates and scales of processes that regulate biodiversity at local scales. Reconciling the threat of global biodiversity loss with recent evidence of stability at fine spatial scales is a major challenge and requires a nuanced approach to biodiversity change that integrates ecological understanding. With a new dataset of 471 diversity time series spanning from 1962 to 2015 from marine coastal ecosystems, we tested (1) whether biodiversity changed at local scales in recent decades, and (2) whether we can ignore ecological context (e.g., proximate human impacts, trophic level, spatial scale) and still make informative inferences regarding local change. We detected a predominant signal of increasing species richness in coastal systems since 1962 in our dataset, though net species loss was associated with localized effects of anthropogenic impacts. Our geographically extensive dataset is unlikely to be a random sample of marine coastal habitats; impacted sites (3% of our time series) were underrepresented relative to their global presence. These local-scale patterns do not contradict the prospect of accelerating global extinctions but are consistent with local species loss in areas with direct human impacts and increases in diversity due to invasions and range expansions in lower impact areas. Attempts to detect and understand local biodiversity trends are incomplete without information on local human activities and ecological context.

  18. Metagenetic tools for the census of marine meiofaunal biodiversity: An overview.

    PubMed

    Carugati, Laura; Corinaldesi, Cinzia; Dell'Anno, Antonio; Danovaro, Roberto

    2015-12-01

    Marine organisms belonging to meiofauna (size range: 20-500 μm) are amongst the most abundant and highly diversified metazoans on Earth including 22 over 35 known animal Phyla and accounting for more than 2/3 of the abundance of metazoan organisms. In any marine system, meiofauna play a key role in the functioning of the food webs and sustain important ecological processes. Estimates of meiofaunal biodiversity have been so far almost exclusively based on morphological analyses, but the very small size of these organisms and, in some cases, the insufficient morphological distinctive features limit considerably the census of the biodiversity of this component. Molecular approaches recently applied also to small invertebrates (including meiofauna) can offer a new momentum for the census of meiofaunal biodiversity. Here, we provide an overview on the application of metagenetic approaches based on the use of next generation sequencing platforms to study meiofaunal biodiversity, with a special focus on marine nematodes. Our overview shows that, although such approaches can represent a useful tool for the census of meiofaunal biodiversity, there are still different shortcomings and pitfalls that prevent their extensive use without the support of the classical taxonomic identification. Future investigations are needed to address these problems and to provide a good match between the contrasting findings emerging from classical taxonomic and molecular/bioinformatic tools.

  19. Metagenetic tools for the census of marine meiofaunal biodiversity: An overview.

    PubMed

    Carugati, Laura; Corinaldesi, Cinzia; Dell'Anno, Antonio; Danovaro, Roberto

    2015-12-01

    Marine organisms belonging to meiofauna (size range: 20-500 μm) are amongst the most abundant and highly diversified metazoans on Earth including 22 over 35 known animal Phyla and accounting for more than 2/3 of the abundance of metazoan organisms. In any marine system, meiofauna play a key role in the functioning of the food webs and sustain important ecological processes. Estimates of meiofaunal biodiversity have been so far almost exclusively based on morphological analyses, but the very small size of these organisms and, in some cases, the insufficient morphological distinctive features limit considerably the census of the biodiversity of this component. Molecular approaches recently applied also to small invertebrates (including meiofauna) can offer a new momentum for the census of meiofaunal biodiversity. Here, we provide an overview on the application of metagenetic approaches based on the use of next generation sequencing platforms to study meiofaunal biodiversity, with a special focus on marine nematodes. Our overview shows that, although such approaches can represent a useful tool for the census of meiofaunal biodiversity, there are still different shortcomings and pitfalls that prevent their extensive use without the support of the classical taxonomic identification. Future investigations are needed to address these problems and to provide a good match between the contrasting findings emerging from classical taxonomic and molecular/bioinformatic tools. PMID:25957694

  20. European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) for Geology - A sea-bed substrate map for European marine areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alanen, Ulla; Kaskela, Anu; Kotilainen, Aarno; Stevenson, Alan; Partners, EMODnet-Geology 2

    2014-05-01

    The European Union's (EU) Marine Strategy Framework Directive aims to achieve good environmental status of the EU's marine waters by 2020. In order imply effective management of the broad marine areas spatial datasets covering all European marine areas are needed. In response the European Commission has adopted the European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) to assemble fragmented marine data products into publicly available datasets covering broad areas. The marine departments of the geological surveys of Europe (through the Association of European Geological Surveys - Euro GeoSurveys) took an initiative and launched the first EMODnet -Geology project (2009-2012) to compile and harmonize information from the Baltic Sea, Greater North Sea and Celtic Sea at the scale of 1:1 000 000 (http://www.emodnet-geology.eu/). The second phase of the EMODnet -Geology project started in 2013 with an expanded sea area. The 36 members from 31 countries will compile marine geological information at a scale of 1:250,000 from all European sea areas (e.g. the White Sea, Barents Sea, the Iberian Coast, and the Mediterranean Sea within EU waters). The project includes collecting and harmonizing the first sea-bed substrate map for the European Seas. The data will be essential not only for geologists but also for others interested in marine sediments like marine managers and habitat mappers. A 1:250,000 GIS layer on sea-bed substrates will be delivered in the OneGeology-Europe portal, replacing and upgrading the existing 1:1 million map layer from the previous phase. A confidence assessment will be applied to all areas to identify the information that underpins the geological interpretations.

  1. Ecosystem service provision: an operational way for marine biodiversity conservation and management.

    PubMed

    Cognetti, Giuseppe; Maltagliati, Ferruccio

    2010-11-01

    Since no extensive conceptual framework has been developed on the issues of ecosystem service (ES) and service provider (SP) in the marine environment, we have made an attempt to apply these to the conservation and management of marine biodiversity. Within this context, an accurate individuation of SPs, namely the biological component of a given ecosystem that supports human activities is fundamental. SPs are the agents responsible for making the ES-based approach operational. The application of these concepts to the marine environment should be based on an model different to the terrestrial one. In the latter, the basic model envisages a matrix of a human-altered landscape with fragments of original biodiversity; conversely, in the marine environment the model provides fragments where human activities are carried out and the matrix is represented by the original biodiversity. We have identified three main classes of ES provision: in natural, disturbed and human-controlled environments. Economic valuation of marine ESs is an essential condition for making conservation strategies financially sustainable, as it may stimulate the perceived need for investing in protection and exploitation of marine resources. PMID:20933248

  2. Impact of biodiversity loss on production in complex marine food webs mitigated by prey-release

    PubMed Central

    Fung, Tak; Farnsworth, Keith D.; Reid, David G.; Rossberg, Axel G.

    2015-01-01

    Public concern over biodiversity loss is often rationalized as a threat to ecosystem functioning, but biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF) relations are hard to empirically quantify at large scales. We use a realistic marine food-web model, resolving species over five trophic levels, to study how total fish production changes with species richness. This complex model predicts that BEF relations, on average, follow simple Michaelis–Menten curves when species are randomly deleted. These are shaped mainly by release of fish from predation, rather than the release from competition expected from simpler communities. Ordering species deletions by decreasing body mass or trophic level, representing ‘fishing down the food web’, accentuates prey-release effects and results in unimodal relationships. In contrast, simultaneous unselective harvesting diminishes these effects and produces an almost linear BEF relation, with maximum multispecies fisheries yield at ≈40% of initial species richness. These findings have important implications for the valuation of marine biodiversity. PMID:25799523

  3. Future vulnerability of marine biodiversity compared with contemporary and past changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaugrand, Grégory; Edwards, Martin; Raybaud, Virginie; Goberville, Eric; Kirby, Richard R.

    2015-07-01

    Many studies have implied significant effects of global climate change on marine life. Setting these alterations into the context of historical natural change has not been attempted so far, however. Here, using a theoretical framework, we estimate the sensitivity of marine pelagic biodiversity to temperature change and evaluate its past (mid-Pliocene and Last Glacial Maximum (LGM)), contemporaneous (1960-2013) and future (2081-2100 4 scenarios of warming) vulnerability. Our biodiversity reconstructions were highly correlated to real data for several pelagic taxa for the contemporary and the past (LGM and mid-Pliocene) periods. Our results indicate that local species loss will be a prominent phenomenon of climate warming in permanently stratified regions, and that local species invasion will prevail in temperate and polar biomes under all climate change scenarios. Although a small amount of warming under the RCP2.6 scenario is expected to have a minor influence on marine pelagic biodiversity, moderate warming (RCP4.5) will increase by threefold the changes already observed over the past 50 years. Of most concern is that severe warming (RCP6.0 and 8.5) will affect marine pelagic biodiversity to a greater extent than temperature changes that took place between either the LGM or the mid-Pliocene and today, over an area of between 50 (RCP6.0: 46.9-52.4%) and 70% (RCP8.5: 69.4-73.4%) of the global ocean.

  4. Assessment of marine ecosystem services indicators: Experiences and lessons learned from 14 European case studies.

    PubMed

    Lillebø, Ana I; Somma, Francesca; Norén, Katja; Gonçalves, Jorge; Alves, M Fátima; Ballarini, Elisabetta; Bentes, Luis; Bielecka, Malgorzata; Chubarenko, Boris V; Heise, Susanne; Khokhlov, Valeriy; Klaoudatos, Dimitris; Lloret, Javier; Margonski, Piotr; Marín, Atucha; Matczak, Magdalena; Oen, Amy Mp; Palmieri, Maria G; Przedrzymirska, Joanna; Różyński, Grzegorz; Sousa, Ana I; Sousa, Lisa P; Tuchkovenko, Yurii; Zaucha, Jacek

    2016-10-01

    This article shares the experiences, observations, and discussions that occurred during the completing of an ecosystem services (ES) indicator framework to be used at European Union (EU) and Member States' level. The experience base was drawn from 3 European research projects and 14 associated case study sites that include 13 transitional-water bodies (specifically 8 coastal lagoons, 4 riverine estuaries, and 1 fjord) and 1 coastal-water ecosystem. The ES pertinent to each case study site were identified along with indicators of these ES and data sources that could be used for mapping. During the process, several questions and uncertainties arose, followed by discussion, leading to these main lessons learned: 1) ES identification: Some ES that do not seem important at the European scale emerge as relevant at regional or local scales; 2) ES indicators: When direct indicators are not available, proxies for indicators (indirect indicators) might be used, including combined data on monitoring requirements imposed by EU legislation and international agreements; 3) ES mapping: Boundaries and appropriate data spatial resolution must be established because ES can be mapped at different temporal and spatial scales. We also acknowledge that mapping and assessment of ES supports the dialogue between human well-being and ecological status. From an evidence-based marine planning-process point of view, mapping and assessment of marine ES are of paramount importance to sustainable use of marine natural capital and to halt the loss of marine biodiversity. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:726-734. © 2016 SETAC.

  5. An Ocean of Discovery: Biodiversity Beyond the Census of Marine Life.

    PubMed

    Snelgrove, Paul V R

    2016-06-01

    The 70 % of Earth's surface covered by oceans supports significant biological diversity and immense untapped potential for marine bioproducts. The recently completed international Census of Marine Life (2000-2010) invested heavily in evaluating the diversity, abundance, and distribution of life in the ocean but concluded that at least 50 % and potentially > 90 % of marine species remain undescribed by science. Despite this potential, and numerous successes spanning pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, anti-foulants and adhesives, biofuels, biocatalysts (enzymes), and cosmetics, several impediments have slowed marine bioproduct development. First, the sheer size of the ocean constrains comprehensive exploration. Second, marine taxonomists and ecologists generally do not focus on the most promising groups for bioproduct development. Third, the geographic mismatch between (often remote) biodiversity hotspots and science capacity limit discovery. Despite these challenges, new ocean sampling tools (digital imaging, remote vehicles, genetic approaches, in situ samplers), many developed or improved during the Census of Marine Life, should enhance future marine biodiversity and thus marine bioproduct discovery.

  6. Prediction uncertainty of environmental change effects on temperate European biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Dormann, Carsten F; Schweiger, Oliver; Arens, P; Augenstein, I; Aviron, St; Bailey, Debra; Baudry, J; Billeter, R; Bugter, R; Bukácek, R; Burel, F; Cerny, M; Cock, Raphaël De; De Blust, Geert; DeFilippi, R; Diekötter, Tim; Dirksen, J; Durka, W; Edwards, P J; Frenzel, M; Hamersky, R; Hendrickx, Frederik; Herzog, F; Klotz, St; Koolstra, B; Lausch, A; Le Coeur, D; Liira, J; Maelfait, J P; Opdam, P; Roubalova, M; Schermann-Legionnet, Agnes; Schermann, N; Schmidt, T; Smulders, M J M; Speelmans, M; Simova, P; Verboom, J; van Wingerden, Walter; Zobel, M

    2008-03-01

    Observed patterns of species richness at landscape scale (gamma diversity) cannot always be attributed to a specific set of explanatory variables, but rather different alternative explanatory statistical models of similar quality may exist. Therefore predictions of the effects of environmental change (such as in climate or land cover) on biodiversity may differ considerably, depending on the chosen set of explanatory variables. Here we use multimodel prediction to evaluate effects of climate, land-use intensity and landscape structure on species richness in each of seven groups of organisms (plants, birds, spiders, wild bees, ground beetles, true bugs and hoverflies) in temperate Europe. We contrast this approach with traditional best-model predictions, which we show, using cross-validation, to have inferior prediction accuracy. Multimodel inference changed the importance of some environmental variables in comparison with the best model, and accordingly gave deviating predictions for environmental change effects. Overall, prediction uncertainty for the multimodel approach was only slightly higher than that of the best model, and absolute changes in predicted species richness were also comparable. Richness predictions varied generally more for the impact of climate change than for land-use change at the coarse scale of our study. Overall, our study indicates that the uncertainty introduced to environmental change predictions through uncertainty in model selection both qualitatively and quantitatively affects species richness projections. PMID:18070098

  7. Phylogenetic inferences reveal a large extent of novel biodiversity in chemically rich tropical marine cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Engene, Niclas; Gunasekera, Sarath P; Gerwick, William H; Paul, Valerie J

    2013-03-01

    Benthic marine cyanobacteria are known for their prolific biosynthetic capacities to produce structurally diverse secondary metabolites with biomedical application and their ability to form cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms. In an effort to provide taxonomic clarity to better guide future natural product drug discovery investigations and harmful algal bloom monitoring, this study investigated the taxonomy of tropical and subtropical natural product-producing marine cyanobacteria on the basis of their evolutionary relatedness. Our phylogenetic inferences of marine cyanobacterial strains responsible for over 100 bioactive secondary metabolites revealed an uneven taxonomic distribution, with a few groups being responsible for the vast majority of these molecules. Our data also suggest a high degree of novel biodiversity among natural product-producing strains that was previously overlooked by traditional morphology-based taxonomic approaches. This unrecognized biodiversity is primarily due to a lack of proper classification systems since the taxonomy of tropical and subtropical, benthic marine cyanobacteria has only recently been analyzed by phylogenetic methods. This evolutionary study provides a framework for a more robust classification system to better understand the taxonomy of tropical and subtropical marine cyanobacteria and the distribution of natural products in marine cyanobacteria.

  8. Marine incursion into East Asia: a forgotten driving force of biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Lu; Hou, Zhonge; Li, Shuqiang

    2013-01-01

    Episodic marine incursion has been a major driving force in the formation of present-day diversity. Marine incursion is considered to be one of the most productive ‘species pumps’ particularly because of its division and coalescence effects. Marine incursion events and their impacts on diversity are well documented from South America, North America and Africa; however, their history and impacts in continental East Asia largely remain unknown. Here, we propose a marine incursion scenario occurring in East Asia during the Miocene epoch, 10–17 Ma. Our molecular phylogenetic analysis of Platorchestia talitrids revealed that continental terrestrial populations (Platorchestia japonica) form a monophyletic group that is the sister group to the Northwest Pacific coastal species Platorchestia pacifica. The divergence time between the two species coincides with Middle Miocene high global sea levels. We suggest that the inland form arose as a consequence of a marine incursion event. This is the first solid case documenting the impact of marine incursion on extant biodiversity in continental East Asia. We believe that such incursion event has had major impacts on other organisms and has played an important role in the formation of biodiversity patterns in the region. PMID:23446524

  9. Marine incursion into East Asia: a forgotten driving force of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lu; Hou, Zhonge; Li, Shuqiang

    2013-04-22

    Episodic marine incursion has been a major driving force in the formation of present-day diversity. Marine incursion is considered to be one of the most productive 'species pumps' particularly because of its division and coalescence effects. Marine incursion events and their impacts on diversity are well documented from South America, North America and Africa; however, their history and impacts in continental East Asia largely remain unknown. Here, we propose a marine incursion scenario occurring in East Asia during the Miocene epoch, 10-17 Ma. Our molecular phylogenetic analysis of Platorchestia talitrids revealed that continental terrestrial populations (Platorchestia japonica) form a monophyletic group that is the sister group to the Northwest Pacific coastal species Platorchestia pacifica. The divergence time between the two species coincides with Middle Miocene high global sea levels. We suggest that the inland form arose as a consequence of a marine incursion event. This is the first solid case documenting the impact of marine incursion on extant biodiversity in continental East Asia. We believe that such incursion event has had major impacts on other organisms and has played an important role in the formation of biodiversity patterns in the region.

  10. Tropical Marginal Seas: Priority Regions for Managing Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKinnon, A. David; Williams, Alan; Young, Jock; Ceccarelli, Daniela; Dunstan, Piers; Brewin, Robert J. W.; Watson, Reg; Brinkman, Richard; Cappo, Mike; Duggan, Samantha; Kelley, Russell; Ridgway, Ken; Lindsay, Dhugal; Gledhill, Daniel; Hutton, Trevor; Richardson, Anthony J.

    2014-01-01

    Tropical marginal seas (TMSs) are natural subregions of tropical oceans containing biodiverse ecosystems with conspicuous, valued, and vulnerable biodiversity assets. They are focal points for global marine conservation because they occur in regions where human populations are rapidly expanding. Our review of 11 TMSs focuses on three key ecosystems - coral reefs and emergent atolls, deep benthic systems, and pelagic biomes - and synthesizes, illustrates, and contrasts knowledge of biodiversity, ecosystem function, interaction between adjacent habitats, and anthropogenic pressures. TMSs vary in the extent that they have been subject to human influence - from the nearly pristine Coral Sea to the heavily exploited South China and Caribbean Seas - but we predict that they will all be similarly complex to manage because most span multiple national jurisdictions. We conclude that developing a structured process to identify ecologically and biologically significant areas that uses a set of globally agreed criteria is a tractable first step toward effective multinational and transboundary ecosystem management of TMSs.

  11. Tropical marginal seas: priority regions for managing marine biodiversity and ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    McKinnon, A David; Williams, Alan; Young, Jock; Ceccarelli, Daniela; Dunstan, Piers; Brewin, Robert J W; Watson, Reg; Brinkman, Richard; Cappo, Mike; Duggan, Samantha; Kelley, Russell; Ridgway, Ken; Lindsay, Dhugal; Gledhill, Daniel; Hutton, Trevor; Richardson, Anthony J

    2014-01-01

    Tropical marginal seas (TMSs) are natural subregions of tropical oceans containing biodiverse ecosystems with conspicuous, valued, and vulnerable biodiversity assets. They are focal points for global marine conservation because they occur in regions where human populations are rapidly expanding. Our review of 11 TMSs focuses on three key ecosystems-coral reefs and emergent atolls, deep benthic systems, and pelagic biomes-and synthesizes, illustrates, and contrasts knowledge of biodiversity, ecosystem function, interaction between adjacent habitats, and anthropogenic pressures. TMSs vary in the extent that they have been subject to human influence-from the nearly pristine Coral Sea to the heavily exploited South China and Caribbean Seas-but we predict that they will all be similarly complex to manage because most span multiple national jurisdictions. We conclude that developing a structured process to identify ecologically and biologically significant areas that uses a set of globally agreed criteria is a tractable first step toward effective multinational and transboundary ecosystem management of TMSs.

  12. Assessing global marine biodiversity status within a coupled socio-ecological perspective.

    PubMed

    Selig, Elizabeth R; Longo, Catherine; Halpern, Benjamin S; Best, Benjamin D; Hardy, Darren; Elfes, Cristiane T; Scarborough, Courtney; Kleisner, Kristin M; Katona, Steven K

    2013-01-01

    People value the existence of a variety of marine species and habitats, many of which are negatively impacted by human activities. The Convention on Biological Diversity and other international and national policy agreements have set broad goals for reducing the rate of biodiversity loss. However, efforts to conserve biodiversity cannot be effective without comprehensive metrics both to assess progress towards meeting conservation goals and to account for measures that reduce pressures so that positive actions are encouraged. We developed an index based on a global assessment of the condition of marine biodiversity using publically available data to estimate the condition of species and habitats within 151 coastal countries. Our assessment also included data on social and ecological pressures on biodiversity as well as variables that indicate whether good governance is in place to reduce them. Thus, our index is a social as well as ecological measure of the current and likely future status of biodiversity. As part of our analyses, we set explicit reference points or targets that provide benchmarks for success and allow for comparative assessment of current conditions. Overall country-level scores ranged from 43 to 95 on a scale of 1 to 100, but countries that scored high for species did not necessarily score high for habitats. Although most current status scores were relatively high, likely future status scores for biodiversity were much lower in most countries due to negative trends for both species and habitats. We also found a strong positive relationship between the Human Development Index and resilience measures that could promote greater sustainability by reducing pressures. This relationship suggests that many developing countries lack effective governance, further jeopardizing their ability to maintain species and habitats in the future.

  13. Assessing Global Marine Biodiversity Status within a Coupled Socio-Ecological Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Selig, Elizabeth R.; Longo, Catherine; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Best, Benjamin D.; Hardy, Darren; Elfes, Cristiane T.; Scarborough, Courtney; Kleisner, Kristin M.; Katona, Steven K.

    2013-01-01

    People value the existence of a variety of marine species and habitats, many of which are negatively impacted by human activities. The Convention on Biological Diversity and other international and national policy agreements have set broad goals for reducing the rate of biodiversity loss. However, efforts to conserve biodiversity cannot be effective without comprehensive metrics both to assess progress towards meeting conservation goals and to account for measures that reduce pressures so that positive actions are encouraged. We developed an index based on a global assessment of the condition of marine biodiversity using publically available data to estimate the condition of species and habitats within 151 coastal countries. Our assessment also included data on social and ecological pressures on biodiversity as well as variables that indicate whether good governance is in place to reduce them. Thus, our index is a social as well as ecological measure of the current and likely future status of biodiversity. As part of our analyses, we set explicit reference points or targets that provide benchmarks for success and allow for comparative assessment of current conditions. Overall country-level scores ranged from 43 to 95 on a scale of 1 to 100, but countries that scored high for species did not necessarily score high for habitats. Although most current status scores were relatively high, likely future status scores for biodiversity were much lower in most countries due to negative trends for both species and habitats. We also found a strong positive relationship between the Human Development Index and resilience measures that could promote greater sustainability by reducing pressures. This relationship suggests that many developing countries lack effective governance, further jeopardizing their ability to maintain species and habitats in the future. PMID:23593188

  14. Micro-Mar: a database for dynamic representation of marine microbial biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Pushker, Ravindra; D'Auria, Giuseppe; Alba-Casado, Jose Carlos; Rodríguez-Valera, Francisco

    2005-01-01

    Background The cataloging of marine prokaryotic DNA sequences is a fundamental aspect for bioprospecting and also for the development of evolutionary and speciation models. However, large amount of DNA sequences used to quantify prokaryotic biodiversity requires proper tools for storing, managing and analyzing these data for research purposes. Description The Micro-Mar database has been created to collect DNA diversity information from marine prokaryotes for biogeographical and ecological analyses. The database currently includes 11874 sequences corresponding to high resolution taxonomic genes (16S rRNA, ITS and 23S rRNA) and many other genes including CDS of marine prokaryotes together with available biogeographical and ecological information. Conclusion The database aims to integrate molecular data and taxonomic affiliation with biogeographical and ecological features that will allow to have a dynamic representation of the marine microbial diversity embedded in a user friendly web interface. It is available online at . PMID:16153293

  15. Implications of Sponge Biodiversity Patterns for the Management of a Marine Reserve in Northern Australia.

    PubMed

    Przeslawski, Rachel; Alvarez, Belinda; Kool, Johnathan; Bridge, Tom; Caley, M Julian; Nichol, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Marine reserves are becoming progressively more important as anthropogenic impacts continue to increase, but we have little baseline information for most marine environments. In this study, we focus on the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR) in northern Australia, particularly the carbonate banks and terraces of the Sahul Shelf and Van Diemen Rise which have been designated a Key Ecological Feature (KEF). We use a species-level inventory compiled from three marine surveys to the CMR to address several questions relevant to marine management: 1) Are carbonate banks and other raised geomorphic features associated with biodiversity hotspots? 2) Can environmental (depth, substrate hardness, slope) or biogeographic (east vs west) variables help explain local and regional differences in community structure? 3) Do sponge communities differ among individual raised geomorphic features? Approximately 750 sponge specimens were collected in the Oceanic Shoals CMR and assigned to 348 species, of which only 18% included taxonomically described species. Between eastern and western areas of the CMR, there was no difference between sponge species richness or assemblages on raised geomorphic features. Among individual raised geomorphic features, sponge assemblages were significantly different, but species richness was not. Species richness showed no linear relationships with measured environmental factors, but sponge assemblages were weakly associated with several environmental variables including mean depth and mean backscatter (east and west) and mean slope (east only). These patterns of sponge diversity are applied to support the future management and monitoring of this region, particularly noting the importance of spatial scale in biodiversity assessments and associated management strategies.

  16. Patterns and Variation in Benthic Biodiversity in a Large Marine Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Piacenza, Susan E; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lee, Jonathan D; Lindsley, Amy J; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Thurman, Lindsey L; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    While there is a persistent inverse relationship between latitude and species diversity across many taxa and ecosystems, deviations from this norm offer an opportunity to understand the conditions that contribute to large-scale diversity patterns. Marine systems, in particular, provide such an opportunity, as marine diversity does not always follow a strict latitudinal gradient, perhaps because several hypothesized drivers of the latitudinal diversity gradient are uncorrelated in marine systems. We used a large scale public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period to examine benthic marine faunal biodiversity patterns for the continental shelf (55-183 m depth) and slope habitats (184-1280 m depth) off the US West Coast (47°20'N-32°40'N). We specifically asked whether marine biodiversity followed a strict latitudinal gradient, and if these latitudinal patterns varied across depth, in different benthic substrates, and over ecological time scales. Further, we subdivided our study area into three smaller regions to test whether coast-wide patterns of biodiversity held at regional scales, where local oceanographic processes tend to influence community structure and function. Overall, we found complex patterns of biodiversity on both the coast-wide and regional scales that differed by taxonomic group. Importantly, marine biodiversity was not always highest at low latitudes. We found that latitude, depth, substrate, and year were all important descriptors of fish and invertebrate diversity. Invertebrate richness and taxonomic diversity were highest at high latitudes and in deeper waters. Fish richness also increased with latitude, but exhibited a hump-shaped relationship with depth, increasing with depth up to the continental shelf break, ~200 m depth, and then decreasing in deeper waters. We found relationships between fish taxonomic and functional diversity and latitude, depth, substrate, and time at the regional scale, but not at the coast-wide scale

  17. Patterns and Variation in Benthic Biodiversity in a Large Marine Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jonathan D.

    2015-01-01

    While there is a persistent inverse relationship between latitude and species diversity across many taxa and ecosystems, deviations from this norm offer an opportunity to understand the conditions that contribute to large-scale diversity patterns. Marine systems, in particular, provide such an opportunity, as marine diversity does not always follow a strict latitudinal gradient, perhaps because several hypothesized drivers of the latitudinal diversity gradient are uncorrelated in marine systems. We used a large scale public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period to examine benthic marine faunal biodiversity patterns for the continental shelf (55–183 m depth) and slope habitats (184–1280 m depth) off the US West Coast (47°20′N—32°40′N). We specifically asked whether marine biodiversity followed a strict latitudinal gradient, and if these latitudinal patterns varied across depth, in different benthic substrates, and over ecological time scales. Further, we subdivided our study area into three smaller regions to test whether coast-wide patterns of biodiversity held at regional scales, where local oceanographic processes tend to influence community structure and function. Overall, we found complex patterns of biodiversity on both the coast-wide and regional scales that differed by taxonomic group. Importantly, marine biodiversity was not always highest at low latitudes. We found that latitude, depth, substrate, and year were all important descriptors of fish and invertebrate diversity. Invertebrate richness and taxonomic diversity were highest at high latitudes and in deeper waters. Fish richness also increased with latitude, but exhibited a hump-shaped relationship with depth, increasing with depth up to the continental shelf break, ~200 m depth, and then decreasing in deeper waters. We found relationships between fish taxonomic and functional diversity and latitude, depth, substrate, and time at the regional scale, but not at the coast

  18. Patterns and Variation in Benthic Biodiversity in a Large Marine Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Piacenza, Susan E; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lee, Jonathan D; Lindsley, Amy J; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Thurman, Lindsey L; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    While there is a persistent inverse relationship between latitude and species diversity across many taxa and ecosystems, deviations from this norm offer an opportunity to understand the conditions that contribute to large-scale diversity patterns. Marine systems, in particular, provide such an opportunity, as marine diversity does not always follow a strict latitudinal gradient, perhaps because several hypothesized drivers of the latitudinal diversity gradient are uncorrelated in marine systems. We used a large scale public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period to examine benthic marine faunal biodiversity patterns for the continental shelf (55-183 m depth) and slope habitats (184-1280 m depth) off the US West Coast (47°20'N-32°40'N). We specifically asked whether marine biodiversity followed a strict latitudinal gradient, and if these latitudinal patterns varied across depth, in different benthic substrates, and over ecological time scales. Further, we subdivided our study area into three smaller regions to test whether coast-wide patterns of biodiversity held at regional scales, where local oceanographic processes tend to influence community structure and function. Overall, we found complex patterns of biodiversity on both the coast-wide and regional scales that differed by taxonomic group. Importantly, marine biodiversity was not always highest at low latitudes. We found that latitude, depth, substrate, and year were all important descriptors of fish and invertebrate diversity. Invertebrate richness and taxonomic diversity were highest at high latitudes and in deeper waters. Fish richness also increased with latitude, but exhibited a hump-shaped relationship with depth, increasing with depth up to the continental shelf break, ~200 m depth, and then decreasing in deeper waters. We found relationships between fish taxonomic and functional diversity and latitude, depth, substrate, and time at the regional scale, but not at the coast-wide scale

  19. Biodiversity of free-living marine nematodes in the southern Yellow Sea, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xiaoshou; Xu, Man; Hua, Er; Zhang, Zhinan

    2016-02-01

    Biodiversity patterns of free-living marine nematodes were studied using specific, taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity measures in the southern Yellow Sea, China. The results showed that the average of Shannon-Wiener diversity index ( H') in the study area was 3.17. The higher values were distributed in the east part of Shandong coastal waters and north part of Jiangsu coastal waters, while the lower values were distributed in the southern Yellow Sea Cold Water Mass (YSCWM). The average of taxonomic diversity ( Δ) was 62.09 in the study region. The higher values were distributed in the transitional areas between the coastal areas and the southern YSCWM, while the lower values were distributed near the north part of Jiangsu coastal waters and the YSCWM. Results of correlation analysis of species diversity and taxonomic diversity showed that some of the two kinds of diversity index were independent, which suggested that combining the two kinds of diversity indices can reflect the ecological characteristics better. A test for 95% probability funnels of average taxonomic distinctness and variation in taxonomic distinctness suggested that Station 8794 (in the YSCWM) was outside of the 95% probability funnels, which may be due to the environmental stress. Results of correlation analysis between marine nematodes biodiversity and environmental variables showed that the sediment characteristics (Mdø and Silt-clay fraction) and phaeophorbide a (Pha- a) were the most important factors to determine the biodiversity patterns of marine nematodes.

  20. On the use of abiotic surrogates to describe marine benthic biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McArthur, M. A.; Brooke, B. P.; Przeslawski, R.; Ryan, D. A.; Lucieer, V. L.; Nichol, S.; McCallum, A. W.; Mellin, C.; Cresswell, I. D.; Radke, L. C.

    2010-06-01

    A growing need to manage marine biodiversity sustainably at local, regional and global scales cannot be met by applying existing biological data. Abiotic surrogates of biodiversity are thus increasingly valuable in filling the gaps in our knowledge of biodiversity patterns, especially identification of hotspots, habitats needed by endangered or commercially valuable species and systems or processes important to the sustained provision of ecosystem services. This review examines the use of abiotic variables as surrogates for patterns in benthic biodiversity with particular regard to how variables are tied to processes affecting species richness and how easily those variables can be measured at scales relevant to resource management decisions. Direct gradient variables such as salinity, oxygen concentration and temperature can be strong predictive variables for larger systems, although local stability of water quality may prevent usefulness of these factors at fine spatial scales. Biological productivity has complex relationships with benthic biodiversity and although the development of local and regional models cannot accurately predict outside the range of their biological sampling, remote sensing may provide useful information. Indeed, interpolated values are available for much of the world's seas, and these are continually being refined by the collection of remote sensing and field data. Sediment variables often exhibit complex relationships with benthic biodiversity. The strength of the relationship between any one sediment variable and biodiversity may depend on the state of another sediment variable in that system. Percentage mud, percentage gravel, rugosity and compaction hold the strongest independent predictive power. Rugosity and the difference between gravel and finer sediments can be established using acoustic methods, but to quantify grain size and measure compaction, a sample is necessary. Pure spatial variables such as latitude, longitude and depth

  1. Global coordination and standardisation in marine biodiversity through the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) and related databases.

    PubMed

    Costello, Mark J; Bouchet, Philippe; Boxshall, Geoff; Fauchald, Kristian; Gordon, Dennis; Hoeksema, Bert W; Poore, Gary C B; van Soest, Rob W M; Stöhr, Sabine; Walter, T Chad; Vanhoorne, Bart; Decock, Wim; Appeltans, Ward

    2013-01-01

    The World Register of Marine Species is an over 90% complete open-access inventory of all marine species names. Here we illustrate the scale of the problems with species names, synonyms, and their classification, and describe how WoRMS publishes online quality assured information on marine species. Within WoRMS, over 100 global, 12 regional and 4 thematic species databases are integrated with a common taxonomy. Over 240 editors from 133 institutions and 31 countries manage the content. To avoid duplication of effort, content is exchanged with 10 external databases. At present WoRMS contains 460,000 taxonomic names (from Kingdom to subspecies), 368,000 species level combinations of which 215,000 are currently accepted marine species names, and 26,000 related but non-marine species. Associated information includes 150,000 literature sources, 20,000 images, and locations of 44,000 specimens. Usage has grown linearly since its launch in 2007, with about 600,000 unique visitors to the website in 2011, and at least 90 organisations from 12 countries using WoRMS for their data management. By providing easy access to expert-validated content, WoRMS improves quality control in the use of species names, with consequent benefits to taxonomy, ecology, conservation and marine biodiversity research and management. The service manages information on species names that would otherwise be overly costly for individuals, and thus minimises errors in the application of nomenclature standards. WoRMS' content is expanding to include host-parasite relationships, additional literature sources, locations of specimens, images, distribution range, ecological, and biological data. Species are being categorised as introduced (alien, invasive), of conservation importance, and on other attributes. These developments have a multiplier effect on its potential as a resource for biodiversity research and management. As a consequence of WoRMS, we are witnessing improved communication within the

  2. Global Coordination and Standardisation in Marine Biodiversity through the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) and Related Databases

    PubMed Central

    Bouchet, Philippe; Boxshall, Geoff; Fauchald, Kristian; Gordon, Dennis; Hoeksema, Bert W.; Poore, Gary C. B.; van Soest, Rob W. M.; Stöhr, Sabine; Walter, T. Chad; Vanhoorne, Bart; Decock, Wim

    2013-01-01

    The World Register of Marine Species is an over 90% complete open-access inventory of all marine species names. Here we illustrate the scale of the problems with species names, synonyms, and their classification, and describe how WoRMS publishes online quality assured information on marine species. Within WoRMS, over 100 global, 12 regional and 4 thematic species databases are integrated with a common taxonomy. Over 240 editors from 133 institutions and 31 countries manage the content. To avoid duplication of effort, content is exchanged with 10 external databases. At present WoRMS contains 460,000 taxonomic names (from Kingdom to subspecies), 368,000 species level combinations of which 215,000 are currently accepted marine species names, and 26,000 related but non-marine species. Associated information includes 150,000 literature sources, 20,000 images, and locations of 44,000 specimens. Usage has grown linearly since its launch in 2007, with about 600,000 unique visitors to the website in 2011, and at least 90 organisations from 12 countries using WoRMS for their data management. By providing easy access to expert-validated content, WoRMS improves quality control in the use of species names, with consequent benefits to taxonomy, ecology, conservation and marine biodiversity research and management. The service manages information on species names that would otherwise be overly costly for individuals, and thus minimises errors in the application of nomenclature standards. WoRMS' content is expanding to include host-parasite relationships, additional literature sources, locations of specimens, images, distribution range, ecological, and biological data. Species are being categorised as introduced (alien, invasive), of conservation importance, and on other attributes. These developments have a multiplier effect on its potential as a resource for biodiversity research and management. As a consequence of WoRMS, we are witnessing improved communication within the

  3. Quantifying Antarctic marine biodiversity: The SCAR-MarBIN data portal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griffiths, Huw J.; Danis, Bruno; Clarke, Andrew

    2011-03-01

    The documentation and analysis of broad-scale biological diversity requires modern databases. Here we describe the SCAR-Marine Biodiversity Information Network (SCAR-MarBIN) and demonstrate its value with a preliminary analysis of geographic patterns in species richness for a variety of marine taxa. SCAR-MarBIN is a web portal ( www.scarmarbin.be) that compiles and manages existing and new information on Antarctic marine biodiversity; it currently links over 140 datasets comprising over one million records. The portal is home to the Registry of Antarctic Marine Species (RAMS), an authoritative taxonomic list of marine species occurring in Antarctica. RAMS is a key resource for the Census of Antarctic Marine Life (CAML), a major five-year project that aims at assessing the nature, distribution and abundance of Southern Ocean biological diversity. SCAR-MarBIN provides a means of quantifying not only the diversity and distribution of Antarctic marine life but also a record of how, when and where these have been studied. It allows for the examination of geographic and bathymetric ranges, the documentation of gaps within and limits to the data, together with the identification of areas of particularly high diversity (hotspots) and also under-sampled regions or taxa. A preliminary analysis indicates that the pattern of sampling hotspots is driven principally by the pelagic data, mainly bird and mammal observations, whereas benthic species drive the overall pattern in species richness. Analyses of the complete data set reveal important biases in the data: most samples have been taken in shallow water (<700 m) and are either concentrated around shore-based research stations, or in the open ocean close to regular ship transit routes. These data provide a useful benchmark for the future, enabling ventures such as CAML to assess their impact on knowledge of biological diversity. It also highlights key areas for further investigation, such as the deep sea and the Amundsen Sea.

  4. The European Commission proposal for a marine strategy: lacking substance.

    PubMed

    Salomon, Markus

    2006-11-01

    The European Commission's proposed Marine Strategy constitutes a highly inadequate approach to long-term protection of the European Seas. The main problem with the strategy is the restriction to a proposed directive in which only EU Member States are placed under obligation to develop their own environmental objectives and marine protection activity programmes. This 'renationalisation' results in the exclusion of key policy areas like Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and Common Fishery Policy in which the EU has centralised powers. Furthermore, there is no plan to refine EU environmental law relevant to marine protection and nor are there any provisions for the linking of EU-level action with the international conventions for the protection of the oceans.

  5. Models of Marine Fish Biodiversity: Assessing Predictors from Three Habitat Classification Schemes.

    PubMed

    Yates, Katherine L; Mellin, Camille; Caley, M Julian; Radford, Ben T; Meeuwig, Jessica J

    2016-01-01

    Prioritising biodiversity conservation requires knowledge of where biodiversity occurs. Such knowledge, however, is often lacking. New technologies for collecting biological and physical data coupled with advances in modelling techniques could help address these gaps and facilitate improved management outcomes. Here we examined the utility of environmental data, obtained using different methods, for developing models of both uni- and multivariate biodiversity metrics. We tested which biodiversity metrics could be predicted best and evaluated the performance of predictor variables generated from three types of habitat data: acoustic multibeam sonar imagery, predicted habitat classification, and direct observer habitat classification. We used boosted regression trees (BRT) to model metrics of fish species richness, abundance and biomass, and multivariate regression trees (MRT) to model biomass and abundance of fish functional groups. We compared model performance using different sets of predictors and estimated the relative influence of individual predictors. Models of total species richness and total abundance performed best; those developed for endemic species performed worst. Abundance models performed substantially better than corresponding biomass models. In general, BRT and MRTs developed using predicted habitat classifications performed less well than those using multibeam data. The most influential individual predictor was the abiotic categorical variable from direct observer habitat classification and models that incorporated predictors from direct observer habitat classification consistently outperformed those that did not. Our results show that while remotely sensed data can offer considerable utility for predictive modelling, the addition of direct observer habitat classification data can substantially improve model performance. Thus it appears that there are aspects of marine habitats that are important for modelling metrics of fish biodiversity that are

  6. Models of Marine Fish Biodiversity: Assessing Predictors from Three Habitat Classification Schemes

    PubMed Central

    Yates, Katherine L.; Mellin, Camille; Caley, M. Julian; Radford, Ben T.; Meeuwig, Jessica J.

    2016-01-01

    Prioritising biodiversity conservation requires knowledge of where biodiversity occurs. Such knowledge, however, is often lacking. New technologies for collecting biological and physical data coupled with advances in modelling techniques could help address these gaps and facilitate improved management outcomes. Here we examined the utility of environmental data, obtained using different methods, for developing models of both uni- and multivariate biodiversity metrics. We tested which biodiversity metrics could be predicted best and evaluated the performance of predictor variables generated from three types of habitat data: acoustic multibeam sonar imagery, predicted habitat classification, and direct observer habitat classification. We used boosted regression trees (BRT) to model metrics of fish species richness, abundance and biomass, and multivariate regression trees (MRT) to model biomass and abundance of fish functional groups. We compared model performance using different sets of predictors and estimated the relative influence of individual predictors. Models of total species richness and total abundance performed best; those developed for endemic species performed worst. Abundance models performed substantially better than corresponding biomass models. In general, BRT and MRTs developed using predicted habitat classifications performed less well than those using multibeam data. The most influential individual predictor was the abiotic categorical variable from direct observer habitat classification and models that incorporated predictors from direct observer habitat classification consistently outperformed those that did not. Our results show that while remotely sensed data can offer considerable utility for predictive modelling, the addition of direct observer habitat classification data can substantially improve model performance. Thus it appears that there are aspects of marine habitats that are important for modelling metrics of fish biodiversity that are

  7. Models of Marine Fish Biodiversity: Assessing Predictors from Three Habitat Classification Schemes.

    PubMed

    Yates, Katherine L; Mellin, Camille; Caley, M Julian; Radford, Ben T; Meeuwig, Jessica J

    2016-01-01

    Prioritising biodiversity conservation requires knowledge of where biodiversity occurs. Such knowledge, however, is often lacking. New technologies for collecting biological and physical data coupled with advances in modelling techniques could help address these gaps and facilitate improved management outcomes. Here we examined the utility of environmental data, obtained using different methods, for developing models of both uni- and multivariate biodiversity metrics. We tested which biodiversity metrics could be predicted best and evaluated the performance of predictor variables generated from three types of habitat data: acoustic multibeam sonar imagery, predicted habitat classification, and direct observer habitat classification. We used boosted regression trees (BRT) to model metrics of fish species richness, abundance and biomass, and multivariate regression trees (MRT) to model biomass and abundance of fish functional groups. We compared model performance using different sets of predictors and estimated the relative influence of individual predictors. Models of total species richness and total abundance performed best; those developed for endemic species performed worst. Abundance models performed substantially better than corresponding biomass models. In general, BRT and MRTs developed using predicted habitat classifications performed less well than those using multibeam data. The most influential individual predictor was the abiotic categorical variable from direct observer habitat classification and models that incorporated predictors from direct observer habitat classification consistently outperformed those that did not. Our results show that while remotely sensed data can offer considerable utility for predictive modelling, the addition of direct observer habitat classification data can substantially improve model performance. Thus it appears that there are aspects of marine habitats that are important for modelling metrics of fish biodiversity that are

  8. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, E.O.; Peter, F.M.

    1988-01-01

    In tropical forests, on coral reefs, and in other threatened habitats, countless plant, animal, and microbial species face possible extinction - their names unknown, their numbers uncounted, their value unreckoned. Although popular attention has focused on the plight of more visible and widely known species like the whooping crane or the African elephant, most-experts agree that the loss of less-obvious organisms could be much more devastating. This is the subject of the volume. It calls attention to a most urgent global problem: the rapidly accelerating loss of plant and animal species to increasing human-population pressure and the demands of economic development. The book explores biodiversity from a wide variety of viewpoints.

  9. Marine biodiversity in the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America: knowledge and gaps.

    PubMed

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Klein, Eduardo; Díaz, Juan M; Hernández, Cristián E; Bigatti, Gregorio; Campos, Lucia; Artigas, Felipe; Castillo, Julio; Penchaszadeh, Pablo E; Neill, Paula E; Carranza, Alvar; Retana, María V; Díaz de Astarloa, Juan M; Lewis, Mirtha; Yorio, Pablo; Piriz, María L; Rodríguez, Diego; Yoneshigue-Valentin, Yocie; Gamboa, Luiz; Martín, Alberto

    2011-01-01

    The marine areas of South America (SA) include almost 30,000 km of coastline and encompass three different oceanic domains--the Caribbean, the Pacific, and the Atlantic--ranging in latitude from 12∘N to 55∘S. The 10 countries that border these coasts have different research capabilities and taxonomic traditions that affect taxonomic knowledge. This paper analyzes the status of knowledge of marine biodiversity in five subregions along the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America (SA): the Tropical East Pacific, the Humboldt Current,the Patagonian Shelf, the Brazilian Shelves, and the Tropical West Atlantic, and it provides a review of ecosystem threats and regional marine conservation strategies. South American marine biodiversity is least well known in the tropical subregions (with the exception of Costa Rica and Panama). Differences in total biodiversity were observed between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans at the same latitude. In the north of the continent, the Tropical East Pacific is richer in species than the Tropical West Atlantic, however, when standardized by coastal length, there is very little difference among them. In the south, the Humboldt Current system is much richer than the Patagonian Shelf. An analysis of endemism shows that 75% of the species are reported within only one of the SA regions, while about 22% of the species of SA are not reported elsewhere in the world. National and regional initiatives focusing on new exploration, especially to unknown areas and ecosystems, as well as collaboration among countries are fundamental to achieving the goal of completing inventories of species diversity and distribution.These inventories will allow accurate interpretation of the biogeography of its two oceanic coasts and latitudinal trends,and will also provide relevant information for science based policies. PMID:21304960

  10. Measuring marine fish biodiversity: temporal changes in abundance, life history and demography

    PubMed Central

    Hutchings, Jeffrey A; Baum, Julia K

    2005-01-01

    Patterns in marine fish biodiversity can be assessed by quantifying temporal variation in rate of population change, abundance, life history and demography concomitant with long-term reductions in abundance. Based on data for 177 populations (62 species) from four north-temperate oceanic regions (Northeast Atlantic and Pacific, Northwest Atlantic, North mid-Atlantic), 81% of the populations in decline prior to 1992 experienced reductions in their rate of loss thereafter; species whose rate of population decline accelerated after 1992 were predominantly top predators such as Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua), sole (Solea solea) and pelagic sharks. Combining population data across regions and species, marine fish have declined 35% since 1978 and are currently less than 70% of recorded maxima; demersal species are generally at historic lows, pelagic species are generally stable or increasing in abundance. Declines by demersal species have been associated with substantive increases in pelagic species, a pattern consistent with the hypothesis that increases in the latter may be attributable to reduced predation mortality. There is a need to determine the consequences to population growth effected by the reductions in age (21%) and size (13%) at maturity and in mean age (5%) and size (18%) of spawners, concomitant with population decline. We conclude that reductions in the rate of population decline, in the absence of targets for population increase, will be insufficient to effect a recovery of marine fish biodiversity, and that great care must be exercised when interpreting multi-species patterns in abundance. Of fundamental importance is the need to explain the geographical, species-specific and habitat biases that pervade patterns of marine fish recovery and biodiversity. PMID:15814348

  11. An extreme climatic event alters marine ecosystem structure in a global biodiversity hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wernberg, Thomas; Smale, Dan A.; Tuya, Fernando; Thomsen, Mads S.; Langlois, Timothy J.; de Bettignies, Thibaut; Bennett, Scott; Rousseaux, Cecile S.

    2013-01-01

    Extreme climatic events, such as heat waves, are predicted to increase in frequency and magnitude as a consequence of global warming but their ecological effects are poorly understood, particularly in marine ecosystems. In early 2011, the marine ecosystems along the west coast of Australia--a global hotspot of biodiversity and endemism--experienced the highest-magnitude warming event on record. Sea temperatures soared to unprecedented levels and warming anomalies of 2-4°C persisted for more than ten weeks along >2,000km of coastline. We show that biodiversity patterns of temperate seaweeds, sessile invertebrates and demersal fish were significantly different after the warming event, which led to a reduction in the abundance of habitat-forming seaweeds and a subsequent shift in community structure towards a depauperate state and a tropicalization of fish communities. We conclude that extreme climatic events are key drivers of biodiversity patterns and that the frequency and intensity of such episodes have major implications for predictive models of species distribution and ecosystem structure, which are largely based on gradual warming trends.

  12. Assessment of marine ecosystem services indicators: Experiences and lessons learned from 14 European case studies.

    PubMed

    Lillebø, Ana I; Somma, Francesca; Norén, Katja; Gonçalves, Jorge; Alves, M Fátima; Ballarini, Elisabetta; Bentes, Luis; Bielecka, Malgorzata; Chubarenko, Boris V; Heise, Susanne; Khokhlov, Valeriy; Klaoudatos, Dimitris; Lloret, Javier; Margonski, Piotr; Marín, Atucha; Matczak, Magdalena; Oen, Amy Mp; Palmieri, Maria G; Przedrzymirska, Joanna; Różyński, Grzegorz; Sousa, Ana I; Sousa, Lisa P; Tuchkovenko, Yurii; Zaucha, Jacek

    2016-10-01

    This article shares the experiences, observations, and discussions that occurred during the completing of an ecosystem services (ES) indicator framework to be used at European Union (EU) and Member States' level. The experience base was drawn from 3 European research projects and 14 associated case study sites that include 13 transitional-water bodies (specifically 8 coastal lagoons, 4 riverine estuaries, and 1 fjord) and 1 coastal-water ecosystem. The ES pertinent to each case study site were identified along with indicators of these ES and data sources that could be used for mapping. During the process, several questions and uncertainties arose, followed by discussion, leading to these main lessons learned: 1) ES identification: Some ES that do not seem important at the European scale emerge as relevant at regional or local scales; 2) ES indicators: When direct indicators are not available, proxies for indicators (indirect indicators) might be used, including combined data on monitoring requirements imposed by EU legislation and international agreements; 3) ES mapping: Boundaries and appropriate data spatial resolution must be established because ES can be mapped at different temporal and spatial scales. We also acknowledge that mapping and assessment of ES supports the dialogue between human well-being and ecological status. From an evidence-based marine planning-process point of view, mapping and assessment of marine ES are of paramount importance to sustainable use of marine natural capital and to halt the loss of marine biodiversity. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:726-734. © 2016 SETAC. PMID:27064511

  13. The biodiversity management of a marine protected area with a geographic information system in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Huaguo; Huang, Weigen; li, Dongling

    2008-10-01

    This paper focus a very representatively marine protected area (MPA), named Nanji Islands National Natural Reserve. The MPA is built for protecting shellfish, algae and their inhabit environment. The MPA is located at East China Sea with 7.6 square kilometers land area, composed of about 50 islands greater than 500 square meters. The waters support particularly high levels of diversity among shellfish, seaweeds, or macro benthic algae and micro-algae. The purpose of the paper is to develop a GIS to manage the biodiversity and to assess the threat. Base geographic data are collected. More than four times survey data are collected since 1992, including shellfish and macro benthic algae. A spatial database is created to store spatial data including base map, survey site and threat factor distribution. Other biodiversity attribute information is stored in database. Aquiculture, tourism, and human over collection are synthesized as threat factors. The condition of biodiversity and threats to biodiversity at Aquaculture, tourism, environment pollution are analyzed and assessed.

  14. Is global change a real threat for conservation of the NW Mediterranean marine biodiversity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrabou, J.; Dimar Team

    2003-04-01

    An increasing body of evidence is demonstrating that global change is already affecting terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Coastal marine habitats are a main subject of attention because they harbour a high biological diversity, are among the most productive systems of the world and present high anthropogenic interaction levels. Most studies on the effects of global change on marine ecosystems have focused on tropical habitats but effects on marine habitats at higher latitudes have been increasingly reported during the last decades. We examined the case of the NW Mediterranean sublittoral habitats for which a warming trend in water temperature has already been detected. The actual and potential responses of different taxonomic groups have been examined. We found a clear trend in northward range shifts for a number of species and an increase in disease and mass mortalities events during the last two decades. Therefore, significant modifications of diversity are expected in the next decades in the NW Mediterranean (at least at local scale), through species' immigrations, extinctions or shifts, and potential subsequent cascade effects. These modifications could ultimately disrupt ecosystem functions. Since the Mediterranean, with only 0.82 % of oceans' surface, harbours 4 to 18 % of total marine biodiversity, potential effects of global change in this area could have dramatic consequences for the conservation of the marine diversity, world-wide.

  15. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, A. ); Carper, R. )

    1993-10-30

    Traditional herbalists act as a first-level screen for plants which may contain chemicals with significant pharmaceutical potential. Unfortunately, the destruction of rain forests is likely to lead to the extinction of many plant species before their potential can be explored. 165,000 km[sup 2] of tropical forest and 90,000 km[sup 2] of range land are destroyed or degraded each year, an annual attrition rate of about 1% for tropical forest. If these losses continue until only land set aside in parks is left, 66% of plant and 69% of animal species may be lost. The burning of forests to clear land for human settlement also makes a significant contribution to the greenhouse gases that are raising global mean temperatures. There are synergisms--here between rainforest destruction, loss of biodiversity, and global climate change--with potential impacts on health. Some aspects will be explored more fully in the contributions on vector-borne diseases and direct impacts and in the collaborative review of monitoring with which the series ends.

  16. Implications of Sponge Biodiversity Patterns for the Management of a Marine Reserve in Northern Australia

    PubMed Central

    Przeslawski, Rachel; Alvarez, Belinda; Kool, Johnathan; Bridge, Tom; Caley, M. Julian; Nichol, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Marine reserves are becoming progressively more important as anthropogenic impacts continue to increase, but we have little baseline information for most marine environments. In this study, we focus on the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR) in northern Australia, particularly the carbonate banks and terraces of the Sahul Shelf and Van Diemen Rise which have been designated a Key Ecological Feature (KEF). We use a species-level inventory compiled from three marine surveys to the CMR to address several questions relevant to marine management: 1) Are carbonate banks and other raised geomorphic features associated with biodiversity hotspots? 2) Can environmental (depth, substrate hardness, slope) or biogeographic (east vs west) variables help explain local and regional differences in community structure? 3) Do sponge communities differ among individual raised geomorphic features? Approximately 750 sponge specimens were collected in the Oceanic Shoals CMR and assigned to 348 species, of which only 18% included taxonomically described species. Between eastern and western areas of the CMR, there was no difference between sponge species richness or assemblages on raised geomorphic features. Among individual raised geomorphic features, sponge assemblages were significantly different, but species richness was not. Species richness showed no linear relationships with measured environmental factors, but sponge assemblages were weakly associated with several environmental variables including mean depth and mean backscatter (east and west) and mean slope (east only). These patterns of sponge diversity are applied to support the future management and monitoring of this region, particularly noting the importance of spatial scale in biodiversity assessments and associated management strategies. PMID:26606745

  17. Implications of Sponge Biodiversity Patterns for the Management of a Marine Reserve in Northern Australia.

    PubMed

    Przeslawski, Rachel; Alvarez, Belinda; Kool, Johnathan; Bridge, Tom; Caley, M Julian; Nichol, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Marine reserves are becoming progressively more important as anthropogenic impacts continue to increase, but we have little baseline information for most marine environments. In this study, we focus on the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR) in northern Australia, particularly the carbonate banks and terraces of the Sahul Shelf and Van Diemen Rise which have been designated a Key Ecological Feature (KEF). We use a species-level inventory compiled from three marine surveys to the CMR to address several questions relevant to marine management: 1) Are carbonate banks and other raised geomorphic features associated with biodiversity hotspots? 2) Can environmental (depth, substrate hardness, slope) or biogeographic (east vs west) variables help explain local and regional differences in community structure? 3) Do sponge communities differ among individual raised geomorphic features? Approximately 750 sponge specimens were collected in the Oceanic Shoals CMR and assigned to 348 species, of which only 18% included taxonomically described species. Between eastern and western areas of the CMR, there was no difference between sponge species richness or assemblages on raised geomorphic features. Among individual raised geomorphic features, sponge assemblages were significantly different, but species richness was not. Species richness showed no linear relationships with measured environmental factors, but sponge assemblages were weakly associated with several environmental variables including mean depth and mean backscatter (east and west) and mean slope (east only). These patterns of sponge diversity are applied to support the future management and monitoring of this region, particularly noting the importance of spatial scale in biodiversity assessments and associated management strategies. PMID:26606745

  18. European Community`s program in marine resources development

    SciTech Connect

    Lenoble, J.P.; Jarmache, E.

    1995-12-01

    The European Community launched already several research program in the different fields of social and industrial activities. The Fourth Framework Programme is divided into 4 main activities comporting a total of 18 programs. These programs are dealing with general topics as information and communication, industrial technologies, environment, life sciences and technologies, energy, transport and socioeconomic research. One line is devoted to marine sciences and technology, but offshore activities could also be included in the other topics as offshore oil and gas in energy, ship building and harbor in transport, aquaculture and fisheries in life sciences and technology, etc. In order to maintain a coherent approach toward offshore activities, the European maritime industries met intensively front 1991 to 1994 and recommended a series of proposal for Research and Development of marine resources. The methodology and content of these proposals is exposed.

  19. High bacterial biodiversity increases degradation performance of hydrocarbons during bioremediation of contaminated harbor marine sediments.

    PubMed

    Dell'Anno, Antonio; Beolchini, Francesca; Rocchetti, Laura; Luna, Gian Marco; Danovaro, Roberto

    2012-08-01

    We investigated changes of bacterial abundance and biodiversity during bioremediation experiments carried out on oxic and anoxic marine harbor sediments contaminated with hydrocarbons. Oxic sediments, supplied with inorganic nutrients, were incubated in aerobic conditions at 20 °C and 35 °C for 30 days, whereas anoxic sediments, amended with organic substrates, were incubated in anaerobic conditions at the same temperatures for 60 days. Results reported here indicate that temperature exerted the main effect on bacterial abundance, diversity and assemblage composition. At higher temperature bacterial diversity and evenness increased significantly in aerobic conditions, whilst decreased in anaerobic conditions. In both aerobic and anaerobic conditions, biodegradation efficiencies of hydrocarbons were significantly and positively related with bacterial richness and evenness. Overall results presented here suggest that bioremediation strategies, which can sustain high levels of bacterial diversity rather than the selection of specific taxa, may significantly increase the efficiency of hydrocarbon degradation in contaminated marine sediments.

  20. [Hyperbolic growth of marine and continental biodiversity through the phanerozoic and community evolution].

    PubMed

    Markov, A V; Korotaev, A V

    2008-01-01

    Among diverse models that are used to describe and interpret the changes in global biodiversity through the Phanerozoic, the exponential and logistic models (traditionally used in population biology) are the most popular. As we have recently demonstrated (Markov, Korotayev, 2007), the growth of the Phanerozoic marine biodiversity at genus level correlates better with the hyperbolic model (widely used in demography and macrosociology). Here we show that the hyperbolic model is also applicable to the Phanerozoic continental biota at genus and family levels, and to the marine biota at species, genus, and family levels. There are many common features in the evolutionary dynamics of the marine and continental biotas that imply similarity and common nature of the factors and mechanisms underlying the hyperbolic growth. Both marine and continental biotas are characterized by continuous growth of the mean longevity of taxa, by decreasing extinction and origination rates, by similar pattern of replacement of dominant groups, by stepwise accumulation of evolutionary stable, adaptable and "physiologically buffered" taxa with effective mechanisms of parental care, protection of early developmental stages, etc. At the beginning of the development of continental biota, the observed taxonomic diversity was substantially lower than that predicted by the hyperbolic model. We suggest that this is due, firstly, to the fact that, during the earliest stages of the continental biota evolution, the groups that are not preserved in the fossil record (such as soil bacteria, unicellular algae, lichens, etc.) played a fundamental role, and secondly, to the fact that the continental biota initially formed as a marginal portion of the marine biota, rather than a separate system. The hyperbolic dynamics is most prominent when both marine and continental biotas are considered together. This fact can be interpreted as a proof of the integrated nature of the biosphere. In the macrosociological

  1. [Hyperbolic growth of marine and continental biodiversity through the phanerozoic and community evolution].

    PubMed

    Markov, A V; Korotaev, A V

    2008-01-01

    Among diverse models that are used to describe and interpret the changes in global biodiversity through the Phanerozoic, the exponential and logistic models (traditionally used in population biology) are the most popular. As we have recently demonstrated (Markov, Korotayev, 2007), the growth of the Phanerozoic marine biodiversity at genus level correlates better with the hyperbolic model (widely used in demography and macrosociology). Here we show that the hyperbolic model is also applicable to the Phanerozoic continental biota at genus and family levels, and to the marine biota at species, genus, and family levels. There are many common features in the evolutionary dynamics of the marine and continental biotas that imply similarity and common nature of the factors and mechanisms underlying the hyperbolic growth. Both marine and continental biotas are characterized by continuous growth of the mean longevity of taxa, by decreasing extinction and origination rates, by similar pattern of replacement of dominant groups, by stepwise accumulation of evolutionary stable, adaptable and "physiologically buffered" taxa with effective mechanisms of parental care, protection of early developmental stages, etc. At the beginning of the development of continental biota, the observed taxonomic diversity was substantially lower than that predicted by the hyperbolic model. We suggest that this is due, firstly, to the fact that, during the earliest stages of the continental biota evolution, the groups that are not preserved in the fossil record (such as soil bacteria, unicellular algae, lichens, etc.) played a fundamental role, and secondly, to the fact that the continental biota initially formed as a marginal portion of the marine biota, rather than a separate system. The hyperbolic dynamics is most prominent when both marine and continental biotas are considered together. This fact can be interpreted as a proof of the integrated nature of the biosphere. In the macrosociological

  2. Tropical marginal seas: priority regions for managing marine biodiversity and ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    McKinnon, A David; Williams, Alan; Young, Jock; Ceccarelli, Daniela; Dunstan, Piers; Brewin, Robert J W; Watson, Reg; Brinkman, Richard; Cappo, Mike; Duggan, Samantha; Kelley, Russell; Ridgway, Ken; Lindsay, Dhugal; Gledhill, Daniel; Hutton, Trevor; Richardson, Anthony J

    2014-01-01

    Tropical marginal seas (TMSs) are natural subregions of tropical oceans containing biodiverse ecosystems with conspicuous, valued, and vulnerable biodiversity assets. They are focal points for global marine conservation because they occur in regions where human populations are rapidly expanding. Our review of 11 TMSs focuses on three key ecosystems-coral reefs and emergent atolls, deep benthic systems, and pelagic biomes-and synthesizes, illustrates, and contrasts knowledge of biodiversity, ecosystem function, interaction between adjacent habitats, and anthropogenic pressures. TMSs vary in the extent that they have been subject to human influence-from the nearly pristine Coral Sea to the heavily exploited South China and Caribbean Seas-but we predict that they will all be similarly complex to manage because most span multiple national jurisdictions. We conclude that developing a structured process to identify ecologically and biologically significant areas that uses a set of globally agreed criteria is a tractable first step toward effective multinational and transboundary ecosystem management of TMSs. PMID:24128091

  3. Unite research with what citizens do for fun: "recreational monitoring" of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Goffredo, Stefano; Pensa, Francesco; Neri, Patrizia; Orlandi, Antonio; Gagliardi, Maria Scola; Velardi, Angela; Piccinetti, Corrado; Zaccanti, Francesco

    2010-12-01

    Institutes often lack funds and manpower to perform large-scale biodiversity monitoring. Citizens can be involved, contributing to the collection of data, thus decreasing costs. Underwater research requires specialist skills and SCUBA certification, and it can be difficult to involve volunteers. The aim of this study was to involve large numbers of recreational divers in marine biodiversity monitoring for increasing the environmental education of the public and collecting data on the status of marine biodiversity. Here we show that thousands of recreational divers can be enrolled in a short time. Using specially formulated questionnaires, nonspecialist volunteers reported the presence of 61 marine taxa encountered during recreational dives, performed as regular sport dives. Validation trials were carried out to assess the accuracy and consistency of volunteer-recorded data, and these were compared to reference data collected by an experienced researcher. In the majority of trials (76%) volunteers performed with an accuracy and consistency of 50-80%, comparable to the performance of conservation volunteer divers on precise transects in other projects. The recruitment of recreational divers involved the main diving and tour operators in Italy, a popular scientific magazine, and mass media. During the four-year study, 3825 divers completed 18757 questionnaires, corresponding to 13539 diving hours. The volunteer-sightings-based index showed that in the monitored area the biodiversity status did not change significantly within the project time scale, but there was a significant negative correlation with latitude, suggesting improved quality in the southernmost areas. This trend could be related to the presence of stressors in the northern areas and has been supported by investigations performed by the Italian Ministry of the Environment. The greatest limitation with using volunteers to collect data was the uneven spatial distribution of samples. The benefits were the

  4. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Cordelia H.; Radford, Ben T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Heyward, Andrew J.; Stewart, Romola R.; Watts, Matthew E.; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J.; Harvey, Euan S.; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W.; Lowe, Ryan J.; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-01-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia–a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation. PMID:27556689

  5. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Cordelia H.; Radford, Ben T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Heyward, Andrew J.; Stewart, Romola R.; Watts, Matthew E.; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J.; Harvey, Euan S.; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W.; Lowe, Ryan J.; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-08-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia–a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation.

  6. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs.

    PubMed

    Moore, Cordelia H; Radford, Ben T; Possingham, Hugh P; Heyward, Andrew J; Stewart, Romola R; Watts, Matthew E; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J; Harvey, Euan S; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W; Lowe, Ryan J; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-01-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia-a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation. PMID:27556689

  7. Commercial product exploitation from marine microbial biodiversity: some legal and IP issues

    PubMed Central

    Tichet, Camille; Nguyen, Hong Khanh; Yaakoubi, Sefia El; Bloch, Jean‐François

    2010-01-01

    Summary The biodiversity found in the marine environment is remarkable and yet largely unknown compared with the terrestrial one. The associated genetic resource, also wide and unrevealed, has raised a strong interest from the scientific and industrial community. However, despite this growing interest, the discovery of new compounds extracted from marine organisms, more precisely from microorganisms, is ruled by a complex legislation. The access and transfer of genetic resource are ruled by the Convention on Biological Diversity. One of the three core objectives of this convention is to ensure the fair and equitable sharing of benefits generated by the use of genetic resources and to split these benefits between the different stakeholders. From the discovery of a microorganism to the commercialization of a product, three main stakeholders are involved: providers of microorganisms, e.g. academic institutes, the scientists who will perform R&D on biodiversity, and the industrial companies which will commercialize the final product arising from the R&D results. This article describes how difficult and complex it might be to ensure a fair distribution of benefits of this research between the parties. PMID:21255350

  8. State of knowledge of coastal and marine biodiversity of Indian Ocean countries.

    PubMed

    Wafar, Mohideen; Venkataraman, Krishnamurthy; Ingole, Baban; Ajmal Khan, Syed; Lokabharathi, Ponnapakkam

    2011-01-01

    The Indian Ocean (IO) extends over 30% of the global ocean area and is rimmed by 36 littoral and 11 hinterland nations sustaining about 30% of the world's population. The landlocked character of the ocean along its northern boundary and the resultant seasonally reversing wind and sea surface circulation patterns are features unique to the IO. The IO also accounts for 30% of the global coral reef cover, 40,000 km² of mangroves,some of the world's largest estuaries, and 9 large marine ecosystems. Numerous expeditions and institutional efforts in the last two centuries have contributed greatly to our knowledge of coastal and marine biodiversity within the IO. The current inventory, as seen from the Ocean Biogeographic Information System, stands at 34,989 species, but the status of knowledge is not uniform among countries. Lack of human, institutional, and technical capabilities in some IO countries is the main cause for the heterogeneous level of growth in our understanding of the biodiversity of the IO. The gaps in knowledge extend to several smaller taxa and to large parts of the shelf and deep-sea ecosystems, including seamounts. Habitat loss, uncontrolled developmental activities in the coastal zone, over extraction of resources, and coastal pollution are serious constraints on maintenance of highly diverse biota, especially in countries like those of the IO, where environmental regulations are weak. PMID:21297949

  9. State of knowledge of coastal and marine biodiversity of Indian Ocean countries.

    PubMed

    Wafar, Mohideen; Venkataraman, Krishnamurthy; Ingole, Baban; Ajmal Khan, Syed; Lokabharathi, Ponnapakkam

    2011-01-31

    The Indian Ocean (IO) extends over 30% of the global ocean area and is rimmed by 36 littoral and 11 hinterland nations sustaining about 30% of the world's population. The landlocked character of the ocean along its northern boundary and the resultant seasonally reversing wind and sea surface circulation patterns are features unique to the IO. The IO also accounts for 30% of the global coral reef cover, 40,000 km² of mangroves,some of the world's largest estuaries, and 9 large marine ecosystems. Numerous expeditions and institutional efforts in the last two centuries have contributed greatly to our knowledge of coastal and marine biodiversity within the IO. The current inventory, as seen from the Ocean Biogeographic Information System, stands at 34,989 species, but the status of knowledge is not uniform among countries. Lack of human, institutional, and technical capabilities in some IO countries is the main cause for the heterogeneous level of growth in our understanding of the biodiversity of the IO. The gaps in knowledge extend to several smaller taxa and to large parts of the shelf and deep-sea ecosystems, including seamounts. Habitat loss, uncontrolled developmental activities in the coastal zone, over extraction of resources, and coastal pollution are serious constraints on maintenance of highly diverse biota, especially in countries like those of the IO, where environmental regulations are weak.

  10. Biodiversity of cone snails and other venomous marine gastropods: evolutionary success through neuropharmacology.

    PubMed

    Olivera, Baldomero M; Showers Corneli, Patrice; Watkins, Maren; Fedosov, Alexander

    2014-02-01

    Venomous marine snails (superfamily Conoidea) are a remarkably biodiverse marine invertebrate lineage (featuring more than 10,000 species). Conoideans use complex venoms (up to 100 different components for each species) to capture prey and for other biotic interactions. Molecular phylogeny and venom peptide characterization provide an unusual multidisciplinary view of conoidean biodiversity at several taxonomic levels. Venom peptides diverge between species at an unprecedented rate through hypermutation within gene families. Clade divergence within a genus occurs without recruiting new gene families when a saltatory event, such as colonization of new prey types (e.g., fish), leads to a new radiation. Divergence between genera in the same family involves substantial divergence in gene families. In the superfamily Conoidea, the family groups recruited distinct sets of different venom gene superfamilies. The associated morphological, behavioral, and prey-preference changes that accompany these molecular changes are unknown for most conoidean lineages, except for one genus, Conus, for which many associated phenotypic changes have been documented.

  11. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs.

    PubMed

    Moore, Cordelia H; Radford, Ben T; Possingham, Hugh P; Heyward, Andrew J; Stewart, Romola R; Watts, Matthew E; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J; Harvey, Euan S; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W; Lowe, Ryan J; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-08-24

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia-a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation.

  12. Taxonomic level as a determinant of the shape of the Phanerozoic marine biodiversity curve.

    PubMed

    Lane, Abigail; Benton, Michael J

    2003-09-01

    Key aims of recent paleobiological research have been the construction of Phanerozoic global biodiversity patterns and the formulation of models and mechanisms of diversification describing such patterns. Two conflicting theories of global diversification have been equilibrium versus expansionist growth of taxonomic diversity. These models, however, rely on accurate empirical data curves, and it is not clear to what extent the taxonomic level at which the data are analyzed controls the resulting pattern. Global Phanerozoic marine diversity curves are constructed at ordinal, familial, and generic levels using several fossil-range data sets. The fit of a single logistic model reduces from ordinal through familial to generic level, while conversely, that of an exponential growth model increases. Three sequential logistic equations, fitted to three time periods during which diversity appears to approach or reach an equilibrium state, provide the best description of the data at familial and generic levels. However, an exponential growth curve describes the diversification of marine life since the end-Permian extinction equally as well as a logistic. A species-level model of global Phanerozoic marine diversification, constructed by extrapolation of the trends from familial to generic level, suggests growth in numbers of marine species was broadly exponential. When smaller subsets of the data are analyzed, the effect of taxonomic level on the shape of the diversity curve becomes more pronounced. In the absence of species data, a consistent signal at more than one higher taxonomic level is required to predict a species-level pattern. PMID:12970836

  13. MyOcean : towards the European Marine Core Service

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adragna, F.; Bahurel, P.

    2009-04-01

    MyOcean is the implementation project of the European Marine Core Service, aiming at deploying the first concerted and integrated pan-European capacity for ocean monitoring and forecasting. During years 2009-2011, MyOcean will lead the setting up of this new European service, grown on past investments in research & development, system development and international collaborations. Implementing a European Marine Core Service is one of the top-three priorities of the GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) program lead by the European Commission to enhance the development of new services based on Earth Observation, and organize their long-term sustainability. MyOcean is a direct answer to this priority. Co-funded by the European Commission up to 33 M€, MyOcean gathers a total amount of resources in Europe of 55 M€, and a consortium of 60 partners spread over 28 countries, led by the Mercator Ocean. More than 350 persons are involved, representing around 200 FTE. The scientific challenge is the one linked to the development and operation of a reliable global ocean monitoring and forecasting; the technical challenge is to transition to full operations at a pan-european level a distributed system of systems (architecture and organisation that integrate and homogenize the existing capacities) made of a dozen of centres on duty in Europe. The ultimate challenge is to turn our overall approach of operational oceanography to a full service organization driven by user needs, and linked on a sustainable basis with the main stakeholders of operational oceanography in Europe and at the international level. The project has started on 1st January 2009. We will illustrate the current plan and status of this European "MyOcean" initiative. Standards on data, exchange of data and model outputs, validation "metrics" methodology, … are today direct legacy of the GODAE "common" integrated in the European MyOcean organization. MyOcean in Europe will demonstrate the

  14. Jack-of-all-trades effects drive biodiversity-ecosystem multifunctionality relationships in European forests.

    PubMed

    van der Plas, Fons; Manning, Peter; Allan, Eric; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Verheyen, Kris; Wirth, Christian; Zavala, Miguel A; Hector, Andy; Ampoorter, Evy; Baeten, Lander; Barbaro, Luc; Bauhus, Jürgen; Benavides, Raquel; Benneter, Adam; Berthold, Felix; Bonal, Damien; Bouriaud, Olivier; Bruelheide, Helge; Bussotti, Filippo; Carnol, Monique; Castagneyrol, Bastien; Charbonnier, Yohan; Coomes, David; Coppi, Andrea; Bastias, Cristina C; Muhie Dawud, Seid; De Wandeler, Hans; Domisch, Timo; Finér, Leena; Gessler, Arthur; Granier, André; Grossiord, Charlotte; Guyot, Virginie; Hättenschwiler, Stephan; Jactel, Hervé; Jaroszewicz, Bogdan; Joly, François-Xavier; Jucker, Tommaso; Koricheva, Julia; Milligan, Harriet; Müller, Sandra; Muys, Bart; Nguyen, Diem; Pollastrini, Martina; Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten; Selvi, Federico; Stenlid, Jan; Valladares, Fernando; Vesterdal, Lars; Zielínski, Dawid; Fischer, Markus

    2016-03-24

    There is considerable evidence that biodiversity promotes multiple ecosystem functions (multifunctionality), thus ensuring the delivery of ecosystem services important for human well-being. However, the mechanisms underlying this relationship are poorly understood, especially in natural ecosystems. We develop a novel approach to partition biodiversity effects on multifunctionality into three mechanisms and apply this to European forest data. We show that throughout Europe, tree diversity is positively related with multifunctionality when moderate levels of functioning are required, but negatively when very high function levels are desired. For two well-known mechanisms, 'complementarity' and 'selection', we detect only minor effects on multifunctionality. Instead a third, so far overlooked mechanism, the 'jack-of-all-trades' effect, caused by the averaging of individual species effects on function, drives observed patterns. Simulations demonstrate that jack-of-all-trades effects occur whenever species effects on different functions are not perfectly correlated, meaning they may contribute to diversity-multifunctionality relationships in many of the world's ecosystems.

  15. Jack-of-all-trades effects drive biodiversity-ecosystem multifunctionality relationships in European forests.

    PubMed

    van der Plas, Fons; Manning, Peter; Allan, Eric; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Verheyen, Kris; Wirth, Christian; Zavala, Miguel A; Hector, Andy; Ampoorter, Evy; Baeten, Lander; Barbaro, Luc; Bauhus, Jürgen; Benavides, Raquel; Benneter, Adam; Berthold, Felix; Bonal, Damien; Bouriaud, Olivier; Bruelheide, Helge; Bussotti, Filippo; Carnol, Monique; Castagneyrol, Bastien; Charbonnier, Yohan; Coomes, David; Coppi, Andrea; Bastias, Cristina C; Muhie Dawud, Seid; De Wandeler, Hans; Domisch, Timo; Finér, Leena; Gessler, Arthur; Granier, André; Grossiord, Charlotte; Guyot, Virginie; Hättenschwiler, Stephan; Jactel, Hervé; Jaroszewicz, Bogdan; Joly, François-Xavier; Jucker, Tommaso; Koricheva, Julia; Milligan, Harriet; Müller, Sandra; Muys, Bart; Nguyen, Diem; Pollastrini, Martina; Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten; Selvi, Federico; Stenlid, Jan; Valladares, Fernando; Vesterdal, Lars; Zielínski, Dawid; Fischer, Markus

    2016-01-01

    There is considerable evidence that biodiversity promotes multiple ecosystem functions (multifunctionality), thus ensuring the delivery of ecosystem services important for human well-being. However, the mechanisms underlying this relationship are poorly understood, especially in natural ecosystems. We develop a novel approach to partition biodiversity effects on multifunctionality into three mechanisms and apply this to European forest data. We show that throughout Europe, tree diversity is positively related with multifunctionality when moderate levels of functioning are required, but negatively when very high function levels are desired. For two well-known mechanisms, 'complementarity' and 'selection', we detect only minor effects on multifunctionality. Instead a third, so far overlooked mechanism, the 'jack-of-all-trades' effect, caused by the averaging of individual species effects on function, drives observed patterns. Simulations demonstrate that jack-of-all-trades effects occur whenever species effects on different functions are not perfectly correlated, meaning they may contribute to diversity-multifunctionality relationships in many of the world's ecosystems. PMID:27010076

  16. Marine Biodiversity in Juan Fernández and Desventuradas Islands, Chile: Global Endemism Hotspots.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Ballesteros, Enric; Caselle, Jennifer E; Gaymer, Carlos F; Palma, Alvaro T; Petit, Ignacio; Varas, Eduardo; Muñoz Wilson, Alex; Sala, Enric

    2016-01-01

    The Juan Fernández and Desventuradas islands are among the few oceanic islands belonging to Chile. They possess a unique mix of tropical, subtropical, and temperate marine species, and although close to continental South America, elements of the biota have greater affinities with the central and south Pacific owing to the Humboldt Current, which creates a strong biogeographic barrier between these islands and the continent. The Juan Fernández Archipelago has ~700 people, with the major industry being the fishery for the endemic lobster, Jasus frontalis. The Desventuradas Islands are uninhabited except for a small Chilean military garrison on San Félix Island. We compared the marine biodiversity of these islands across multiple taxonomic groups. At San Ambrosio Island (SA), in Desventuradas, the laminarian kelp (Eisenia cokeri), which is limited to Desventuradas in Chile, accounted for >50% of the benthic cover at wave exposed areas, while more sheltered sites were dominated by sea urchin barrens. The benthos at Robinson Crusoe Island (RC), in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, comprised a diverse mix of macroalgae and invertebrates, a number of which are endemic to the region. The biomass of commercially targeted fishes was >2 times higher in remote sites around RC compared to sheltered locations closest to port, and overall biomass was 35% higher around SA compared to RC, likely reflecting fishing effects around RC. The number of endemic fish species was extremely high at both islands, with 87.5% of the species surveyed at RC and 72% at SA consisting of regional endemics. Remarkably, endemics accounted for 99% of the numerical abundance of fishes surveyed at RC and 96% at SA, which is the highest assemblage-level endemism known for any individual marine ecosystem on earth. Our results highlight the uniqueness and global significance of these biodiversity hotspots exposed to very different fishing pressures.

  17. Marine Biodiversity in Juan Fernández and Desventuradas Islands, Chile: Global Endemism Hotspots

    PubMed Central

    Friedlander, Alan M.; Ballesteros, Enric; Caselle, Jennifer E.; Gaymer, Carlos F.; Palma, Alvaro T.; Petit, Ignacio; Varas, Eduardo; Muñoz Wilson, Alex; Sala, Enric

    2016-01-01

    The Juan Fernández and Desventuradas islands are among the few oceanic islands belonging to Chile. They possess a unique mix of tropical, subtropical, and temperate marine species, and although close to continental South America, elements of the biota have greater affinities with the central and south Pacific owing to the Humboldt Current, which creates a strong biogeographic barrier between these islands and the continent. The Juan Fernández Archipelago has ~700 people, with the major industry being the fishery for the endemic lobster, Jasus frontalis. The Desventuradas Islands are uninhabited except for a small Chilean military garrison on San Félix Island. We compared the marine biodiversity of these islands across multiple taxonomic groups. At San Ambrosio Island (SA), in Desventuradas, the laminarian kelp (Eisenia cokeri), which is limited to Desventuradas in Chile, accounted for >50% of the benthic cover at wave exposed areas, while more sheltered sites were dominated by sea urchin barrens. The benthos at Robinson Crusoe Island (RC), in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, comprised a diverse mix of macroalgae and invertebrates, a number of which are endemic to the region. The biomass of commercially targeted fishes was >2 times higher in remote sites around RC compared to sheltered locations closest to port, and overall biomass was 35% higher around SA compared to RC, likely reflecting fishing effects around RC. The number of endemic fish species was extremely high at both islands, with 87.5% of the species surveyed at RC and 72% at SA consisting of regional endemics. Remarkably, endemics accounted for 99% of the numerical abundance of fishes surveyed at RC and 96% at SA, which is the highest assemblage-level endemism known for any individual marine ecosystem on earth. Our results highlight the uniqueness and global significance of these biodiversity hotspots exposed to very different fishing pressures. PMID:26734732

  18. Marine Biodiversity in Juan Fernández and Desventuradas Islands, Chile: Global Endemism Hotspots.

    PubMed

    Friedlander, Alan M; Ballesteros, Enric; Caselle, Jennifer E; Gaymer, Carlos F; Palma, Alvaro T; Petit, Ignacio; Varas, Eduardo; Muñoz Wilson, Alex; Sala, Enric

    2016-01-01

    The Juan Fernández and Desventuradas islands are among the few oceanic islands belonging to Chile. They possess a unique mix of tropical, subtropical, and temperate marine species, and although close to continental South America, elements of the biota have greater affinities with the central and south Pacific owing to the Humboldt Current, which creates a strong biogeographic barrier between these islands and the continent. The Juan Fernández Archipelago has ~700 people, with the major industry being the fishery for the endemic lobster, Jasus frontalis. The Desventuradas Islands are uninhabited except for a small Chilean military garrison on San Félix Island. We compared the marine biodiversity of these islands across multiple taxonomic groups. At San Ambrosio Island (SA), in Desventuradas, the laminarian kelp (Eisenia cokeri), which is limited to Desventuradas in Chile, accounted for >50% of the benthic cover at wave exposed areas, while more sheltered sites were dominated by sea urchin barrens. The benthos at Robinson Crusoe Island (RC), in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, comprised a diverse mix of macroalgae and invertebrates, a number of which are endemic to the region. The biomass of commercially targeted fishes was >2 times higher in remote sites around RC compared to sheltered locations closest to port, and overall biomass was 35% higher around SA compared to RC, likely reflecting fishing effects around RC. The number of endemic fish species was extremely high at both islands, with 87.5% of the species surveyed at RC and 72% at SA consisting of regional endemics. Remarkably, endemics accounted for 99% of the numerical abundance of fishes surveyed at RC and 96% at SA, which is the highest assemblage-level endemism known for any individual marine ecosystem on earth. Our results highlight the uniqueness and global significance of these biodiversity hotspots exposed to very different fishing pressures. PMID:26734732

  19. The impact of shifts in marine biodiversity hotspots on patterns of range evolution: Evidence from the Holocentridae (squirrelfishes and soldierfishes).

    PubMed

    Dornburg, Alex; Moore, Jon; Beaulieu, Jeremy M; Eytan, Ron I; Near, Thomas J

    2015-01-01

    One of the most striking biodiversity patterns is the uneven distribution of marine species richness, with species diversity in the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA) exceeding all other areas. However, the IAA formed fairly recently, and marine biodiversity hotspots have shifted across nearly half the globe since the Paleogene. Understanding how lineages have responded to shifting biodiversity hotspots represents a necessary historic perspective on the formation and maintenance of global marine biodiversity. Such evolutionary inferences are often challenged by a lack of fossil evidence that provide insights into historic patterns of abundance and diversity. The greatest diversity of squirrelfishes and soldierfishes (Holocentridae) is in the IAA, yet these fishes also represent some of the most numerous fossil taxa in deposits of the former West Tethyan biodiversity hotspot. We reconstruct the pattern of holocentrid range evolution using time-calibrated phylogenies that include most living species and several fossil lineages, demonstrating the importance of including fossil species as terminal taxa in ancestral area reconstructions. Holocentrids exhibit increased range fragmentation following the West Tethyan hotspot collapse. However, rather than originating within the emerging IAA hotspot, the IAA has acted as a reservoir for holocentrid diversity that originated in adjacent regions over deep evolutionary time scales.

  20. Patterns of marine bacterioplankton biodiversity in the surface waters of the Scotia Arc, Southern Ocean.

    PubMed

    Jamieson, Rachel E; Rogers, Alex D; Billett, David S M; Smale, Dan A; Pearce, David A

    2012-05-01

    Spatial patchiness in marine surface bacterioplankton populations was investigated in the Southern Ocean, where the Antarctic Circumpolar Current meets the islands of the Scotia Arc and is subjected to terrestrial input, upwelling of nutrients and seasonal phytoplankton blooms. Total bacterioplankton population density, group-specific taxonomic distribution and six of eight dominant members of the bacterioplankton community were found to be consistent across 18 nearshore sites at eight locations around the Scotia Arc. Results from seven independent 16S rRNA gene clone libraries (1223 sequences in total) and fluorescent in situ hybridization suggested that microbial assemblages were predominantly homogeneous between Scotia Arc sites, where the Alphaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and the Cytophaga-Flavobacterium-Bacteroidetes cluster were the dominant bacterial groups. Of the 1223 useable sequences generated, 1087 (89%) shared ≥ 97% similarity with marine microorganisms and 331 (27%) matched published sequences previously detected in permanently cold Arctic and Antarctic marine environments. Taken together, results suggest that the dominant bacterioplankton groups are consistent between locations, but significant differences may be detected across the rare biodiversity. PMID:22273466

  1. An index based on the biodiversity of cetacean species to assess the environmental status of marine ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Azzellino, Arianna; Fossi, Maria Cristina; Gaspari, Stefania; Lanfredi, Caterina; Lauriano, Giancarlo; Marsili, Letizia; Panigada, Simone; Podestà, Michela

    2014-09-01

    The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) requires the assessment of the environmental status in relation to human pressures. In this study the biodiversity of the cetacean community is proposed as MSFD descriptor of the environmental status and its link with anthropogenic pressures is investigated. Functional groups are generally favoured over indicator species since they are thought to better reflect to anthropogenic stressors. Cetaceans are in many situations the most well known component of pelagic ecosystems. Their habitat requirements are known and can be used to evaluate the theoretical biodiversity that should be expected in a certain area. The deviations between the theoretical biodiversity and the actual biodiversity may be used to detect the impacts of human activities. Based on this analysis fishery resulted to be by far the most significant of the existing pressures. Among all the species, bottlenose dolphin was found the most correlated with the fishery sector dynamics.

  2. The use of DNA barcoding to monitor the marine mammal biodiversity along the French Atlantic coast.

    PubMed

    Alfonsi, Eric; Méheust, Eleonore; Fuchs, Sandra; Carpentier, François-Gilles; Quillivic, Yann; Viricel, Amélia; Hassani, Sami; Jung, Jean-Luc

    2013-12-30

    In the last ten years, 14 species of cetaceans and five species of pinnipeds stranded along the Atlantic coast of Brittany in the North West of France. All species included, an average of 150 animals strand each year in this area. Based on reports from the stranding network operating along this coast, the most common stranding events comprise six cetacean species (Delphinus delphis, Tursiops truncatus, Stenella coeruleoalba, Globicephala melas, Grampus griseus, Phocoena phocoena)and one pinniped species (Halichoerus grypus). Rare stranding events include deep-diving or exotic species, such as arctic seals. In this study, our aim was to determine the potential contribution of DNA barcoding to the monitoring of marine mammal biodiversity as performed by the stranding network. We sequenced more than 500 bp of the 5' end of the mitochondrial COI gene of 89 animals of 15 different species (12 cetaceans, and three pinnipeds). Except for members of the Delphininae, all species were unambiguously discriminated on the basis of their COI sequences. We then applied DNA barcoding to identify some "undetermined" samples. With again the exception of the Delphininae, this was successful using the BOLD identification engine. For samples of the Delphininae, we sequenced a portion of the mitochondrial control region (MCR), and using a non-metric multidimentional scaling plot and posterior probability calculations we were able to determine putatively each species. We then showed, in the case of the harbour porpoise, that COI polymorphisms, although being lower than MCR ones, could also be used to assess intraspecific variability. All these results show that the use of DNA barcoding in conjunction with a stranding network could clearly increase the accuracy of the monitoring of marine mammal biodiversity. PMID:24453548

  3. The use of DNA barcoding to monitor the marine mammal biodiversity along the French Atlantic coast

    PubMed Central

    Alfonsi, Eric; Méheust, Eleonore; Fuchs, Sandra; Carpentier, François-Gilles; Quillivic, Yann; Viricel, Amélia; Hassani, Sami; Jung, Jean-Luc

    2013-01-01

    Abstract In the last ten years, 14 species of cetaceans and five species of pinnipeds stranded along the Atlantic coast of Brittany in the North West of France. All species included, an average of 150 animals strand each year in this area. Based on reports from the stranding network operating along this coast, the most common stranding events comprise six cetacean species (Delphinus delphis, Tursiops truncatus, Stenella coeruleoalba, Globicephala melas, Grampus griseus, Phocoena phocoena)and one pinniped species (Halichoerus grypus). Rare stranding events include deep-diving or exotic species, such as arctic seals. In this study, our aim was to determine the potential contribution of DNA barcoding to the monitoring of marine mammal biodiversity as performed by the stranding network. We sequenced more than 500 bp of the 5’ end of the mitochondrial COI gene of 89 animals of 15 different species (12 cetaceans, and three pinnipeds). Except for members of the Delphininae, all species were unambiguously discriminated on the basis of their COI sequences. We then applied DNA barcoding to identify some “undetermined” samples. With again the exception of the Delphininae, this was successful using the BOLD identification engine. For samples of the Delphininae, we sequenced a portion of the mitochondrial control region (MCR), and using a non-metric multidimentional scaling plot and posterior probability calculations we were able to determine putatively each species. We then showed, in the case of the harbour porpoise, that COI polymorphisms, although being lower than MCR ones, could also be used to assess intraspecific variability. All these results show that the use of DNA barcoding in conjunction with a stranding network could clearly increase the accuracy of the monitoring of marine mammal biodiversity. PMID:24453548

  4. Biodiversity and paleobiogeography of the European freshwater Neogene: trends, hotspots and faunal turnovers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neubauer, Thomas A.; Harzhauser, Mathias; Georgopoulou, Elisavet; Andreas, Kroh; Mandic, Oleg

    2015-04-01

    We present an outline of a paleobiogeographic framework for the European fresh- and brackish-water systems during the Neogene. Data basis is a presence-absence matrix of lacustrine gastropods from over 2,700 localities. Cluster analyses were separately carried out on the datasets of the four time slices Early Miocene, Middle Miocene, Late Miocene, and Pliocene. Based on the results of the cluster analyses, the degree of endemicity, and geographical coherence, we classified the lake systems of the four time intervals into biogeographic units. The increasing degree of provincialism throughout the Neogene supported more detailed breakdowns in younger intervals. This pattern reflects the ongoing continentalization of Europe linked to the Alpidic Orogenesis. Additionally, the retreat of the Paratethys Sea and its isolation from the Mediterranean promoted the evolution of endemic faunas in surrounding lacustrine systems. Direct descendants such as long-lived Lake Pannon, Lake Dacia or Lake Slavonia persisted over several millions of years and promoted the evolution of highly diverse and endemic faunas. Because of their extensive duration they crucially influenced family-level composition, differences of the relative species richnesses per biogeographic unit, and rising rate of endemicity. We show that the biogeographic classification as well as the existence of biodiversity hotspots are tightly linked to the formation and evolution of long-lived lacustrine environments and thus to Europe's geodynamic history. Heat maps are provided to visualize the shifting distributions of hotspots through time. The only physiographic factor that can be shown to be correlated with species richness is the size of a lake. Other factors such as latitude, longitude or temporal duration show weak relationships. Correlation of biodiversity trends to climatic parameters such as temperature and precipitation are feasible only for selected periods. Climate is considered to have only minor

  5. Out of sight, out of mind: threats to the marine biodiversity of the Canary Islands (NE Atlantic Ocean).

    PubMed

    Riera, Rodrigo; Becerro, Mikel A; Stuart-Smith, Rick D; Delgado, Juan D; Edgar, Graham J

    2014-09-15

    Lack of knowledge of the marine realm may bias our perception of the current status and threats to marine biodiversity. Less than 10% of all ecological literature is related to the ocean, and the information we have on marine species that are threatened or on the verge of extinction is scarce. This lack of information is particularly critical for isolated areas such as oceanic archipelagos. Here we review published and grey literature on the current status of marine organisms in the Canary Islands as a case description of the consequences that current out-of-sight out-of-mind attitudes may have on this unique environment. Global change, as represented by coastal development, pollution, exotic species and climate change, are currently affecting the distribution and abundance of Canarian marine organisms, and pose multiple threats to local species and communities. Environmental risks are significant at community and species levels, particularly for threatened species. Failure to address these trends will result in shifts in local biodiversity with important ecological, social, and economic consequences. Scientists, policy makers, educators, and relevant societal groups need to collaborate to reverse deleterious coastal biodiversity trends.

  6. Antarctic Marine Biodiversity – What Do We Know About the Distribution of Life in the Southern Ocean?

    PubMed Central

    Griffiths, Huw J.

    2010-01-01

    The remote and hostile Southern Ocean is home to a diverse and rich community of life that thrives in an environment dominated by glaciations and strong currents. Marine biological studies in the region date back to the nineteenth century, but despite this long history of research, relatively little is known about the complex interactions between the highly seasonal physical environment and the species that inhabit the Southern Ocean. Oceanographically, the Southern Ocean is a major driver of global ocean circulation and plays a vital role in interacting with the deep water circulation in each of the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian oceans. The Census of Antarctic Marine Life and the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research Marine Biodiversity Information Network (SCAR-MarBIN) have strived to coordinate and unify the available scientific expertise and biodiversity data to improve our understanding of Southern Ocean biodiversity. Taxonomic lists for all marine species have been compiled to form the Register of Antarctic Marine Species, which currently includes over 8,200 species. SCAR-MarBIN has brought together over 1 million distribution records for Southern Ocean species, forming a baseline against which future change can be judged. The sample locations and numbers of known species from different regions were mapped and the depth distributions of benthic samples plotted. Our knowledge of the biodiversity of the Southern Ocean is largely determined by the relative inaccessibility of the region. Benthic sampling is largely restricted to the shelf; little is known about the fauna of the deep sea. The location of scientific bases heavily influences the distribution pattern of sample and observation data, and the logistical supply routes are the focus of much of the at-sea and pelagic work. Taxa such as mollusks and echinoderms are well represented within existing datasets with high numbers of georeferenced records. Other taxa, including the species-rich nematodes, are

  7. Connectivity, biodiversity conservation and the design of marine reserve networks for coral reefs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Almany, G. R.; Connolly, S. R.; Heath, D. D.; Hogan, J. D.; Jones, G. P.; McCook, L. J.; Mills, M.; Pressey, R. L.; Williamson, D. H.

    2009-06-01

    Networks of no-take reserves are important for protecting coral reef biodiversity from climate change and other human impacts. Ensuring that reserve populations are connected to each other and non-reserve populations by larval dispersal allows for recovery from disturbance and is a key aspect of resilience. In general, connectivity between reserves should increase as the distance between them decreases. However, enhancing connectivity may often tradeoff against a network’s ability to representatively sample the system’s natural variability. This “representation” objective is typically measured in terms of species richness or diversity of habitats, but has other important elements (e.g., minimizing the risk that multiple reserves will be impacted by catastrophic events). Such representation objectives tend to be better achieved as reserves become more widely spaced. Thus, optimizing the location, size and spacing of reserves requires both an understanding of larval dispersal and explicit consideration of how well the network represents the broader system; indeed the lack of an integrated theory for optimizing tradeoffs between connectivity and representation objectives has inhibited the incorporation of connectivity into reserve selection algorithms. This article addresses these issues by (1) updating general recommendations for the location, size and spacing of reserves based on emerging data on larval dispersal in corals and reef fishes, and on considerations for maintaining genetic diversity; (2) using a spatial analysis of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park to examine potential tradeoffs between connectivity and representation of biodiversity and (3) describing a framework for incorporating environmental fluctuations into the conceptualization of the tradeoff between connectivity and representation, and that expresses both in a common, demographically meaningful currency, thus making optimization possible.

  8. High-Throughput Sequencing—The Key to Rapid Biodiversity Assessment of Marine Metazoa?

    PubMed Central

    Mohrbeck, Inga; Raupach, Michael J.; Martínez Arbizu, Pedro; Knebelsberger, Thomas; Laakmann, Silke

    2015-01-01

    The applications of traditional morphological and molecular methods for species identification are greatly restricted by processing speed and on a regional or greater scale are generally considered unfeasible. In this context, high-throughput sequencing, or metagenetics, has been proposed as an efficient tool to document biodiversity. Here we evaluated the effectiveness of 454 pyrosequencing in marine metazoan community analysis using the 18S rDNA: V1-V2 region. Multiplex pyrosequencing of the V1-V2 region was used to analyze two pooled samples of DNA, one comprising 118 and the other 37 morphologically identified species, and one natural sample taken directly from a North Sea zooplankton community. A DNA reference library comprising all species represented in the pooled samples was created by Sanger sequencing, and this was then used to determine the optimal similarity threshold for species delineation. The optimal threshold was found at 99% species similarity, with 85% identification success. Pyrosequencing was able to identify between fewer species: 67% and 78% of the species in the two pooled samples. Also, a large number of sequences for three species that were not included in the pooled samples were amplified by pyrosequencing, suggesting preferential amplification of some genotypes and the sensitivity of this approach to even low levels of contamination. Conversely, metagenetic analysis of the natural zooplankton sample identified many more species (particularly gelatinous zooplankton and meroplankton) than morphological analysis of a formalin-fixed sample from the same sampling site, suggesting an increased level of taxonomic resolution with pyrosequencing. The study demonstrated that, based on the V1-V2 region, 454 sequencing does not provide accurate species differentiation and reliable taxonomic classification, as it is required in most biodiversity monitoring. The analysis of artificially prepared samples indicated that species detection in

  9. Anthropogenic disturbance and biodiversity of marine benthic communities in Antarctica: a regional comparison.

    PubMed

    Stark, Jonathan S; Kim, Stacy L; Oliver, John S

    2014-01-01

    The impacts of two Antarctic stations in different regions, on marine sediment macrofaunal communities were compared: McMurdo, a very large station in the Ross Sea; and Casey, a more typical small station in East Antarctica. Community structure and diversity were compared along a gradient of anthropogenic disturbance from heavily contaminated to uncontaminated locations. We examined some of the inherent problems in comparing data from unrelated studies, such as different sampling methods, spatial and temporal scales of sampling and taxonomic uncertainty. These issues generated specific biases which were taken into account when interpreting patterns. Control sites in the two regions had very different communities but both were dominated by crustaceans. Community responses to anthropogenic disturbance (sediment contamination by metals, oils and sewage) were also different. At McMurdo the proportion of crustaceans decreased in disturbed areas and polychaetes became dominant, whereas at Casey, crustaceans increased in response to disturbance, largely through an increase in amphipods. Despite differing overall community responses there were some common elements. Ostracods, cumaceans and echinoderms were sensitive to disturbance in both regions. Capitellid, dorvelleid and orbiniid polychaetes were indicative of disturbed sites. Amphipods, isopods and tanaids had different responses at each station. Biodiversity and taxonomic distinctness were significantly lower at disturbed locations in both regions. The size of the impact, however, was not related to the level of contamination, with a larger reduction in biodiversity at Casey, the smaller, less polluted station. The impacts of small stations, with low to moderate levels of contamination, can thus be as great as those of large or heavily contaminated stations. Regional broad scale environmental influences may be important in determining the composition of communities and thus their response to disturbance, but there are

  10. Anthropogenic Disturbance and Biodiversity of Marine Benthic Communities in Antarctica: A Regional Comparison

    PubMed Central

    Stark, Jonathan S.; Kim, Stacy L.; Oliver, John S.

    2014-01-01

    The impacts of two Antarctic stations in different regions, on marine sediment macrofaunal communities were compared: McMurdo, a very large station in the Ross Sea; and Casey, a more typical small station in East Antarctica. Community structure and diversity were compared along a gradient of anthropogenic disturbance from heavily contaminated to uncontaminated locations. We examined some of the inherent problems in comparing data from unrelated studies, such as different sampling methods, spatial and temporal scales of sampling and taxonomic uncertainty. These issues generated specific biases which were taken into account when interpreting patterns. Control sites in the two regions had very different communities but both were dominated by crustaceans. Community responses to anthropogenic disturbance (sediment contamination by metals, oils and sewage) were also different. At McMurdo the proportion of crustaceans decreased in disturbed areas and polychaetes became dominant, whereas at Casey, crustaceans increased in response to disturbance, largely through an increase in amphipods. Despite differing overall community responses there were some common elements. Ostracods, cumaceans and echinoderms were sensitive to disturbance in both regions. Capitellid, dorvelleid and orbiniid polychaetes were indicative of disturbed sites. Amphipods, isopods and tanaids had different responses at each station. Biodiversity and taxonomic distinctness were significantly lower at disturbed locations in both regions. The size of the impact, however, was not related to the level of contamination, with a larger reduction in biodiversity at Casey, the smaller, less polluted station. The impacts of small stations, with low to moderate levels of contamination, can thus be as great as those of large or heavily contaminated stations. Regional broad scale environmental influences may be important in determining the composition of communities and thus their response to disturbance, but there are

  11. Biodiversity of European grasslands - gradient studies to investigate impacts of atmospheric nitrogen deposition on grasslands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, C. J.; Gowing, D. J.

    2009-04-01

    Experiments have suggested that reactive nitrogen deposition may reduce species richness in plant communities. However, until recently there was no clear evidence that regional air pollution was actually reducing biodiversity on a regional scale.. An extensive field survey of acidic grasslands along a gradient of atmospheric nitrogen deposition in the UK showed a dramatic decline in plant-species richness with increasing atmospheric nitrogen deposition [1, 2]. Changes in soil chemistry were also observed [3]. Combining the results of this gradient study with experimental manipulations allowed us to estimate the timescale of the observed change in species richness. The BEGIN project (Biodiversity of European Grasslands - the Impact of Atmospheric Nitrogen Deposition) is a collaborative EUROCORES project between The Open University (UK), Manchester Metropolitan University (UK), Bordeaux University (France), Utrecht University (The Netherlands) and The University of Bremen (Germany). This project builds on the results collected in the UK survey to investigate changes in species richness further. In addition to the 68 acid grasslands already surveyed in the UK, the BEGIN project has surveyed 70 acidic grassland sites throughout the Atlantic biogeographic region of Europe. At each site, data were collected on species composition, soil chemistry and plant-tissue chemistry. This data set is being combined with a field experiment replicated across three grasslands (Norway, Wales and Aquitaine) of the same community and an analysis of historical changes in species composition. Surveys have also been conducted in a contrasting grassland system; calcareous grasslands belonging to the Mesobromion alliance. Initial results of the BEGIN project will be presented, demonstrating declines in species richness and changes in species composition across the Atlantic Biogeographic Zone of Europe during the last 70 years that can be related to nitrogen deposition. We will also report

  12. Lack of recognition of genetic biodiversity: International policy and its implementation in Baltic Sea marine protected areas.

    PubMed

    Laikre, Linda; Lundmark, Carina; Jansson, Eeva; Wennerström, Lovisa; Edman, Mari; Sandström, Annica

    2016-10-01

    Genetic diversity is needed for species' adaptation to changing selective pressures and is particularly important in regions with rapid environmental change such as the Baltic Sea. Conservation measures should consider maintaining large gene pools to maximize species' adaptive potential for long-term survival. In this study, we explored concerns regarding genetic variation in international and national policies that governs biodiversity and evaluated if and how such policy is put into practice in management plans governing Baltic Sea Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Sweden, Finland, Estonia, and Germany. We performed qualitative and quantitative textual analysis of 240 documents and found that agreed international and national policies on genetic biodiversity are not reflected in management plans for Baltic Sea MPAs. Management plans in all countries are largely void of goals and strategies for genetic biodiversity, which can partly be explained by a general lack of conservation genetics in policies directed toward aquatic environments. PMID:27098316

  13. Lack of recognition of genetic biodiversity: International policy and its implementation in Baltic Sea marine protected areas.

    PubMed

    Laikre, Linda; Lundmark, Carina; Jansson, Eeva; Wennerström, Lovisa; Edman, Mari; Sandström, Annica

    2016-10-01

    Genetic diversity is needed for species' adaptation to changing selective pressures and is particularly important in regions with rapid environmental change such as the Baltic Sea. Conservation measures should consider maintaining large gene pools to maximize species' adaptive potential for long-term survival. In this study, we explored concerns regarding genetic variation in international and national policies that governs biodiversity and evaluated if and how such policy is put into practice in management plans governing Baltic Sea Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Sweden, Finland, Estonia, and Germany. We performed qualitative and quantitative textual analysis of 240 documents and found that agreed international and national policies on genetic biodiversity are not reflected in management plans for Baltic Sea MPAs. Management plans in all countries are largely void of goals and strategies for genetic biodiversity, which can partly be explained by a general lack of conservation genetics in policies directed toward aquatic environments.

  14. The role of a dominant predator in shaping biodiversity over space and time in a marine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Ellingsen, Kari E; Anderson, Marti J; Shackell, Nancy L; Tveraa, Torkild; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Frank, Kenneth T

    2015-09-01

    1. Exploitation of living marine resources has resulted in major changes to populations of targeted species and functional groups of large-bodied species in the ocean. However, the effects of overfishing and collapse of large top predators on the broad-scale biodiversity of oceanic ecosystems remain largely unexplored. 2. Populations of the Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) were overfished and several collapsed in the early 1990s across Atlantic Canada, providing a unique opportunity to study potential ecosystem-level effects of the reduction of a dominant predator on fish biodiversity, and to identify how such effects might interact with other environmental factors, such as changes in climate, over time. 3. We combined causal modelling with model selection and multimodel inference to analyse 41 years of fishery-independent survey data (1970-2010) and quantify ecosystem-level effects of overfishing and climate variation on the biodiversity of fishes across a broad area (172 000 km(2) ) of the Scotian Shelf. 4. We found that alpha and beta diversity increased with decreases in cod occurrence; fish communities were less homogeneous and more variable in systems where cod no longer dominated. These effects were most pronounced in the colder north-eastern parts of the Scotian Shelf. 5. Our results provide strong evidence that intensive harvesting (and collapse) of marine apex predators can have large impacts on biodiversity, with far-reaching consequences for ecological stability across an entire ecosystem. PMID:25981204

  15. The role of a dominant predator in shaping biodiversity over space and time in a marine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Ellingsen, Kari E; Anderson, Marti J; Shackell, Nancy L; Tveraa, Torkild; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Frank, Kenneth T

    2015-09-01

    1. Exploitation of living marine resources has resulted in major changes to populations of targeted species and functional groups of large-bodied species in the ocean. However, the effects of overfishing and collapse of large top predators on the broad-scale biodiversity of oceanic ecosystems remain largely unexplored. 2. Populations of the Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) were overfished and several collapsed in the early 1990s across Atlantic Canada, providing a unique opportunity to study potential ecosystem-level effects of the reduction of a dominant predator on fish biodiversity, and to identify how such effects might interact with other environmental factors, such as changes in climate, over time. 3. We combined causal modelling with model selection and multimodel inference to analyse 41 years of fishery-independent survey data (1970-2010) and quantify ecosystem-level effects of overfishing and climate variation on the biodiversity of fishes across a broad area (172 000 km(2) ) of the Scotian Shelf. 4. We found that alpha and beta diversity increased with decreases in cod occurrence; fish communities were less homogeneous and more variable in systems where cod no longer dominated. These effects were most pronounced in the colder north-eastern parts of the Scotian Shelf. 5. Our results provide strong evidence that intensive harvesting (and collapse) of marine apex predators can have large impacts on biodiversity, with far-reaching consequences for ecological stability across an entire ecosystem.

  16. Improving marine biodiversity offsetting: A proposed methodology for better assessing losses and gains.

    PubMed

    Bas, Adeline; Jacob, Céline; Hay, Julien; Pioch, Sylvain; Thorin, Sébastien

    2016-06-15

    Although the limitations of implementing the mitigation hierarchy have been widely discussed in scientific literature, these studies have drawn mainly on feedback concerning terrestrial ecosystems. In the case of development projects in marine and coastal environments, certain issues must be tackled to improve existing practice. This article focuses on the methodologies used to assess both the ecological losses resulting from a development project and the ecological gains generated by an offset measure. The originality of this article is to propose a standardized, operational approach regardless of the development project and the ecosystem impacted that (i) enhances avoidance and reduction efforts and (ii) assesses biodiversity offset needs based on data available in Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs). The proposed hybrid method combines a multi-criteria analysis of the state of the environment, inspired by the Unified Mitigation Assessment Method (UMAM), and a more accurate assessment at indicator level inspired by Habitat Equivalency Analysis (HEA). The steps of the method, from the selection of biophysical indicators to offset sizing, are described and are then applied to two EIA case studies: one related to a port extension and the other to an offshore wind farm. PMID:27019359

  17. Revealing the Appetite of the Marine Aquarium Fish Trade: The Volume and Biodiversity of Fish Imported into the United States

    PubMed Central

    Rhyne, Andrew L.; Tlusty, Michael F.; Schofield, Pamela J.; Kaufman, Les; Morris, James A.; Bruckner, Andrew W.

    2012-01-01

    The aquarium trade and other wildlife consumers are at a crossroads forced by threats from global climate change and other anthropogenic stressors that have weakened coastal ecosystems. While the wildlife trade may put additional stress on coral reefs, it brings income into impoverished parts of the world and may stimulate interest in marine conservation. To better understand the influence of the trade, we must first be able to quantify coral reef fauna moving through it. Herein, we discuss the lack of a data system for monitoring the wildlife aquarium trade and analyze problems that arise when trying to monitor the trade using a system not specifically designed for this purpose. To do this, we examined an entire year of import records of marine tropical fish entering the United States in detail, and discuss the relationship between trade volume, biodiversity and introduction of non-native marine fishes. Our analyses showed that biodiversity levels are higher than previous estimates. Additionally, more than half of government importation forms have numerical or other reporting discrepancies resulting in the overestimation of trade volumes by 27%. While some commonly imported species have been introduced into the coastal waters of the USA (as expected), we also found that some uncommon species in the trade have also been introduced. This is the first study of aquarium trade imports to compare commercial invoices to government forms and provides a means to, routinely and in real time, examine the biodiversity of the trade in coral reef wildlife species. PMID:22629303

  18. Revealing the appetite of the marine aquarium fish trade: the volume and biodiversity of fish imported into the United States.

    PubMed

    Rhyne, Andrew L; Tlusty, Michael F; Schofield, Pamela J; Kaufman, Les; Morris, James A; Bruckner, Andrew W

    2012-01-01

    The aquarium trade and other wildlife consumers are at a crossroads forced by threats from global climate change and other anthropogenic stressors that have weakened coastal ecosystems. While the wildlife trade may put additional stress on coral reefs, it brings income into impoverished parts of the world and may stimulate interest in marine conservation. To better understand the influence of the trade, we must first be able to quantify coral reef fauna moving through it. Herein, we discuss the lack of a data system for monitoring the wildlife aquarium trade and analyze problems that arise when trying to monitor the trade using a system not specifically designed for this purpose. To do this, we examined an entire year of import records of marine tropical fish entering the United States in detail, and discuss the relationship between trade volume, biodiversity and introduction of non-native marine fishes. Our analyses showed that biodiversity levels are higher than previous estimates. Additionally, more than half of government importation forms have numerical or other reporting discrepancies resulting in the overestimation of trade volumes by 27%. While some commonly imported species have been introduced into the coastal waters of the USA (as expected), we also found that some uncommon species in the trade have also been introduced. This is the first study of aquarium trade imports to compare commercial invoices to government forms and provides a means to, routinely and in real time, examine the biodiversity of the trade in coral reef wildlife species.

  19. Revealing the appetite of the marine aquarium fish trade: the volume and biodiversity of fish imported into the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rhyne, Andrew L.; Tlusty, Michael F.; Schofield, Pamela J.; Kaufman, Les; Morris, James A.; Bruckner, Andrew W.

    2012-01-01

    The aquarium trade and other wildlife consumers are at a crossroads forced by threats from global climate change and other anthropogenic stressors that have weakened coastal ecosystems. While the wildlife trade may put additional stress on coral reefs, it brings income into impoverished parts of the world and may stimulate interest in marine conservation. To better understand the influence of the trade, we must first be able to quantify coral reef fauna moving through it. Herein, we discuss the lack of a data system for monitoring the wildlife aquarium trade and analyze problems that arise when trying to monitor the trade using a system not specifically designed for this purpose. To do this, we examined an entire year of import records of marine tropical fish entering the United States in detail, and discuss the relationship between trade volume, biodiversity and introduction of non-native marine fishes. Our analyses showed that biodiversity levels are higher than previous estimates. Additionally, more than half of government importation forms have numerical or other reporting discrepancies resulting in the overestimation of trade volumes by 27%. While some commonly imported species have been introduced into the coastal waters of the USA (as expected), we also found that some uncommon species in the trade have also been introduced. This is the first study of aquarium trade imports to compare commercial invoices to government forms and provides a means to, routinely and in real time, examine the biodiversity of the trade in coral reef wildlife species.

  20. Perspectives in marine science: A European point of view

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barthel, K.-G.

    1995-03-01

    Marine research has always been a field in science which was particularly open to, and at times dependent on, international cooperation, and this has become even more obvious during the last decade when issues of global change became central to any discussion. The global nature of scientific and other problems, required the development of new concepts and led to the establishment of new structures in research, coordination and funding on an international level. In Europe the 12 member European Community often served as a nucleus for larger networks and initiatives (e.g. COST, EUREKA), and in 1989 the EC itself launched a specific programme on marine research and technology (MAST). The various initiatives are not meant to replace, national efforts but to complement them — where added value arises from international cooperation, e.g. in global programmes like IGBP, WCRP and their various core projects. The focus of support for these programmes through international funding agencies and networks is not primarily on additional research money but more on structural support and coordination. In contrast, the MAST targeted projects on the North Atlantic margin and the Mediterranean also receive substantial basic support, and are designed to fill gaps left by other international research projects. Both EC and other projects profit from the coordinating measures offered by the EC Commission. A more efficient use of facilities (research vessels, special equipment) can be achieved by having central information services. Well-integrated international projects also require additional efforts in standardization of instrumentation, methods and units, with respect to sampling, sample processing and data treatment. Furthermore, the scope of the task to tackle questions of global change demands the development of new technologies like ROVs, biosensors, automatized sample and data acquisition and treatment, etc. Full exploitation of the results in scientific, political and

  1. Impacts of European livestock production: nitrogen, sulphur, phosphorus and greenhouse gas emissions, land-use, water eutrophication and biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leip, Adrian; Billen, Gilles; Garnier, Josette; Grizzetti, Bruna; Lassaletta, Luis; Reis, Stefan; Simpson, David; Sutton, Mark A.; de Vries, Wim; Weiss, Franz; Westhoek, Henk

    2015-11-01

    Livestock production systems currently occupy around 28% of the land surface of the European Union (equivalent to 65% of the agricultural land). In conjunction with other human activities, livestock production systems affect water, air and soil quality, global climate and biodiversity, altering the biogeochemical cycles of nitrogen, phosphorus and carbon. Here, we quantify the contribution of European livestock production to these major impacts. For each environmental effect, the contribution of livestock is expressed as shares of the emitted compounds and land used, as compared to the whole agricultural sector. The results show that the livestock sector contributes significantly to agricultural environmental impacts. This contribution is 78% for terrestrial biodiversity loss, 80% for soil acidification and air pollution (ammonia and nitrogen oxides emissions), 81% for global warming, and 73% for water pollution (both N and P). The agriculture sector itself is one of the major contributors to these environmental impacts, ranging between 12% for global warming and 59% for N water quality impact. Significant progress in mitigating these environmental impacts in Europe will only be possible through a combination of technological measures reducing livestock emissions, improved food choices and reduced food waste of European citizens.

  2. A bioturbation classification of European marine infaunal invertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Queirós, Ana M; Birchenough, Silvana N R; Bremner, Julie; Godbold, Jasmin A; Parker, Ruth E; Romero-Ramirez, Alicia; Reiss, Henning; Solan, Martin; Somerfield, Paul J; Van Colen, Carl; Van Hoey, Gert; Widdicombe, Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Bioturbation, the biogenic modification of sediments through particle reworking and burrow ventilation, is a key mediator of many important geochemical processes in marine systems. In situ quantification of bioturbation can be achieved in a myriad of ways, requiring expert knowledge, technology, and resources not always available, and not feasible in some settings. Where dedicated research programmes do not exist, a practical alternative is the adoption of a trait-based approach to estimate community bioturbation potential (BPc). This index can be calculated from inventories of species, abundance and biomass data (routinely available for many systems), and a functional classification of organism traits associated with sediment mixing (less available). Presently, however, there is no agreed standard categorization for the reworking mode and mobility of benthic species. Based on information from the literature and expert opinion, we provide a functional classification for 1033 benthic invertebrate species from the northwest European continental shelf, as a tool to enable the standardized calculation of BPc in the region. Future uses of this classification table will increase the comparability and utility of large-scale assessments of ecosystem processes and functioning influenced by bioturbation (e.g., to support legislation). The key strengths, assumptions, and limitations of BPc as a metric are critically reviewed, offering guidelines for its calculation and application. PMID:24198953

  3. A bioturbation classification of European marine infaunal invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Queirós, Ana M; Birchenough, Silvana N R; Bremner, Julie; Godbold, Jasmin A; Parker, Ruth E; Romero-Ramirez, Alicia; Reiss, Henning; Solan, Martin; Somerfield, Paul J; Van Colen, Carl; Van Hoey, Gert; Widdicombe, Stephen

    2013-10-01

    Bioturbation, the biogenic modification of sediments through particle reworking and burrow ventilation, is a key mediator of many important geochemical processes in marine systems. In situ quantification of bioturbation can be achieved in a myriad of ways, requiring expert knowledge, technology, and resources not always available, and not feasible in some settings. Where dedicated research programmes do not exist, a practical alternative is the adoption of a trait-based approach to estimate community bioturbation potential (BPc). This index can be calculated from inventories of species, abundance and biomass data (routinely available for many systems), and a functional classification of organism traits associated with sediment mixing (less available). Presently, however, there is no agreed standard categorization for the reworking mode and mobility of benthic species. Based on information from the literature and expert opinion, we provide a functional classification for 1033 benthic invertebrate species from the northwest European continental shelf, as a tool to enable the standardized calculation of BPc in the region. Future uses of this classification table will increase the comparability and utility of large-scale assessments of ecosystem processes and functioning influenced by bioturbation (e.g., to support legislation). The key strengths, assumptions, and limitations of BPc as a metric are critically reviewed, offering guidelines for its calculation and application. PMID:24198953

  4. Recreational SCUBA divers' willingness to pay for marine biodiversity in Barbados.

    PubMed

    Schuhmann, Peter W; Casey, James F; Horrocks, Julia A; Oxenford, Hazel A

    2013-05-30

    The use of natural resources and the services they provide often do not have an explicit price and are therefore undervalued in decision-making, leading to environmental degradation. To 'monetize' the benefits from these services requires the use of non-market valuation techniques. Using a stated preference survey of recreational divers in Barbados conducted between 2007 and 2009, the economic value of marine biodiversity to recreational SCUBA divers in Barbados was estimated. In addition to a variety of demographic variables, divers were asked about their level of experience, expenditures related to travel and diving, and encounters with fish and sea turtles. Divers then completed a choice experiment, selecting between alternative dives with varying characteristics including price, crowding, fish diversity, encounters with sea turtles, and coral cover. Results indicate that divers in Barbados have a clear appreciation of reef quality variables. Willingness to pay for good coral cover, fish diversity and presence of sea turtles is significantly higher than prices paid for dives. In general, divers valued reef attributes similarly, although their appreciation of low density of divers at a site and high coral cover varied with prior diving experience. The results of this study demonstrate the economic value generated in Barbados by the recreational SCUBA diving industry and highlight the potential for substantial additional economic contributions with improvements to the quality of a variety of reef attributes. These results could inform management decisions regarding reef use and sea turtle conservation, and could aid in the development of informed 'win-win' policies aimed at maximizing returns from diving while reducing negative impacts often associated with tourism activities. PMID:23523829

  5. Rebuilding Biodiversity of Patagonian Marine Molluscs after the End-Cretaceous Mass Extinction

    PubMed Central

    Aberhan, Martin; Kiessling, Wolfgang

    2014-01-01

    We analysed field-collected quantitative data of benthic marine molluscs across the Cretaceous–Palaeogene boundary in Patagonia to identify patterns and processes of biodiversity reconstruction after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction. We contrast diversity dynamics from nearshore environments with those from offshore environments. In both settings, Early Palaeogene (Danian) assemblages are strongly dominated by surviving lineages, many of which changed their relative abundance from being rare before the extinction event to becoming the new dominant forms. Only a few of the species in the Danian assemblages were newly evolved. In offshore environments, however, two newly evolved Danian bivalve species attained ecological dominance by replacing two ecologically equivalent species that disappeared at the end of the Cretaceous. In both settings, the total number of Danian genera at a locality remained below the total number of late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) genera at that locality. We suggest that biotic interactions, in particular incumbency effects, suppressed post-extinction diversity and prevented the compensation of diversity loss by originating and invading taxa. Contrary to the total number of genera at localities, diversity at the level of individual fossiliferous horizons before and after the boundary is indistinguishable in offshore environments. This indicates an evolutionary rapid rebound to pre-extinction values within less than ca 0.5 million years. In nearshore environments, by contrast, diversity of fossiliferous horizons was reduced in the Danian, and this lowered diversity lasted for the entire studied post-extinction interval. In this heterogeneous environment, low connectivity among populations may have retarded the recolonisation of nearshore habitats by survivors. PMID:25028930

  6. Rebuilding biodiversity of Patagonian marine molluscs after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction.

    PubMed

    Aberhan, Martin; Kiessling, Wolfgang

    2014-01-01

    We analysed field-collected quantitative data of benthic marine molluscs across the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary in Patagonia to identify patterns and processes of biodiversity reconstruction after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction. We contrast diversity dynamics from nearshore environments with those from offshore environments. In both settings, Early Palaeogene (Danian) assemblages are strongly dominated by surviving lineages, many of which changed their relative abundance from being rare before the extinction event to becoming the new dominant forms. Only a few of the species in the Danian assemblages were newly evolved. In offshore environments, however, two newly evolved Danian bivalve species attained ecological dominance by replacing two ecologically equivalent species that disappeared at the end of the Cretaceous. In both settings, the total number of Danian genera at a locality remained below the total number of late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) genera at that locality. We suggest that biotic interactions, in particular incumbency effects, suppressed post-extinction diversity and prevented the compensation of diversity loss by originating and invading taxa. Contrary to the total number of genera at localities, diversity at the level of individual fossiliferous horizons before and after the boundary is indistinguishable in offshore environments. This indicates an evolutionary rapid rebound to pre-extinction values within less than ca 0.5 million years. In nearshore environments, by contrast, diversity of fossiliferous horizons was reduced in the Danian, and this lowered diversity lasted for the entire studied post-extinction interval. In this heterogeneous environment, low connectivity among populations may have retarded the recolonisation of nearshore habitats by survivors.

  7. Convergence, divergence, and parallelism in marine biodiversity trends: Integrating present-day and fossil data

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Shan; Roy, Kaustuv; Valentine, James W.; Jablonski, David

    2015-01-01

    Paleontological data provide essential insights into the processes shaping the spatial distribution of present-day biodiversity. Here, we combine biogeographic data with the fossil record to investigate the roles of parallelism (similar diversities reached via changes from similar starting points), convergence (similar diversities reached from different starting points), and divergence in shaping the present-day latitudinal diversity gradients of marine bivalves along the two North American coasts. Although both faunas show the expected overall poleward decline in species richness, the trends differ between the coasts, and the discrepancies are not explained simply by present-day temperature differences. Instead, the fossil record indicates that both coasts have declined in overall diversity over the past 3 My, but the western Atlantic fauna suffered more severe Pliocene−Pleistocene extinction than did the eastern Pacific. Tropical western Atlantic diversity remains lower than the eastern Pacific, but warm temperate western Atlantic diversity recovered to exceed that of the temperate eastern Pacific, either through immigration or in situ origination. At the clade level, bivalve families shared by the two coasts followed a variety of paths toward today’s diversities. The drivers of these lineage-level differences remain unclear, but species with broad geographic ranges during the Pliocene were more likely than geographically restricted species to persist in the temperate zone, suggesting that past differences in geographic range sizes among clades may underlie between-coast contrasts. More detailed comparative work on regional extinction intensities and selectivities, and subsequent recoveries (by in situ speciation or immigration), is needed to better understand present-day diversity patterns and model future changes. PMID:25901312

  8. Convergence, divergence, and parallelism in marine biodiversity trends: Integrating present-day and fossil data.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shan; Roy, Kaustuv; Valentine, James W; Jablonski, David

    2015-04-21

    Paleontological data provide essential insights into the processes shaping the spatial distribution of present-day biodiversity. Here, we combine biogeographic data with the fossil record to investigate the roles of parallelism (similar diversities reached via changes from similar starting points), convergence (similar diversities reached from different starting points), and divergence in shaping the present-day latitudinal diversity gradients of marine bivalves along the two North American coasts. Although both faunas show the expected overall poleward decline in species richness, the trends differ between the coasts, and the discrepancies are not explained simply by present-day temperature differences. Instead, the fossil record indicates that both coasts have declined in overall diversity over the past 3 My, but the western Atlantic fauna suffered more severe Pliocene-Pleistocene extinction than did the eastern Pacific. Tropical western Atlantic diversity remains lower than the eastern Pacific, but warm temperate western Atlantic diversity recovered to exceed that of the temperate eastern Pacific, either through immigration or in situ origination. At the clade level, bivalve families shared by the two coasts followed a variety of paths toward today's diversities. The drivers of these lineage-level differences remain unclear, but species with broad geographic ranges during the Pliocene were more likely than geographically restricted species to persist in the temperate zone, suggesting that past differences in geographic range sizes among clades may underlie between-coast contrasts. More detailed comparative work on regional extinction intensities and selectivities, and subsequent recoveries (by in situ speciation or immigration), is needed to better understand present-day diversity patterns and model future changes. PMID:25901312

  9. Convergence, divergence, and parallelism in marine biodiversity trends: Integrating present-day and fossil data.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shan; Roy, Kaustuv; Valentine, James W; Jablonski, David

    2015-04-21

    Paleontological data provide essential insights into the processes shaping the spatial distribution of present-day biodiversity. Here, we combine biogeographic data with the fossil record to investigate the roles of parallelism (similar diversities reached via changes from similar starting points), convergence (similar diversities reached from different starting points), and divergence in shaping the present-day latitudinal diversity gradients of marine bivalves along the two North American coasts. Although both faunas show the expected overall poleward decline in species richness, the trends differ between the coasts, and the discrepancies are not explained simply by present-day temperature differences. Instead, the fossil record indicates that both coasts have declined in overall diversity over the past 3 My, but the western Atlantic fauna suffered more severe Pliocene-Pleistocene extinction than did the eastern Pacific. Tropical western Atlantic diversity remains lower than the eastern Pacific, but warm temperate western Atlantic diversity recovered to exceed that of the temperate eastern Pacific, either through immigration or in situ origination. At the clade level, bivalve families shared by the two coasts followed a variety of paths toward today's diversities. The drivers of these lineage-level differences remain unclear, but species with broad geographic ranges during the Pliocene were more likely than geographically restricted species to persist in the temperate zone, suggesting that past differences in geographic range sizes among clades may underlie between-coast contrasts. More detailed comparative work on regional extinction intensities and selectivities, and subsequent recoveries (by in situ speciation or immigration), is needed to better understand present-day diversity patterns and model future changes.

  10. Recreational SCUBA divers' willingness to pay for marine biodiversity in Barbados.

    PubMed

    Schuhmann, Peter W; Casey, James F; Horrocks, Julia A; Oxenford, Hazel A

    2013-05-30

    The use of natural resources and the services they provide often do not have an explicit price and are therefore undervalued in decision-making, leading to environmental degradation. To 'monetize' the benefits from these services requires the use of non-market valuation techniques. Using a stated preference survey of recreational divers in Barbados conducted between 2007 and 2009, the economic value of marine biodiversity to recreational SCUBA divers in Barbados was estimated. In addition to a variety of demographic variables, divers were asked about their level of experience, expenditures related to travel and diving, and encounters with fish and sea turtles. Divers then completed a choice experiment, selecting between alternative dives with varying characteristics including price, crowding, fish diversity, encounters with sea turtles, and coral cover. Results indicate that divers in Barbados have a clear appreciation of reef quality variables. Willingness to pay for good coral cover, fish diversity and presence of sea turtles is significantly higher than prices paid for dives. In general, divers valued reef attributes similarly, although their appreciation of low density of divers at a site and high coral cover varied with prior diving experience. The results of this study demonstrate the economic value generated in Barbados by the recreational SCUBA diving industry and highlight the potential for substantial additional economic contributions with improvements to the quality of a variety of reef attributes. These results could inform management decisions regarding reef use and sea turtle conservation, and could aid in the development of informed 'win-win' policies aimed at maximizing returns from diving while reducing negative impacts often associated with tourism activities.

  11. Convergence, divergence, and parallelism in marine biodiversity trends: Integrating present-day and fossil data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Shan; Roy, Kaustuv; Valentine, James W.; Jablonski, David

    2015-04-01

    Paleontological data provide essential insights into the processes shaping the spatial distribution of present-day biodiversity. Here, we combine biogeographic data with the fossil record to investigate the roles of parallelism (similar diversities reached via changes from similar starting points), convergence (similar diversities reached from different starting points), and divergence in shaping the present-day latitudinal diversity gradients of marine bivalves along the two North American coasts. Although both faunas show the expected overall poleward decline in species richness, the trends differ between the coasts, and the discrepancies are not explained simply by present-day temperature differences. Instead, the fossil record indicates that both coasts have declined in overall diversity over the past 3 My, but the western Atlantic fauna suffered more severe Pliocene-Pleistocene extinction than did the eastern Pacific. Tropical western Atlantic diversity remains lower than the eastern Pacific, but warm temperate western Atlantic diversity recovered to exceed that of the temperate eastern Pacific, either through immigration or in situ origination. At the clade level, bivalve families shared by the two coasts followed a variety of paths toward today's diversities. The drivers of these lineage-level differences remain unclear, but species with broad geographic ranges during the Pliocene were more likely than geographically restricted species to persist in the temperate zone, suggesting that past differences in geographic range sizes among clades may underlie between-coast contrasts. More detailed comparative work on regional extinction intensities and selectivities, and subsequent recoveries (by in situ speciation or immigration), is needed to better understand present-day diversity patterns and model future changes.

  12. Highly Diverse, Poorly Studied and Uniquely Threatened by Climate Change: An Assessment of Marine Biodiversity on South Georgia's Continental Shelf

    PubMed Central

    Hogg, Oliver T.; Barnes, David K. A.; Griffiths, Huw J.

    2011-01-01

    We attempt to quantify how significant the polar archipelago of South Georgia is as a source of regional and global marine biodiversity. We evaluate numbers of rare, endemic and range-edge species and how the faunal structure of South Georgia may respond to some of the fastest warming waters on the planet. Biodiversity data was collated from a comprehensive review of reports, papers and databases, collectively representing over 125 years of polar exploration. Classification of each specimen was recorded to species level and fully geo-referenced by depth, latitude and longitude. This information was integrated with physical data layers (e.g. temperature, salinity and flow) providing a visualisation of South Georgia's biogeography across spatial, temporal and taxonomic scales, placing it in the wider context of the Southern Hemisphere. This study marks the first attempt to map the biogeography of an archipelago south of the Polar Front. Through it we identify the South Georgian shelf as the most speciose region of the Southern Ocean recorded to date. Marine biodiversity was recorded as rich across taxonomic levels with 17,732 records yielding 1,445 species from 436 families, 51 classes and 22 phyla. Most species recorded were rare, with 35% recorded only once and 86% recorded <10 times. Its marine fauna is marked by the cumulative dominance of endemic and range-edge species, potentially at their thermal tolerance limits. Consequently, our data suggests the ecological implications of environmental change to the South Georgian marine ecosystem could be severe. If sea temperatures continue to rise, we suggest that changes will include depth profile shifts of some fauna towards cooler Antarctic Winter Water (90–150 m), the loss of some range-edge species from regional waters, and the wholesale extinction at a global scale of some of South Georgia's endemic species. PMID:21647236

  13. The challenge of ecophysiological biodiversity for biotechnological applications of marine microalgae.

    PubMed

    Barra, Lucia; Chandrasekaran, Raghu; Corato, Federico; Brunet, Christophe

    2014-03-24

    In this review, we aim to explore the potential of microalgal biodiversity and ecology for biotechnological use. A deeper exploration of the biodiversity richness and ecophysiological properties of microalgae is crucial for enhancing their use for applicative purposes. After describing the actual biotechnological use of microalgae, we consider the multiple faces of taxonomical, morphological, functional and ecophysiological biodiversity of these organisms, and investigate how these properties could better serve the biotechnological field. Lastly, we propose new approaches to enhancing microalgal growth, photosynthesis, and synthesis of valuable products used in biotechnological fields, mainly focusing on culture conditions, especially light manipulations and genetic modifications.

  14. The Challenge of Ecophysiological Biodiversity for Biotechnological Applications of Marine Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    Barra, Lucia; Chandrasekaran, Raghu; Corato, Federico; Brunet, Christophe

    2014-01-01

    In this review, we aim to explore the potential of microalgal biodiversity and ecology for biotechnological use. A deeper exploration of the biodiversity richness and ecophysiological properties of microalgae is crucial for enhancing their use for applicative purposes. After describing the actual biotechnological use of microalgae, we consider the multiple faces of taxonomical, morphological, functional and ecophysiological biodiversity of these organisms, and investigate how these properties could better serve the biotechnological field. Lastly, we propose new approaches to enhancing microalgal growth, photosynthesis, and synthesis of valuable products used in biotechnological fields, mainly focusing on culture conditions, especially light manipulations and genetic modifications. PMID:24663117

  15. Evolutionary dynamics in the southwest Indian ocean marine biodiversity hotspot: a perspective from the rocky shore gastropod genus Nerita.

    PubMed

    Postaire, Bautisse; Bruggemann, J Henrich; Magalon, Hélène; Faure, Baptiste

    2014-01-01

    The Southwest Indian Ocean (SWIO) is a striking marine biodiversity hotspot. Coral reefs in this region host a high proportion of endemics compared to total species richness and they are particularly threatened by human activities. The island archipelagos with their diverse marine habitats constitute a natural laboratory for studying diversification processes. Rocky shores in the SWIO region have remained understudied. This habitat presents a high diversity of molluscs, in particular gastropods. To explore the role of climatic and geological factors in lineage diversification within the genus Nerita, we constructed a new phylogeny with an associated chronogram from two mitochondrial genes [cytochrome oxidase sub-unit 1 and 16S rRNA], combining previously published and new data from eight species sampled throughout the region. All species from the SWIO originated less than 20 Ma ago, their closest extant relatives living in the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA). Furthermore, the SWIO clades within species with Indo-Pacific distribution ranges are quite recent, less than 5 Ma. These results suggest that the regional diversification of Nerita is closely linked to tectonic events in the SWIO region. The Reunion mantle plume head reached Earth's surface 67 Ma and has been stable and active since then, generating island archipelagos, some of which are partly below sea level today. Since the Miocene, sea-level fluctuations have intermittently created new rocky shore habitats. These represent ephemeral stepping-stones, which have likely facilitated repeated colonization by intertidal gastropods, like Nerita populations from the IAA, leading to allopatric speciation. This highlights the importance of taking into account past climatic and geological factors when studying diversification of highly dispersive tropical marine species. It also underlines the unique history of the marine biodiversity of the SWIO region. PMID:24736639

  16. Culturing and environmental DNA sequencing uncover hidden kinetoplastid biodiversity and a major marine clade within ancestrally freshwater Neobodo designis.

    PubMed

    von der Heyden, Sophie; Cavalier-Smith, Thomas

    2005-11-01

    Bodonid flagellates (class Kinetoplastea) are abundant, free-living protozoa in freshwater, soil and marine habitats, with undersampled global biodiversity. To investigate overall bodonid diversity, kinetoplastid-specific PCR primers were used to amplify and sequence 18S rRNA genes from DNA extracted from 16 diverse environmental samples; of 39 different kinetoplastid sequences, 35 belong to the subclass Metakinetoplastina, where most group with the genus Neobodo or the species Bodo saltans, whilst four group with the subclass Prokinetoplastina (Ichthyobodo). To study divergence between freshwater and marine members of the genus Neobodo, 26 new Neobodo designis strains were cultured and their 18S rRNA genes were sequenced. It is shown that the morphospecies N. designis is a remarkably ancient species complex with a major marine clade nested among older freshwater clades, suggesting that these lineages were constrained physiologically from moving between these environments for most of their long history. Other major bodonid clades show less-deep separation between marine and freshwater strains, but have extensive genetic diversity within all lineages and an apparently biogeographically distinct distribution of B. saltans subclades. Clade-specific 18S rRNA gene primers were used for two N. designis subclades to test their global distribution and genetic diversity. The non-overlap between environmental DNA sequences and those from cultures suggests that there are hundreds, possibly thousands, of different rRNA gene sequences of free-living bodonids globally.

  17. Marine environmental contamination: public awareness, concern and perceived effectiveness in five European countries.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Silke; Sioen, Isabelle; De Henauw, Stefaan; Rosseel, Yves; Calis, Tanja; Tediosi, Alice; Nadal, Martí; Marques, António; Verbeke, Wim

    2015-11-01

    Given the potential of Perceived Consumer Effectiveness (PCE) in shaping pro-environmental behavior, the relationships between PCE, awareness of causes of contaminants in the marine environment, and concern about marine environmental contamination were investigated using Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). PCE is the belief that an individual has in being able to make a difference when acting alone. A web-based survey was performed in one western European country (Belgium), one northern European country (Ireland) and three southern European countries (Italy, Portugal and Spain), resulting in a total sample size of 2824 participants. The analyses confirm that European citizens are concerned about marine environmental problems. Participants from the southern countries reported the highest concern. In addition, the study participants did not have a strong belief in themselves in being capable of making a difference in tackling marine environmental problems. However, a higher awareness, which was associated with a higher degree of concern, enhanced the belief that an individual can make a difference in tackling marine environmental problems, though only when a concrete action was proposed. Consequently, information campaigns focusing on pro-environmental behavior are recommended to raise public awareness about marine environmental problems and at the same time explicitly refer to concrete possible actions. The findings indicate that when only awareness and concern are raised without mentioning a concrete action, PCE might even decrease and render the communication effort ineffective.

  18. Historical macrobenthic community assemblages in the Avilés Canyon, N Iberian Shelf: Baseline biodiversity information for a marine protected area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louzao, Maite; Anadón, Nuria; Arrontes, Julio; Álvarez-Claudio, Consuelo; Fuente, Dulce María; Ocharan, Francisco; Anadón, Araceli; Acuña, José Luis

    2010-02-01

    Deep-sea ecosystems are highly diverse, and European countries seek to protect these environments by identifying conservation targets. One of these is the Avilés Canyon, southern Bay of Biscay, NE Atlantic, Spain. We present the first analysis of historical benthic communities (1987-1988) of this canyon ecosystem, which is a valuable source of biodiversity baseline information. We found 810 taxa divided in five main macrobenthic assemblages, showing a highly diverse benthic community. Bathymetry was the major structuring agent of benthic community, separating shallow (assemblages I and II, 31 to 307 m depth) from deep stations (assemblages III, IV and V, 198 to 1400 m depth). Especially diverse was assemblage IV, located at the easternmost part of the continental slope (378-1100 m depth) where we found reef-forming corals Lophelia pertusa and Madrepora oculata. These and other communities (sea-pens [Order Pennatulacea, Phylum Cnidaria] and burrowing macrofauna) represent key habitats in NE Atlantic continental slopes, which are currently threatened. The present dataset has produced the most comprehensive assessment of diversity in this area to date, focusing on the taxonomic groups which may best reflect the health of the marine ecosystem and supporting previous studies which indicate that the continental slope of the southern Bay of Biscay hosts key benthic habitats.

  19. Seventy-one important questions for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Parsons, E C M; Favaro, Brett; Aguirre, A Alonso; Bauer, Amy L; Blight, Louise K; Cigliano, John A; Coleman, Melinda A; Côté, Isabelle M; Draheim, Megan; Fletcher, Stephen; Foley, Melissa M; Jefferson, Rebecca; Jones, Miranda C; Kelaher, Brendan P; Lundquist, Carolyn J; McCarthy, Julie-Beth; Nelson, Anne; Patterson, Katheryn; Walsh, Leslie; Wright, Andrew J; Sutherland, William J

    2014-10-01

    The ocean provides food, economic activity, and cultural value for a large proportion of humanity. Our knowledge of marine ecosystems lags behind that of terrestrial ecosystems, limiting effective protection of marine resources. We describe the outcome of 2 workshops in 2011 and 2012 to establish a list of important questions, which, if answered, would substantially improve our ability to conserve and manage the world's marine resources. Participants included individuals from academia, government, and nongovernment organizations with broad experience across disciplines, marine ecosystems, and countries that vary in levels of development. Contributors from the fields of science, conservation, industry, and government submitted questions to our workshops, which we distilled into a list of priority research questions. Through this process, we identified 71 key questions. We grouped these into 8 subject categories, each pertaining to a broad component of marine conservation: fisheries, climate change, other anthropogenic threats, ecosystems, marine citizenship, policy, societal and cultural considerations, and scientific enterprise. Our questions address many issues that are specific to marine conservation, and will serve as a road map to funders and researchers to develop programs that can greatly benefit marine conservation.

  20. Seventy-one important questions for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Parsons, E C M; Favaro, Brett; Aguirre, A Alonso; Bauer, Amy L; Blight, Louise K; Cigliano, John A; Coleman, Melinda A; Côté, Isabelle M; Draheim, Megan; Fletcher, Stephen; Foley, Melissa M; Jefferson, Rebecca; Jones, Miranda C; Kelaher, Brendan P; Lundquist, Carolyn J; McCarthy, Julie-Beth; Nelson, Anne; Patterson, Katheryn; Walsh, Leslie; Wright, Andrew J; Sutherland, William J

    2014-10-01

    The ocean provides food, economic activity, and cultural value for a large proportion of humanity. Our knowledge of marine ecosystems lags behind that of terrestrial ecosystems, limiting effective protection of marine resources. We describe the outcome of 2 workshops in 2011 and 2012 to establish a list of important questions, which, if answered, would substantially improve our ability to conserve and manage the world's marine resources. Participants included individuals from academia, government, and nongovernment organizations with broad experience across disciplines, marine ecosystems, and countries that vary in levels of development. Contributors from the fields of science, conservation, industry, and government submitted questions to our workshops, which we distilled into a list of priority research questions. Through this process, we identified 71 key questions. We grouped these into 8 subject categories, each pertaining to a broad component of marine conservation: fisheries, climate change, other anthropogenic threats, ecosystems, marine citizenship, policy, societal and cultural considerations, and scientific enterprise. Our questions address many issues that are specific to marine conservation, and will serve as a road map to funders and researchers to develop programs that can greatly benefit marine conservation. PMID:24779474

  1. Implementing the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive: Scientific challenges and opportunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newton, Alice; Borja, Angel; Solidoro, Cosimo; Grégoire, Marilaure

    2015-10-01

    The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD; EC, 2008) is an ambitious European policy instrument that aims to achieve Good Environmental Status (GES) in the 5,720,000 km2 of European seas by 2020, using an Ecosystem Approach. GES is to be assessed using 11 descriptors and up to 56 indicators (European Commission, 2010), and the goal is for clean, healthy and productive seas that are the basis for marine-based development, known as Blue-Growth. The MSFD is one of many policy instruments, such as the Water Framework Directive, the Common Fisheries Policy and the Habitats Directive that, together, should result in "Healthy Oceans and Productive Ecosystems - HOPE". Researchers working together with stakeholders such as the Member States environmental agencies, the European Environmental Agency, and the Regional Sea Conventions, are to provide the scientific knowledge basis for the implementation of the MSFD. This represents both a fascinating challenge and a stimulating opportunity.

  2. Assessing Fishing and Marine Biodiversity Changes Using Fishers' Perceptions: The Spanish Mediterranean and Gulf of Cadiz Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Coll, Marta; Carreras, Marta; Ciércoles, Cristina; Cornax, Maria-José; Gorelli, Giulia; Morote, Elvira; Sáez, Raquel

    2014-01-01

    Background The expansion of fishing activities has intensively transformed marine ecosystems worldwide. However, available time series do not frequently cover historical periods. Methodology Fishers' perceptions were used to complement data and characterise changes in fishing activity and exploited ecosystems in the Spanish Mediterranean Sea and Gulf of Cadiz. Fishers' interviews were conducted in 27 fishing harbours of the area, and included 64 fishers from ages between 20 to >70 years old to capture the experiences and memories of various generations. Results are discussed in comparison with available independent information using stock assessments and international convention lists. Principal Findings According to fishers, fishing activity substantially evolved in the area with time, expanding towards deeper grounds and towards areas more distant from the coast. The maximum amount of catch ever caught and the weight of the largest species ever captured inversely declined with time. Fishers (70%) cited specific fishing grounds where depletion occurred. They documented ecological changes of marine biodiversity during the last half of the century: 94% reported the decline of commercially important fish and invertebrates and 61% listed species that could have been extirpated, with frequent mentions to cartilaginous fish. Declines and extirpations were in line with available quantitative evaluations from stock assessments and international conventions, and were likely linked to fishing impacts. Conversely, half of interviewed fishers claimed that several species had proliferated, such as cephalopods, jellyfish, and small-sized fish. These changes were likely related to trophic cascades due to fishing and due to climate change effects. The species composition of depletions, local extinctions and proliferations showed differences by region suggesting that regional dynamics are important when analysing biodiversity changes. Conclusions/Significance Using fishers

  3. The European Marine Observing Network and the development of an Integrated European Ocean Observing System. An EuroGOOS perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandez, Vicente; Gorringe, Patrick; Nolan, Glenn

    2016-04-01

    The ocean benefits many sectors of society, being the biggest reservoir of heat, water, carbon and oxygen and playing a fundamental role regulating the earth's climate. We rely on the oceans for food, transport, energy and recreation. Therefore, a sustained marine observation network is crucial to further our understanding of the oceanic environment and to supply scientific data to meet society's need. Marine data and observations in Europe, collected primarily by state governmental agencies, is offered via five Regional Operational Oceanographic Systems (ROOS) within the context of EuroGOOS (http://www.eurogos.eu), an International Non-Profit Association of national governmental agencies and research organizations (40 members from 19 member states) committed to European-scale operational oceanography within the context of the Intergovernmental Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS). Strong cooperation within these regions, enabling the involvement of additional partners and countries, forms the basis of EuroGOOS work. Ocean data collected from different type of sensors (e.g. moored buoys, tide gauges, Ferrybox systems, High Frequency radars, gliders and profiling floats) is accessible to scientist and other end users through data portals and initiatives such as the European Marine Observations and Data Network (EMODnet) (www.emodnet.eu) and the Copernicus Marine Service Copernicus (www.copernicus.eu). Although a relatively mature European ocean observing capability already exists and its well-coordinated at European level, some gaps have been identified, for example the demand for ecosystem products and services, or the case that biogeochemical observations are still relatively sparse particularly in coastal and shelf seas. Assessing gaps based on the capacity of the observing system to answer key societal challenges e.g. site suitability for aquaculture and ocean energy, oil spill response and contextual oceanographic products for fisheries and ecosystems is still

  4. Accommodating Dynamic Oceanographic Processes and Pelagic Biodiversity in Marine Conservation Planning

    PubMed Central

    Grantham, Hedley S.; Game, Edward T.; Lombard, Amanda T.; Hobday, Alistair J.; Richardson, Anthony J.; Beckley, Lynnath E.; Pressey, Robert L.; Huggett, Jenny A.; Coetzee, Janet C.; van der Lingen, Carl D.; Petersen, Samantha L.; Merkle, Dagmar; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2011-01-01

    Pelagic ecosystems support a significant and vital component of the ocean's productivity and biodiversity. They are also heavily exploited and, as a result, are the focus of numerous spatial planning initiatives. Over the past decade, there has been increasing enthusiasm for protected areas as a tool for pelagic conservation, however, few have been implemented. Here we demonstrate an approach to plan protected areas that address the physical and biological dynamics typical of the pelagic realm. Specifically, we provide an example of an approach to planning protected areas that integrates pelagic and benthic conservation in the southern Benguela and Agulhas Bank ecosystems off South Africa. Our aim was to represent species of importance to fisheries and species of conservation concern within protected areas. In addition to representation, we ensured that protected areas were designed to consider pelagic dynamics, characterized from time-series data on key oceanographic processes, together with data on the abundance of small pelagic fishes. We found that, to have the highest likelihood of reaching conservation targets, protected area selection should be based on time-specific data rather than data averaged across time. More generally, we argue that innovative methods are needed to conserve ephemeral and dynamic pelagic biodiversity. PMID:21311757

  5. DNA Barcoding Marine Biodiversity: Steps from Mere Cataloguing to Giving Reasons for Biological Differences.

    PubMed

    Nikinmaa, Mikko; Götting, Miriam

    2016-01-01

    DNA barcoding has become a useful tool in many contexts and has opened up a completely new avenue for taxonomy. DNA barcoding has its widest application in biodiversity and ecological research to detect and describe diversity whenever morphological discrimination is difficult or impossible (e.g., in the case of species lacking diagnostic characters, early life stages, or cryptic species). In this chapter, we outline the utility of including physiological parameters as part of species description in publicly available databases that catalog taxonomic information resulting from barcoding projects. Cryptic species or different life stages of a species often differ in their physiological traits. Thus, if physiological aspects were included in species definitions, the presently cryptic species could be distinguished. We furthermore give suggestions for physiological information that should be included in a species description and describe potential applications of DNA barcoding for research with physiological components. PMID:27460377

  6. Seventy-One Important Questions for the Conservation of Marine Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    PARSONS, E C M; FAVARO, BRETT; AGUIRRE, A ALONSO; BAUER, AMY L; BLIGHT, LOUISE K; CIGLIANO, JOHN A; COLEMAN, MELINDA A; CÔTÉ, ISABELLE M; DRAHEIM, MEGAN; FLETCHER, STEPHEN; FOLEY, MELISSA M; JEFFERSON, REBECCA; JONES, MIRANDA C; KELAHER, BRENDAN P; LUNDQUIST, CAROLYN J; MCCARTHY, JULIE-BETH; NELSON, ANNE; PATTERSON, KATHERYN; WALSH, LESLIE; WRIGHT, ANDREW J; SUTHERLAND, WILLIAM J

    2014-01-01

    The ocean provides food, economic activity, and cultural value for a large proportion of humanity. Our knowledge of marine ecosystems lags behind that of terrestrial ecosystems, limiting effective protection of marine resources. We describe the outcome of 2 workshops in 2011 and 2012 to establish a list of important questions, which, if answered, would substantially improve our ability to conserve and manage the world’s marine resources. Participants included individuals from academia, government, and nongovernment organizations with broad experience across disciplines, marine ecosystems, and countries that vary in levels of development. Contributors from the fields of science, conservation, industry, and government submitted questions to our workshops, which we distilled into a list of priority research questions. Through this process, we identified 71 key questions. We grouped these into 8 subject categories, each pertaining to a broad component of marine conservation: fisheries, climate change, other anthropogenic threats, ecosystems, marine citizenship, policy, societal and cultural considerations, and scientific enterprise. Our questions address many issues that are specific to marine conservation, and will serve as a road map to funders and researchers to develop programs that can greatly benefit marine conservation. Setenta y Un Preguntas Importantes para la Conservación de la Biodiversidad Marina Resumen Los océanos proporcionan alimento, actividad económica y valor cultural para una gran porción de la humanidad. Nuestro conocimiento de los ecosistemas marinos está atrasado con respecto al que tenemos de los ecosistemas terrestres, lo que limita la protección efectiva de los recursos naturales. Describimos el resultado de dos talleres en 2011 y 2012 para establecer una lista de preguntas importantes, las cuales al ser respondidas, mejorarían sustancialmente nuestra habilidad de conservar y manejar los recursos marinos del mundo. Entre los

  7. Reductive dechlorination of tetrachloroethene in marine sediments: Biodiversity and dehalorespiring capabilities of the indigenous microbes.

    PubMed

    Matturro, B; Presta, E; Rossetti, S

    2016-03-01

    Chlorinated compounds pose environmental concerns due to their toxicity and wide distribution in several matrices. Microorganisms specialized in leading anaerobic reductive dechlorination (RD) processes, including Dehalococcoides mccartyi (Dhc), are able to reduce chlorinated compounds to harmless products or to less toxic forms. Here we report the first detailed study dealing with the RD potential of heavy polluted marine sediment by evaluating the biodegradation kinetics together with the composition, dynamics and activity of indigenous microbial population. A microcosm study was conducted under strictly anaerobic conditions on marine sediment collected near the marine coast of Sarno river mouth, one of the most polluted river in Europe. Tetrachloroethene (PCE), used as model pollutant, was completely converted to ethene within 150 days at reductive dechlorination rate equal to 0.016 meq L(-1) d(-1). Consecutive spikes of PCE allowed increasing the degradation kinetics up to 0.1 meq L(-1)d(-1) within 20 days. Strictly anaerobiosis and repeated spikes of PCE stimulated the growth of indigenous Dhc cells (growth yield of ~7.0 E + 07 Dhc cells per μM Cl(-1) released). Dhc strains carrying the reductive dehalogenase genes tceA and vcrA were detected in the original marine sediment and their number increased during the treatment as demonstrated by the high level of tceA expression at the end of the microcosm study (2.41 E + 05 tceA gene transcripts g(-1)). Notably, the structure of the microbial communities was fully described by Catalysed Reporter Deposition Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization (CARD-FISH) as wells as the dynamics of the dechlorinating bacteria during the microcosms operation. Interestingly, a direct role of Dhc cells was ascertained suggesting the existence of strains adapted at salinity conditions. Additionally, non-Dhc Chloroflexi were retrieved in the original sediment and were kept stable over time suggesting their likely flanking role of the RD

  8. Marine biodiversity in South Africa: an evaluation of current states of knowledge.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Charles L; Robinson, Tamara B; Lange, Louise; Mead, Angela

    2010-01-01

    Continental South Africa has a coastline of some 3,650 km and an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of just over 1 million km(2). Waters in the EEZ extend to a depth of 5,700 m, with more than 65% deeper than 2,000 m. Despite its status as a developing nation, South Africa has a relatively strong history of marine taxonomic research and maintains comprehensive and well-curated museum collections totaling over 291,000 records. Over 3 million locality records from more than 23,000 species have been lodged in the regional AfrOBIS (African Ocean Biogeographic Information System) data center (which stores data from a wider African region). A large number of regional guides to the marine fauna and flora are also available and are listed. The currently recorded marine biota of South Africa numbers at least 12,914 species, although many taxa, particularly those of small body size, remain poorly documented. The coastal zone is relatively well sampled with some 2,500 samples of benthic invertebrate communities have been taken by grab, dredge, or trawl. Almost none of these samples, however, were collected after 1980, and over 99% of existing samples are from depths shallower than 1,000 m--indeed 83% are from less than 100 m. The abyssal zone thus remains almost completely unexplored. South Africa has a fairly large industrial fishing industry, of which the largest fisheries are the pelagic (pilchard and anchovy) and demersal (hake) sectors, both focused on the west and south coasts. The east coast has fewer, smaller commercial fisheries, but a high coastal population density, resulting in intense exploitation of inshore resources by recreational and subsistence fishers, and this has resulted in the overexploitation of many coastal fish and invertebrate stocks. South Africa has a small aquaculture industry rearing mussels, oysters, prawns, and abalone-the latter two in land-based facilities. Compared with many other developing countries, South Africa has a well-conserved coastline

  9. Marine Biodiversity in South Africa: An Evaluation of Current States of Knowledge

    PubMed Central

    Griffiths, Charles L.; Robinson, Tamara B.; Lange, Louise; Mead, Angela

    2010-01-01

    Continental South Africa has a coastline of some 3,650 km and an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of just over 1 million km2. Waters in the EEZ extend to a depth of 5,700 m, with more than 65% deeper than 2,000 m. Despite its status as a developing nation, South Africa has a relatively strong history of marine taxonomic research and maintains comprehensive and well-curated museum collections totaling over 291,000 records. Over 3 million locality records from more than 23,000 species have been lodged in the regional AfrOBIS (African Ocean Biogeographic Information System) data center (which stores data from a wider African region). A large number of regional guides to the marine fauna and flora are also available and are listed. The currently recorded marine biota of South Africa numbers at least 12,914 species, although many taxa, particularly those of small body size, remain poorly documented. The coastal zone is relatively well sampled with some 2,500 samples of benthic invertebrate communities have been taken by grab, dredge, or trawl. Almost none of these samples, however, were collected after 1980, and over 99% of existing samples are from depths shallower than 1,000 m—indeed 83% are from less than 100 m. The abyssal zone thus remains almost completely unexplored. South Africa has a fairly large industrial fishing industry, of which the largest fisheries are the pelagic (pilchard and anchovy) and demersal (hake) sectors, both focused on the west and south coasts. The east coast has fewer, smaller commercial fisheries, but a high coastal population density, resulting in intense exploitation of inshore resources by recreational and subsistence fishers, and this has resulted in the overexploitation of many coastal fish and invertebrate stocks. South Africa has a small aquaculture industry rearing mussels, oysters, prawns, and abalone—the latter two in land-based facilities. Compared with many other developing countries, South Africa has a well

  10. Marine biodiversity in South Africa: an evaluation of current states of knowledge.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Charles L; Robinson, Tamara B; Lange, Louise; Mead, Angela

    2010-08-02

    Continental South Africa has a coastline of some 3,650 km and an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of just over 1 million km(2). Waters in the EEZ extend to a depth of 5,700 m, with more than 65% deeper than 2,000 m. Despite its status as a developing nation, South Africa has a relatively strong history of marine taxonomic research and maintains comprehensive and well-curated museum collections totaling over 291,000 records. Over 3 million locality records from more than 23,000 species have been lodged in the regional AfrOBIS (African Ocean Biogeographic Information System) data center (which stores data from a wider African region). A large number of regional guides to the marine fauna and flora are also available and are listed. The currently recorded marine biota of South Africa numbers at least 12,914 species, although many taxa, particularly those of small body size, remain poorly documented. The coastal zone is relatively well sampled with some 2,500 samples of benthic invertebrate communities have been taken by grab, dredge, or trawl. Almost none of these samples, however, were collected after 1980, and over 99% of existing samples are from depths shallower than 1,000 m--indeed 83% are from less than 100 m. The abyssal zone thus remains almost completely unexplored. South Africa has a fairly large industrial fishing industry, of which the largest fisheries are the pelagic (pilchard and anchovy) and demersal (hake) sectors, both focused on the west and south coasts. The east coast has fewer, smaller commercial fisheries, but a high coastal population density, resulting in intense exploitation of inshore resources by recreational and subsistence fishers, and this has resulted in the overexploitation of many coastal fish and invertebrate stocks. South Africa has a small aquaculture industry rearing mussels, oysters, prawns, and abalone-the latter two in land-based facilities. Compared with many other developing countries, South Africa has a well-conserved coastline

  11. SeaDataNet Pan-European infrastructure for Ocean & Marine Data Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manzella, G. M.; Maillard, C.; Maudire, G.; Schaap, D.; Rickards, L.; Nast, F.; Balopoulos, E.; Mikhailov, N.; Vladymyrov, V.; Pissierssens, P.; Schlitzer, R.; Beckers, J. M.; Barale, V.

    2007-12-01

    SEADATANET is developing a Pan-European data management infrastructure to insure access to a large number of marine environmental data (i.e. temperature, salinity current, sea level, chemical, physical and biological properties), safeguard and long term archiving. Data are derived from many different sensors installed on board of research vessels, satellite and the various platforms of the marine observing system. SeaDataNet allows to have information on real time and archived marine environmental data collected at a pan-european level, through directories on marine environmental data and projects. SeaDataNet allows the access to the most comprehensive multidisciplinary sets of marine in-situ and remote sensing data, from about 40 laboratories, through user friendly tools. The data selection and access is operated through the Common Data Index (CDI), XML files compliant with ISO standards and unified dictionaries. Technical Developments carried out by SeaDataNet includes: A library of Standards - Meta-data standards, compliant with ISO 19115, for communication and interoperability between the data platforms. Software of interoperable on line system - Interconnection of distributed data centres by interfacing adapted communication technology tools. Off-Line Data Management software - software representing the minimum equipment of all the data centres is developed by AWI "Ocean Data View (ODV)". Training, Education and Capacity Building - Training 'on the job' is carried out by IOC-Unesco in Ostende. SeaDataNet Virtual Educational Centre internet portal provides basic tools for informal education

  12. A critical assessment of marine aquarist biodiversity data and commercial aquaculture: identifying gaps in culture initiatives to inform local fisheries managers.

    PubMed

    Murray, Joanna M; Watson, Gordon J

    2014-01-01

    It is widely accepted that if well managed, the marine aquarium trade could provide socio-economic stability to local communities while incentivising the maintenance of coral reefs. However, the trade has also been implicated as having potentially widespread environmental impacts that has in part driven developments in aquaculture to relieve wild collection pressures. This study investigates the biodiversity in hobbyist aquaria (using an online survey) and those species currently available from an aquaculture source (commercial data and hobbyist initiatives) in the context of a traffic light system to highlight gaps in aquaculture effort and identify groups that require fisheries assessments. Two hundred and sixty nine species including clown fish, damsels, dotty backs, angelfish, gobies, sea horses and blennies, have reported breeding successes by hobbyists, a pattern mirrored by the European and US commercial organisations. However, there is a mismatch (high demand and low/non-existent aquaculture) for a number of groups including tangs, starfish, anemones and hermit crabs, which we recommend are priority candidates for local stock assessments. Hobbyist perception towards the concept of a sustainable aquarium trade is also explored with results demonstrating that only 40% of respondents were in agreement with industry and scientists who believe the trade could be an exemplar of a sustainable use of coral reefs. We believe that a more transparent evidence base, including the publication of the species collected and cultured, will go some way to align the concept of a sustainable trade across industry stakeholders and better inform the hobbyist when purchasing their aquaria stock. We conclude by proposing that a certification scheme established with government support is the most effective way to move towards a self-regulating industry. It would prevent industry "greenwashing" from multiple certification schemes, alleviate conservation concerns, and, ultimately

  13. A Critical Assessment of Marine Aquarist Biodiversity Data and Commercial Aquaculture: Identifying Gaps in Culture Initiatives to Inform Local Fisheries Managers

    PubMed Central

    Murray, Joanna M.; Watson, Gordon J.

    2014-01-01

    It is widely accepted that if well managed, the marine aquarium trade could provide socio-economic stability to local communities while incentivising the maintenance of coral reefs. However, the trade has also been implicated as having potentially widespread environmental impacts that has in part driven developments in aquaculture to relieve wild collection pressures. This study investigates the biodiversity in hobbyist aquaria (using an online survey) and those species currently available from an aquaculture source (commercial data and hobbyist initiatives) in the context of a traffic light system to highlight gaps in aquaculture effort and identify groups that require fisheries assessments. Two hundred and sixty nine species including clown fish, damsels, dotty backs, angelfish, gobies, sea horses and blennies, have reported breeding successes by hobbyists, a pattern mirrored by the European and US commercial organisations. However, there is a mismatch (high demand and low/non-existent aquaculture) for a number of groups including tangs, starfish, anemones and hermit crabs, which we recommend are priority candidates for local stock assessments. Hobbyist perception towards the concept of a sustainable aquarium trade is also explored with results demonstrating that only 40% of respondents were in agreement with industry and scientists who believe the trade could be an exemplar of a sustainable use of coral reefs. We believe that a more transparent evidence base, including the publication of the species collected and cultured, will go some way to align the concept of a sustainable trade across industry stakeholders and better inform the hobbyist when purchasing their aquaria stock. We conclude by proposing that a certification scheme established with government support is the most effective way to move towards a self-regulating industry. It would prevent industry “greenwashing” from multiple certification schemes, alleviate conservation concerns, and, ultimately

  14. Unexpected biodiversity of ciliates in marine samples from below the photic zone.

    PubMed

    Grattepanche, Jean-David; Santoferrara, Luciana F; McManus, George B; Katz, Laura A

    2016-08-01

    Marine microbial eukaryotes play critical roles in planktonic food webs and have been described as most diverse in the photic zone where productivity is high. We used high-throughput sequencing (HTS) to analyse the spatial distribution of planktonic ciliate diversity from shallow waters (<30 m depth) to beyond the continental shelf (>800 m depth) along a 163 km transect off the coast of New England, USA. We focus on ciliates in the subclasses Oligotrichia and Choreotrichia (class Spirotrichea), as these taxa are major components of marine food webs. We did not observe the decrease of diversity below the photic zone expected based on productivity and previous analyses. Instead, we saw an increase of diversity with depth. We also observed that the ciliate communities assessed by HTS cluster by depth layer and degree of water column stratification, suggesting that community assembly is driven by environmental factors. Across our samples, abundant OTUs tend to match previously characterized morphospecies while rare OTUs are more often undescribed, consistent with the idea that species in the rare biosphere remain to be characterized by microscopy. Finally, samples taken below the photic zone also reveal the prevalence of two uncharacterized (i.e. lacking sequenced morphospecies) clades - clusters X1 and X2 - that are enriched within the nano-sized fraction (2-10 μm) and are defined by deletions within the region of the SSU-rDNA analysed here. Together, these data reinforce that we still have much to learn about microbial diversity in marine ecosystems, especially in deep-waters that may be a reservoir for rare species and uncharacterized taxa. PMID:27374257

  15. Unexpected biodiversity of ciliates in marine samples from below the photic zone.

    PubMed

    Grattepanche, Jean-David; Santoferrara, Luciana F; McManus, George B; Katz, Laura A

    2016-08-01

    Marine microbial eukaryotes play critical roles in planktonic food webs and have been described as most diverse in the photic zone where productivity is high. We used high-throughput sequencing (HTS) to analyse the spatial distribution of planktonic ciliate diversity from shallow waters (<30 m depth) to beyond the continental shelf (>800 m depth) along a 163 km transect off the coast of New England, USA. We focus on ciliates in the subclasses Oligotrichia and Choreotrichia (class Spirotrichea), as these taxa are major components of marine food webs. We did not observe the decrease of diversity below the photic zone expected based on productivity and previous analyses. Instead, we saw an increase of diversity with depth. We also observed that the ciliate communities assessed by HTS cluster by depth layer and degree of water column stratification, suggesting that community assembly is driven by environmental factors. Across our samples, abundant OTUs tend to match previously characterized morphospecies while rare OTUs are more often undescribed, consistent with the idea that species in the rare biosphere remain to be characterized by microscopy. Finally, samples taken below the photic zone also reveal the prevalence of two uncharacterized (i.e. lacking sequenced morphospecies) clades - clusters X1 and X2 - that are enriched within the nano-sized fraction (2-10 μm) and are defined by deletions within the region of the SSU-rDNA analysed here. Together, these data reinforce that we still have much to learn about microbial diversity in marine ecosystems, especially in deep-waters that may be a reservoir for rare species and uncharacterized taxa.

  16. Connectivity of tropical marine ecosystems--An overview of interdisciplinary research to understand biodiversity and trophic relationships in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McClain-Counts, Jennifer P.; Demopoulos, Amanda W.J.

    2012-01-01

    The Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico contain marine reserves and protected areas that encompass a variety of tropical ecosystems, including coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrass beds. Reserves and protected areas are established for a variety of reasons, such as preserving nursery habitats and biodiversity, or reducing anthropogenic effects associated with pollution and land use. Questions remain regarding the effectiveness of these designated areas in preserving and protecting spatially connected habitats and associated fishes and invertebrates. Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), University of Florida, and Arkansas State University are collaborating on interdisciplinary research in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico to examine the biodiversity and trophic dynamics of fishes and invertebrates residing in connected mangroves, seagrasses, and coral reefs to discern the effectiveness of current marine reserves and protected areas for conserving reef resources.

  17. The Antarctic region as a marine biodiversity hotspot for echinoderms: Diversity and diversification of sea cucumbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mark O'Loughlin, P.; Paulay, Gustav; Davey, Niki; Michonneau, François

    2011-03-01

    The Antarctic region is renowned for its isolated, unusual, diverse, and disharmonic marine fauna. Holothuroids are especially diverse, with 187 species (including 51 that are undescribed) recorded south of the Antarctic Convergence. This represents ˜4% of the documented Antarctic marine biota, and ˜10% of the world's holothuroid diversity. We present evidence that both inter-regional speciation with southern cold-temperate regions and intra-regional diversification has contributed to species richness. The Antarctic fauna is isolated, with few shallow-water Antarctic species known from north of the Convergence, yet several species show recent transgression of this boundary followed by genetic divergence. Interchange at longer time scales is evidenced by the scarcity of endemic genera (10 of 55) and occurrence of all six holothuroid orders within the region. While most Antarctic holothuroid morphospecies have circum-polar distributions, mtDNA sequence data demonstrate substantial geographic differentiation in many of these. Thus, most of the 37 holothuroid species recorded from shelf/slope depths in the Weddell Sea have also been found in collections from Prydz Bay and the Ross Sea. Yet 17 of 28 morphospecies and complexes studied show allopatric differentiation around the continent, on average into three divergent lineages each, suggesting that morphological data fails to reflect the level of differentiation. Interchange and local radiation of colonizers appear to have rapidly built diversity in the Antarctic, despite the potential of cold temperatures (and associated long generation times) to slow the rate of evolution.

  18. Effect of radioactive pollution on the biodiversity of marine benthic ecosystems of the Russian Arctic shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexeev, Denis K.; Galtsova, Valentina V.

    2012-07-01

    This study is the result of many years of research on the ecology of the marine benthos of Russian Arctic seas. We used samples collected at various locations from the Russian continental shelf during 1993-2009 as the basis of our study. Our main aim was to analyze the spatial distribution of taxonomic and quantitative characteristics of the meiobenthos (small bottom-dwelling animals, 0.1-3.0 mm in size). Statistical analysis of the data revealed that the factors determining the spatial distribution of meiobenthic organisms under natural conditions, and conditions impacted upon by human activity, were salinity, water depth, hydrocarbons, heavy metals and radiocaesium volumetric activity. The possible use of the meiobenthos as a tool for environmental impact assessment is proposed and discussed on the level of higher taxa.

  19. The effectiveness of marine reserve systems constructed using different surrogates of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Sutcliffe, P R; Klein, C J; Pitcher, C R; Possingham, H P

    2015-06-01

    Biological sampling in marine systems is often limited, and the cost of acquiring new data is high. We sought to assess whether systematic reserves designed using abiotic domains adequately conserve a comprehensive range of species in a tropical marine inter-reef system. We based our assessment on data from the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. We designed reserve systems aiming to conserve 30% of each species based on 4 abiotic surrogate types (abiotic domains; weighted abiotic domains; pre-defined bioregions; and random selection of areas). We evaluated each surrogate in scenarios with and without cost (cost to fishery) and clumping (size of conservation area) constraints. To measure the efficacy of each reserve system for conservation purposes, we evaluated how well 842 species collected at 1155 sites across the Great Barrier Reef seabed were represented in each reserve system. When reserve design included both cost and clumping constraints, the mean proportion of species reaching the conservation target was 20-27% higher for reserve systems that were biologically informed than reserves designed using unweighted environmental data. All domains performed substantially better than random, except when there were no spatial or economic constraints placed on the system design. Under the scenario with no constraints, the mean proportion of species reaching the conservation target ranged from 98.5% to 99.99% across all surrogate domains, whereas the range was 90-96% across all domains when both cost and clumping were considered. This proportion did not change considerably between scenarios where one constraint was imposed and scenarios where both cost and clumping constraints were considered. We conclude that representative reserve systems can be designed using abiotic domains; however, there are substantial benefits if some biological information is incorporated.

  20. Gene invasion in distant eukaryotic lineages: discovery of mutually exclusive genetic elements reveals marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Monier, Adam; Sudek, Sebastian; Fast, Naomi M; Worden, Alexandra Z

    2013-09-01

    Inteins are rare, translated genetic parasites mainly found in bacteria and archaea, while spliceosomal introns are distinctly eukaryotic features abundant in most nuclear genomes. Using targeted metagenomics, we discovered an intein in an Atlantic population of the photosynthetic eukaryote, Bathycoccus, harbored by the essential spliceosomal protein PRP8 (processing factor 8 protein). Although previously thought exclusive to fungi, we also identified PRP8 inteins in parasitic (Capsaspora) and predatory (Salpingoeca) protists. Most new PRP8 inteins were at novel insertion sites that, surprisingly, were not in the most conserved regions of the gene. Evolutionarily, Dikarya fungal inteins at PRP8 insertion site a appeared more related to the Bathycoccus intein at a unique insertion site, than to other fungal and opisthokont inteins. Strikingly, independent analyses of Pacific and Atlantic samples revealed an intron at the same codon as the Bathycoccus PRP8 intein. The two elements are mutually exclusive and neither was found in cultured Bathycoccus or other picoprasinophyte genomes. Thus, wild Bathycoccus contain one of few non-fungal eukaryotic inteins known and a rare polymorphic intron. Our data indicate at least two Bathycoccus ecotypes exist, associated respectively with oceanic or mesotrophic environments. We hypothesize that intein propagation is facilitated by marine viruses; and, while intron gain is still poorly understood, presence of a spliceosomal intron where a locus lacks an intein raises the possibility of new, intein-primed mechanisms for intron gain. The discovery of nucleus-encoded inteins and associated sequence polymorphisms in uncultivated marine eukaryotes highlights their diversity and reveals potential sexual boundaries between populations indistinguishable by common marker genes.

  1. SeaDataNet: Pan-European infrastructure for ocean and marine data management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fichaut, M.; Schaap, D.; Maudire, G.; Manzella, G. M. R.

    2012-04-01

    The overall objective of the SeaDataNet project is the upgrade the present SeaDataNet infrastructure into an operationally robust and state-of-the-art Pan-European infrastructure for providing up-to-date and high quality access to ocean and marine metadata, data and data products originating from data acquisition activities by all engaged coastal states, by setting, adopting and promoting common data management standards and by realising technical and semantic interoperability with other relevant data management systems and initiatives on behalf of science, environmental management, policy making, and economy. SeaDataNet is undertaken by the National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODCs), and marine information services of major research institutes, from 31 coastal states bordering the European seas, and also includes Satellite Data Centres, expert modelling centres and the international organisations IOC, ICES and EU-JRC in its network. Its 40 data centres are highly skilled and have been actively engaged in data management for many years and have the essential capabilities and facilities for data quality control, long term stewardship, retrieval and distribution. SeaDataNet undertakes activities to achieve data access and data products services that meet requirements of end-users and intermediate user communities, such as GMES Marine Core Services (e.g. MyOcean), establishing SeaDataNet as the core data management component of the EMODNet infrastructure and contributing on behalf of Europe to global portal initiatives, such as the IOC/IODE - Ocean Data Portal (ODP), and GEOSS. Moreover it aims to achieve INSPIRE compliance and to contribute to the INSPIRE process for developing implementing rules for oceanography. • As part of the SeaDataNet upgrading and capacity building, training courses will be organised aiming at data managers and technicians at the data centres. For the data managers it is important, that they learn to work with the upgraded common Sea

  2. Overview of eutrophication indicators to assess environmental status within the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, João G.; Andersen, Jesper H.; Borja, Angel; Bricker, Suzanne B.; Camp, Jordi; Cardoso da Silva, Margarida; Garcés, Esther; Heiskanen, Anna-Stiina; Humborg, Christoph; Ignatiades, Lydia; Lancelot, Christiane; Menesguen, Alain; Tett, Paul; Hoepffner, Nicolas; Claussen, Ulrich

    2011-06-01

    In 2009, following approval of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD, 2008/56/EC), the European Commission (EC) created task groups to develop guidance for eleven quality descriptors that form the basis for evaluating ecosystem function. The objective was to provide European countries with practical guidelines for implementing the MSFD, and to produce a Commission Decision that encapsulated key points of the work in a legal framework. This paper presents a review of work carried out by the eutrophication task group, and reports our main findings to the scientific community. On the basis of an operational, management-oriented definition, we discuss the main methodologies that could be used for coastal and marine eutrophication assessment. Emphasis is placed on integrated approaches that account for physico-chemical and biological components, and combine both pelagic and benthic symptoms of eutrophication, in keeping with the holistic nature of the MSFD. We highlight general features that any marine eutrophication model should possess, rather than making specific recommendations. European seas range from highly eutrophic systems such as the Baltic to nutrient-poor environments such as the Aegean Sea. From a physical perspective, marine waters range from high energy environments of the north east Atlantic to the permanent vertical stratification of the Black Sea. This review aimed to encapsulate that variability, recognizing that meaningful guidance should be flexible enough to accommodate the widely differing characteristics of European seas, and that this information is potentially relevant in marine ecosystems worldwide. Given the spatial extent of the MSFD, innovative approaches are required to allow meaningful monitoring and assessment. Consequently, substantial logistic and financial challenges will drive research in areas such as remote sensing of harmful algal blooms, in situ sensor development, and mathematical models. Our review takes into

  3. Marine introductions in the Southern Ocean: an unrecognised hazard to biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Patrick N; Hewitt, Chad L; Riddle, Martin; McMinn, Andrew

    2003-02-01

    This study investigated the potential for transport of organisms between Hobart, Macquarie Island and the Antarctic continent by ships used in support of Antarctic science and tourism. Northward transport of plankton in ballast water is more likely than southward transport because ballast is normally loaded in the Antarctic and unloaded at the home port. Culturing of ballast water samples revealed that high-latitude hitchhikers were able to reach greater diversities when cultured at temperate thermal conditions than at typical Southern Ocean temperatures, suggesting the potential for establishment in the Tasmanian coastal environment. Several known invasive species were identified among fouling communities on the hulls of vessels that travel between Hobart and the Southern Ocean. Southward transport of hull fouling species is more likely than northward transport due to the accumulation of assemblages during the winter period spent in the home port of Hobart. This study does not prove that non-indigenous marine species have, or will be, transported and established as a consequence of Antarctic shipping but illustrates that the potential exists. Awareness of the potential risk and simple changes to operating procedures may reduce the chance of introductions in the future.

  4. Using community-level metrics to monitor the effects of marine protected areas on biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Soykan, Candan U; Lewison, Rebecca L

    2015-06-01

    Marine protected areas (MPAs) are used to protect species, communities, and their associated habitats, among other goals. Measuring MPA efficacy can be challenging, however, particularly when considering responses at the community level. We gathered 36 abundance and 14 biomass data sets on fish assemblages and used meta-analysis to evaluate the ability of 22 distinct community diversity metrics to detect differences in community structure between MPAs and nearby control sites. We also considered the effects of 6 covariates-MPA size and age, MPA size and age interaction, latitude, total species richness, and level of protection-on each metric. Some common metrics, such as species richness and Shannon diversity, did not differ consistently between MPA and control sites, whereas other metrics, such as total abundance and biomass, were consistently different across studies. Metric responses derived from the biomass data sets were more consistent than those based on the abundance data sets, suggesting that community-level biomass differs more predictably than abundance between MPA and control sites. Covariate analyses indicated that level of protection, latitude, MPA size, and the interaction between MPA size and age affect metric performance. These results highlight a handful of metrics, several of which are little known, that could be used to meet the increasing demand for community-level indicators of MPA effectiveness.

  5. Causes and effects of a highly successful marine invasion: Case-study of the introduced Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas in continental NW European estuaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troost, Karin

    2010-10-01

    Since the 1960's, the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas has been introduced for mariculture at several locations within NW Europe. The oyster established itself everywhere and expanded rapidly throughout the receiving ecosystems, forming extensive and dense reef structures. It became clear that the Pacific oyster induced major changes in NW European estuaries. This paper reviews the causes of the Pacific oyster's remarkably successful establishment and spread in The Netherlands and neighbouring countries, and includes a comprehensive review of consequences for the receiving communities. Ecosystem engineering by C. gigas and a relative lack of natural enemies in receiving ecosystems are identified as the most important characteristics facilitating the invader's successful establishment and expansion. The Pacific oyster's large filtration capacity and eco-engineering characteristics induced many changes in receiving ecosystems. Different estuaries are affected differently; in the Dutch Oosterschelde estuary expanding stocks saturate the carrying capacity whereas in the Wadden Sea no such problems exist. In general, the Pacific oyster seems to fit well within continental NW European estuarine ecosystems and there is no evidence that the invader outcompetes native bivalves. C. gigas induces changes in plankton composition, habitat heterogeneity and biodiversity, carrying capacity, food webs and parasite life cycles. The case of the Pacific oyster in NW European estuaries is only one example in an increasing series of biological invasions mediated by human activities. This case-study will contribute to further elucidating general mechanisms in marine invasions; invasions that sometimes appear a threat, but can also contribute to ecological complexity.

  6. Marine protist diversity in European coastal waters and sediments as revealed by high-throughput sequencing.

    PubMed

    Massana, Ramon; Gobet, Angélique; Audic, Stéphane; Bass, David; Bittner, Lucie; Boutte, Christophe; Chambouvet, Aurélie; Christen, Richard; Claverie, Jean-Michel; Decelle, Johan; Dolan, John R; Dunthorn, Micah; Edvardsen, Bente; Forn, Irene; Forster, Dominik; Guillou, Laure; Jaillon, Olivier; Kooistra, Wiebe H C F; Logares, Ramiro; Mahé, Frédéric; Not, Fabrice; Ogata, Hiroyuki; Pawlowski, Jan; Pernice, Massimo C; Probert, Ian; Romac, Sarah; Richards, Thomas; Santini, Sébastien; Shalchian-Tabrizi, Kamran; Siano, Raffaele; Simon, Nathalie; Stoeck, Thorsten; Vaulot, Daniel; Zingone, Adriana; de Vargas, Colomban

    2015-10-01

    Although protists are critical components of marine ecosystems, they are still poorly characterized. Here we analysed the taxonomic diversity of planktonic and benthic protist communities collected in six distant European coastal sites. Environmental deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA) from three size fractions (pico-, nano- and micro/mesoplankton), as well as from dissolved DNA and surface sediments were used as templates for tag pyrosequencing of the V4 region of the 18S ribosomal DNA. Beta-diversity analyses split the protist community structure into three main clusters: picoplankton-nanoplankton-dissolved DNA, micro/mesoplankton and sediments. Within each cluster, protist communities from the same site and time clustered together, while communities from the same site but different seasons were unrelated. Both DNA and RNA-based surveys provided similar relative abundances for most class-level taxonomic groups. Yet, particular groups were overrepresented in one of the two templates, such as marine alveolates (MALV)-I and MALV-II that were much more abundant in DNA surveys. Overall, the groups displaying the highest relative contribution were Dinophyceae, Diatomea, Ciliophora and Acantharia. Also, well represented were Mamiellophyceae, Cryptomonadales, marine alveolates and marine stramenopiles in the picoplankton, and Monadofilosa and basal Fungi in sediments. Our extensive and systematic sequencing of geographically separated sites provides the most comprehensive molecular description of coastal marine protist diversity to date.

  7. Phanerozoic marine biodiversity dynamics in light of the incompleteness of the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Lu, Peter J; Yogo, Motohiro; Marshall, Charles R

    2006-02-21

    Long-term evolutionary dynamics have been approached through quantitative analysis of the fossil record, but without explicitly taking its incompleteness into account. Here we explore the temporal covariance structure of per-genus origination and extinction rates for global marine fossil genera throughout the Phanerozoic, both before and after corrections for the incompleteness of the fossil record. Using uncorrected data based on Sepkoski's compendium, we find significant autocovariance within origination and extinction rates, as well as covariance between extinction and origination, not one, but two, intervals later, corroborating evidence for the unexplained temporal gap found by past studies. However, these effects vanish when the data are corrected for the incompleteness of the fossil record. Instead, we observe significant covariance only between extinction and origination in the immediately following intervals. The gap in the response of the biosphere to extinction in the uncorrected fossil record thus appears to be an artifact of the incompleteness of the fossil record, specifically due to episodic variation in the probability that taxa will be preserved, on time scales comparable to the temporal resolution of Sepkoski's data. Our results also indicate that at that temporal resolution (the stage/substage of duration approximately = 5 million years), changes in origination and extinction do not persist for longer than one interval, except that elevated origination rates immediately after extinction may last for more than a single interval. Thus, although certain individual cases may deviate from the overall pattern, we find that in general the biosphere's response to perturbation is immediate geologically and usually short-lived. PMID:16477008

  8. Phanerozoic marine biodiversity dynamics in light of the incompleteness of the fossil record

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Peter J.; Yogo, Motohiro; Marshall, Charles R.

    2006-01-01

    Long-term evolutionary dynamics have been approached through quantitative analysis of the fossil record, but without explicitly taking its incompleteness into account. Here we explore the temporal covariance structure of per-genus origination and extinction rates for global marine fossil genera throughout the Phanerozoic, both before and after corrections for the incompleteness of the fossil record. Using uncorrected data based on Sepkoski’s compendium, we find significant autocovariance within origination and extinction rates, as well as covariance between extinction and origination, not one, but two, intervals later, corroborating evidence for the unexplained temporal gap found by past studies. However, these effects vanish when the data are corrected for the incompleteness of the fossil record. Instead, we observe significant covariance only between extinction and origination in the immediately following intervals. The gap in the response of the biosphere to extinction in the uncorrected fossil record thus appears to be an artifact of the incompleteness of the fossil record, specifically due to episodic variation in the probability that taxa will be preserved, on time scales comparable to the temporal resolution of Sepkoski’s data. Our results also indicate that at that temporal resolution (the stage/substage of duration ≈5 million years), changes in origination and extinction do not persist for longer than one interval, except that elevated origination rates immediately after extinction may last for more than a single interval. Thus, although certain individual cases may deviate from the overall pattern, we find that in general the biosphere’s response to perturbation is immediate geologically and usually short-lived. PMID:16477008

  9. Clinical Marine Toxicology: A European Perspective for Clinical Toxicologists and Poison Centers

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, Corinne; de Haro, Luc

    2013-01-01

    Clinical marine toxicology is a rapidly changing area. Many of the new discoveries reported every year in Europe involve ecological disturbances—including global warming—that have induced modifications in the chorology, behavior, and toxicity of many species of venomous or poisonous aquatic life including algae, ascidians, fish and shellfish. These changes have raised a number of public issues associated, e.g., poisoning after ingestion of contaminated seafood, envenomation by fish stings, and exposure to harmful microorganism blooms. The purpose of this review of medical and scientific literature in marine toxicology is to highlight the growing challenges induced by ecological disturbances that confront clinical toxicologists during the everyday job in the European Poison Centers. PMID:23917333

  10. European Marine Observation and DataNetwork (EMODNET)- physical parameters: A support to marine science and operational oceanography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlin, Hans; Gies, Tobias; Giordano, Marco; Gorringe, Patrick; Manzella, Giuseppe; Maudire, Gilbert; Novellino, Antonio; Pagnani, Maureen; Petersson, Sian; Pouliquen, Sylvie; Rickards, Lesley; Schaap, Dick; Tijsse, Peter; van der Horste, Serge

    2013-04-01

    The overall objectives of EMODNET - physical parameters is to provide access to archived and real-time data on physical conditions in Europe's seas and oceans and to determine how well the data meet the needs of users. In particular it will contribute towards the definition of an operational European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) and contribute to developing the definition of the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) marine core service. Access to data and metadata will consider measurements from fixed stations that will cover at least: 1. wave height and period; 2. temperature of the water column; 3. wind speed and direction; 4. salinity of the water column; 5. horizontal velocity of the water column ; 6. light attenuation; 7. sea level. A first running prototype of the portal active from the end of 2011, the final release of the EMODnet PP is due by half June 2012. Then there are 6 months for testing and users' feedback acquisition and management. The project finishes 16th December 2013 after one year of maintenance. Compliance with INSPIRE framework and temporal and geographical data coverage are ensured under the requirements contained in the several Commission Regulations issued from 2008 until 2010. The metadata are based upon the ISO 19115 standard and are compliant with the INSPIRE directive and regulations. This assures also a minimum metadata content in both systems that will facilitate the setting up of a portal that can provide information on data and access to them, depending on the internal data policy of potential contributors. Data coverage: There are three pillars sustaining EMODnet PP: EuroGOOS ROOSs (the EuroGOOS regional Operational Systems), MyOcean and SeaDataNet. MyOcean and EuroGOOS have agreed in EuroGOOS general assemblies (2008-2009-2010) to share their efforts to set up a common infrastructure for real-time data integration for operational oceanography needs extending the global and regional portals set up

  11. Potential benefits to fisheries and biodiversity of the Chagos Archipelago/British Indian Ocean Territory as a no-take marine reserve.

    PubMed

    Koldewey, Heather J; Curnick, David; Harding, Simon; Harrison, Lucy R; Gollock, Matthew

    2010-11-01

    On 1st April 2010, the British Government announced designation of the British Indian Ocean Territory--or Chagos Archipelago--as the world's largest marine protected area (MPA). This near pristine ocean ecosystem now represents 16% of the worlds fully protected coral reef, 60% of the world's no-take protected areas and an uncontaminated reference site for ecological studies. In addition these gains for biodiversity conservation, the Chagos/BIOT MPA also offers subsidiary opportunities to act as a fisheries management tool for the western Indian Ocean, considering its size and location. While the benefits of MPAs for coral-reef dwelling species are established, there is uncertainty about their effects on pelagic migratory species. This paper reviews the increasing body of evidence to demonstrate that positive, measurable reserve effects exist for pelagic populations and that migratory species can benefit from no-take marine reserves. PMID:20965522

  12. Marine Litter Distribution and Density in European Seas, from the Shelves to Deep Basins

    PubMed Central

    Pham, Christopher K.; Ramirez-Llodra, Eva; Alt, Claudia H. S.; Amaro, Teresa; Bergmann, Melanie; Canals, Miquel; Company, Joan B.; Davies, Jaime; Duineveld, Gerard; Galgani, François; Howell, Kerry L.; Huvenne, Veerle A. I.; Isidro, Eduardo; Jones, Daniel O. B.; Lastras, Galderic; Morato, Telmo; Gomes-Pereira, José Nuno; Purser, Autun; Stewart, Heather; Tojeira, Inês; Tubau, Xavier; Van Rooij, David; Tyler, Paul A.

    2014-01-01

    Anthropogenic litter is present in all marine habitats, from beaches to the most remote points in the oceans. On the seafloor, marine litter, particularly plastic, can accumulate in high densities with deleterious consequences for its inhabitants. Yet, because of the high cost involved with sampling the seafloor, no large-scale assessment of distribution patterns was available to date. Here, we present data on litter distribution and density collected during 588 video and trawl surveys across 32 sites in European waters. We found litter to be present in the deepest areas and at locations as remote from land as the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone across the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The highest litter density occurs in submarine canyons, whilst the lowest density can be found on continental shelves and on ocean ridges. Plastic was the most prevalent litter item found on the seafloor. Litter from fishing activities (derelict fishing lines and nets) was particularly common on seamounts, banks, mounds and ocean ridges. Our results highlight the extent of the problem and the need for action to prevent increasing accumulation of litter in marine environments. PMID:24788771

  13. Marine litter distribution and density in European seas, from the shelves to deep basins.

    PubMed

    Pham, Christopher K; Ramirez-Llodra, Eva; Alt, Claudia H S; Amaro, Teresa; Bergmann, Melanie; Canals, Miquel; Company, Joan B; Davies, Jaime; Duineveld, Gerard; Galgani, François; Howell, Kerry L; Huvenne, Veerle A I; Isidro, Eduardo; Jones, Daniel O B; Lastras, Galderic; Morato, Telmo; Gomes-Pereira, José Nuno; Purser, Autun; Stewart, Heather; Tojeira, Inês; Tubau, Xavier; Van Rooij, David; Tyler, Paul A

    2014-01-01

    Anthropogenic litter is present in all marine habitats, from beaches to the most remote points in the oceans. On the seafloor, marine litter, particularly plastic, can accumulate in high densities with deleterious consequences for its inhabitants. Yet, because of the high cost involved with sampling the seafloor, no large-scale assessment of distribution patterns was available to date. Here, we present data on litter distribution and density collected during 588 video and trawl surveys across 32 sites in European waters. We found litter to be present in the deepest areas and at locations as remote from land as the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone across the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The highest litter density occurs in submarine canyons, whilst the lowest density can be found on continental shelves and on ocean ridges. Plastic was the most prevalent litter item found on the seafloor. Litter from fishing activities (derelict fishing lines and nets) was particularly common on seamounts, banks, mounds and ocean ridges. Our results highlight the extent of the problem and the need for action to prevent increasing accumulation of litter in marine environments. PMID:24788771

  14. Marine litter distribution and density in European seas, from the shelves to deep basins.

    PubMed

    Pham, Christopher K; Ramirez-Llodra, Eva; Alt, Claudia H S; Amaro, Teresa; Bergmann, Melanie; Canals, Miquel; Company, Joan B; Davies, Jaime; Duineveld, Gerard; Galgani, François; Howell, Kerry L; Huvenne, Veerle A I; Isidro, Eduardo; Jones, Daniel O B; Lastras, Galderic; Morato, Telmo; Gomes-Pereira, José Nuno; Purser, Autun; Stewart, Heather; Tojeira, Inês; Tubau, Xavier; Van Rooij, David; Tyler, Paul A

    2014-01-01

    Anthropogenic litter is present in all marine habitats, from beaches to the most remote points in the oceans. On the seafloor, marine litter, particularly plastic, can accumulate in high densities with deleterious consequences for its inhabitants. Yet, because of the high cost involved with sampling the seafloor, no large-scale assessment of distribution patterns was available to date. Here, we present data on litter distribution and density collected during 588 video and trawl surveys across 32 sites in European waters. We found litter to be present in the deepest areas and at locations as remote from land as the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone across the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The highest litter density occurs in submarine canyons, whilst the lowest density can be found on continental shelves and on ocean ridges. Plastic was the most prevalent litter item found on the seafloor. Litter from fishing activities (derelict fishing lines and nets) was particularly common on seamounts, banks, mounds and ocean ridges. Our results highlight the extent of the problem and the need for action to prevent increasing accumulation of litter in marine environments.

  15. Molecular diversity and distribution of marine fungi across 130 European environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Richards, Thomas A; Leonard, Guy; Mahé, Frédéric; Del Campo, Javier; Romac, Sarah; Jones, Meredith D M; Maguire, Finlay; Dunthorn, Micah; De Vargas, Colomban; Massana, Ramon; Chambouvet, Aurélie

    2015-11-22

    Environmental DNA and culture-based analyses have suggested that fungi are present in low diversity and in low abundance in many marine environments, especially in the upper water column. Here, we use a dual approach involving high-throughput diversity tag sequencing from both DNA and RNA templates and fluorescent cell counts to evaluate the diversity and relative abundance of fungi across marine samples taken from six European near-shore sites. We removed very rare fungal operational taxonomic units (OTUs) selecting only OTUs recovered from multiple samples for a detailed analysis. This approach identified a set of 71 fungal 'OTU clusters' that account for 66% of all the sequences assigned to the Fungi. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that this diversity includes a significant number of chytrid-like lineages that had not been previously described, indicating that the marine environment encompasses a number of zoosporic fungi that are new to taxonomic inventories. Using the sequence datasets, we identified cases where fungal OTUs were sampled across multiple geographical sites and between different sampling depths. This was especially clear in one relatively abundant and diverse phylogroup tentatively named Novel Chytrid-Like-Clade 1 (NCLC1). For comparison, a subset of the water column samples was also investigated using fluorescent microscopy to examine the abundance of eukaryotes with chitin cell walls. Comparisons of relative abundance of RNA-derived fungal tag sequences and chitin cell-wall counts demonstrate that fungi constitute a low fraction of the eukaryotic community in these water column samples. Taken together, these results demonstrate the phylogenetic position and environmental distribution of 71 lineages, improving our understanding of the diversity and abundance of fungi in marine environments.

  16. Molecular diversity and distribution of marine fungi across 130 European environmental samples

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Thomas A.; Leonard, Guy; Mahé, Frédéric; del Campo, Javier; Romac, Sarah; Jones, Meredith D. M.; Maguire, Finlay; Dunthorn, Micah; De Vargas, Colomban; Massana, Ramon; Chambouvet, Aurélie

    2015-01-01

    Environmental DNA and culture-based analyses have suggested that fungi are present in low diversity and in low abundance in many marine environments, especially in the upper water column. Here, we use a dual approach involving high-throughput diversity tag sequencing from both DNA and RNA templates and fluorescent cell counts to evaluate the diversity and relative abundance of fungi across marine samples taken from six European near-shore sites. We removed very rare fungal operational taxonomic units (OTUs) selecting only OTUs recovered from multiple samples for a detailed analysis. This approach identified a set of 71 fungal ‘OTU clusters' that account for 66% of all the sequences assigned to the Fungi. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that this diversity includes a significant number of chytrid-like lineages that had not been previously described, indicating that the marine environment encompasses a number of zoosporic fungi that are new to taxonomic inventories. Using the sequence datasets, we identified cases where fungal OTUs were sampled across multiple geographical sites and between different sampling depths. This was especially clear in one relatively abundant and diverse phylogroup tentatively named Novel Chytrid-Like-Clade 1 (NCLC1). For comparison, a subset of the water column samples was also investigated using fluorescent microscopy to examine the abundance of eukaryotes with chitin cell walls. Comparisons of relative abundance of RNA-derived fungal tag sequences and chitin cell-wall counts demonstrate that fungi constitute a low fraction of the eukaryotic community in these water column samples. Taken together, these results demonstrate the phylogenetic position and environmental distribution of 71 lineages, improving our understanding of the diversity and abundance of fungi in marine environments. PMID:26582030

  17. Molecular diversity and distribution of marine fungi across 130 European environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Richards, Thomas A; Leonard, Guy; Mahé, Frédéric; Del Campo, Javier; Romac, Sarah; Jones, Meredith D M; Maguire, Finlay; Dunthorn, Micah; De Vargas, Colomban; Massana, Ramon; Chambouvet, Aurélie

    2015-11-22

    Environmental DNA and culture-based analyses have suggested that fungi are present in low diversity and in low abundance in many marine environments, especially in the upper water column. Here, we use a dual approach involving high-throughput diversity tag sequencing from both DNA and RNA templates and fluorescent cell counts to evaluate the diversity and relative abundance of fungi across marine samples taken from six European near-shore sites. We removed very rare fungal operational taxonomic units (OTUs) selecting only OTUs recovered from multiple samples for a detailed analysis. This approach identified a set of 71 fungal 'OTU clusters' that account for 66% of all the sequences assigned to the Fungi. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that this diversity includes a significant number of chytrid-like lineages that had not been previously described, indicating that the marine environment encompasses a number of zoosporic fungi that are new to taxonomic inventories. Using the sequence datasets, we identified cases where fungal OTUs were sampled across multiple geographical sites and between different sampling depths. This was especially clear in one relatively abundant and diverse phylogroup tentatively named Novel Chytrid-Like-Clade 1 (NCLC1). For comparison, a subset of the water column samples was also investigated using fluorescent microscopy to examine the abundance of eukaryotes with chitin cell walls. Comparisons of relative abundance of RNA-derived fungal tag sequences and chitin cell-wall counts demonstrate that fungi constitute a low fraction of the eukaryotic community in these water column samples. Taken together, these results demonstrate the phylogenetic position and environmental distribution of 71 lineages, improving our understanding of the diversity and abundance of fungi in marine environments. PMID:26582030

  18. Application of biomarkers to assess the condition of European Marine Sites.

    PubMed

    Hagger, Josephine A; Galloway, Tamara S; Langston, William J; Jones, Malcolm B

    2009-07-01

    A series of European Marine Sites has been designated as Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) in England. The aim of this study was to develop a practical methodology to assess the condition of SACs by applying a suite of biomarkers. Biomarkers were applied to the blue mussel Mytilus edulis and the shore crab Carcinus maenas from the Fal and Helford SAC (Cornwall). Individual biomarkers provided useful diagnostic information on the activity of certain classes of contaminants and an integrated Biomarker Response Index (BRI) was used to achieve a more holistic understanding of the condition of the SAC. The BRI indicated that the general health of both organisms was impacted in the upper part of the SAC (Fal Estuary) which correlated well with known chemical hotspots and sources of contamination. The BRI allows a pragmatic way to prioritise SAC sites that may require further investigative studies. PMID:19359075

  19. Parasites as biological tags in marine fisheries research: European Atlantic waters.

    PubMed

    Mackenzie, K; Hemmingsen, W

    2015-01-01

    Studies of the use of parasites as biological tags for stock identification and to follow migrations of marine fish, mammals and invertebrates in European Atlantic waters are critically reviewed and evaluated. The region covered includes the North, Baltic, Barents and White Seas plus Icelandic waters, but excludes the Mediterranean and Black Seas. Each fish species or ecological group of species is treated separately. More parasite tag studies have been carried out on Atlantic herring Clupea harengus than on any other species, while cod Gadus morhua have also been the subject of many studies. Other species that have been the subjects of more than one study are: blue whiting Micromesistius poutassou, whiting Merlangius merlangus, haddock Melanogrammus aeglefinus, Norway pout Trisopterus esmarkii, horse mackerel Trachurus trachurus and mackerel Scomber scombrus. Other species are dealt with under the general headings redfishes, flatfish, tunas, anadromous fish, elasmobranchs, marine mammals and invertebrates. A final section highlights how parasites can be, and have been, misused as biological tags, and how this can be avoided. It also reviews recent developments in methodology and parasite genetics, considers the potential effects of climate change on the distributions of both hosts and parasites, and suggests host-parasite systems that should reward further research.

  20. Consumers' health risk-benefit perception of seafood and attitude toward the marine environment: Insights from five European countries.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Silke; Sioen, Isabelle; Pieniak, Zuzanna; De Henauw, Stefaan; Maulvault, Ana Luisa; Reuver, Marieke; Fait, Gabriella; Cano-Sancho, German; Verbeke, Wim

    2015-11-01

    This research classifies European consumers into segments based on their health risk-benefit perception related to seafood consumption. The profiling variables of these segments are seafood consumption frequency, general attitude toward consuming fish, confidence in control organizations, attitude toward the marine environment, environmental concern and socio-demographics. A web-based survey was performed in one western European country (Belgium), one northern European country (Ireland) and three southern European countries (Italy, Portugal and Spain), resulting in a total sample of 2824 participants. A cluster analysis was performed based on risk-benefit perception related to seafood and the profiles of the segments were determined by a robust 2-way ANOVA analysis accounting for country effects. Although this study confirms consumers' positive image of consuming seafood, gradients are found in health risk-benefit perception related to seafood consumption. Seafood consumption frequency is mainly determined by country-related traditions and habits related to seafood rather than by risk-benefit perceptions. Segments with a higher benefit perception, irrespective of their level of risk perception, show a more positive attitude toward consuming seafood and toward the marine environment; moreover, they report a higher concern about the marine environment and have a higher involvement with seafood and with the marine environment. Consequently, information campaigns concentrating on pro-environmental behavior are recommended to raise the involvement with seafood and the marine environment as this is associated with a higher environmental concern. This research underpins that in such information campaigns a nationally differentiated rather than a pan-European or international information strategy should be aimed for because of significant cultural differences between the identified segments. PMID:25864933

  1. Consumers' health risk-benefit perception of seafood and attitude toward the marine environment: Insights from five European countries.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Silke; Sioen, Isabelle; Pieniak, Zuzanna; De Henauw, Stefaan; Maulvault, Ana Luisa; Reuver, Marieke; Fait, Gabriella; Cano-Sancho, German; Verbeke, Wim

    2015-11-01

    This research classifies European consumers into segments based on their health risk-benefit perception related to seafood consumption. The profiling variables of these segments are seafood consumption frequency, general attitude toward consuming fish, confidence in control organizations, attitude toward the marine environment, environmental concern and socio-demographics. A web-based survey was performed in one western European country (Belgium), one northern European country (Ireland) and three southern European countries (Italy, Portugal and Spain), resulting in a total sample of 2824 participants. A cluster analysis was performed based on risk-benefit perception related to seafood and the profiles of the segments were determined by a robust 2-way ANOVA analysis accounting for country effects. Although this study confirms consumers' positive image of consuming seafood, gradients are found in health risk-benefit perception related to seafood consumption. Seafood consumption frequency is mainly determined by country-related traditions and habits related to seafood rather than by risk-benefit perceptions. Segments with a higher benefit perception, irrespective of their level of risk perception, show a more positive attitude toward consuming seafood and toward the marine environment; moreover, they report a higher concern about the marine environment and have a higher involvement with seafood and with the marine environment. Consequently, information campaigns concentrating on pro-environmental behavior are recommended to raise the involvement with seafood and the marine environment as this is associated with a higher environmental concern. This research underpins that in such information campaigns a nationally differentiated rather than a pan-European or international information strategy should be aimed for because of significant cultural differences between the identified segments.

  2. Oceans and Human Health (OHH): a European perspective from the Marine Board of the European Science Foundation (Marine Board-ESF).

    PubMed

    Moore, Michael N; Depledge, Michael H; Fleming, Lora; Hess, Philipp; Lees, David; Leonard, Paul; Madsen, Lise; Owen, Richard; Pirlet, Hans; Seys, Jan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Viarengo, Aldo

    2013-05-01

    will impact adversely on efforts to alleviate poverty, sustain the availability of environmental goods and services and improve health and social and economic stability; and thus, will impinge on many policy decisions, both nationally and internationally. Knowledge exchange (KE) will be a key element of any ensuing research. KE will facilitate the integration of biological, medical, epidemiological, social and economic disciplines, as well as the emergence of synergies between seemingly unconnected areas of science and socio-economic issues, and will help to leverage knowledge transfer across the European Union (EU) and beyond. An integrated interdisciplinary systems approach is an effective way to bring together the appropriate groups of scientists, social scientists, economists, industry and other stakeholders with the policy formulators in order to address the complexities of interfacial problems in the area of environment and human health. The Marine Board of the European Science Foundation Working Group on "Oceans and Human Health" has been charged with developing a position paper on this topic with a view to identifying the scientific, social and economic challenges and making recommendations to the EU on policy-relevant research and development activities in this arena. This paper includes the background to health-related issues linked to the coastal environment and highlights the main arguments for an ecosystem-based whole systems approach.

  3. Evidence of threat to European economy and biodiversity following the introduction of an alien pathogen on the fungal-animal boundary.

    PubMed

    Ercan, Didem; Andreou, Demetra; Sana, Salma; Öntaş, Canan; Baba, Esin; Top, Nildeniz; Karakuş, Uğur; Tarkan, Ali Serhan; Gozlan, Rodolphe Elie

    2015-09-02

    Recent years have seen a global and rapid resurgence of fungal diseases with direct impact on biodiversity and local extinctions of amphibian, coral, or bat populations. Despite similar evidence of population extinction in European fish populations and the associated risk of food aquaculture due to the emerging rosette agent Sphaerothecum destruens, an emerging infectious eukaryotic intracellular pathogen on the fungal-animal boundary, our understanding of current threats remained limited. Long-term monitoring of population decline for the 8-year post-introduction of the fungal pathogen was coupled with seasonal molecular analyses of the 18S rDNA and histological work of native fish species organs. A phylogenetic relationship between the existing EU and US strains using the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer sequences was also carried out. Here, we provide evidence that this emerging parasite has now been introduced via Pseudorasbora parva to sea bass farms, an industry that represents over 400 M€€ annually in a Mediterranean region that is already economically vulnerable. We also provide for the first time evidence linking S. destruens to disease and severe declines in International Union for Conservation of Nature threatened European endemic freshwater fishes (i.e. 80% to 90 % mortalities). Our findings are thus of major economic and conservation importance.

  4. SeaDataNet II - EMODNet Bathymetry - building a pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management and a digital high resolution bathymetry for European seas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaap, Dick M. A.; Fichaut, Michele

    2015-04-01

    The second phase of the project SeaDataNet is well underway since October 2011. The main objective is to improve operations and to progress towards an efficient data management infrastructure able to handle the diversity and large volume of data collected via research cruises and monitoring activities in European marine waters and global oceans. The SeaDataNet infrastructure comprises a network of interconnected data centres and a central SeaDataNet portal. The portal provides users a unified and transparent overview of the metadata and controlled access to the large collections of data sets, managed by the interconnected data centres, and the various SeaDataNet standards and tools,. SeaDataNet is also setting and governing marine data standards, and exploring and establishing interoperability solutions to connect to other e-infrastructures on the basis of standards of ISO (19115, 19139), OGC (WMS, WFS, CS-W and SWE), and OpenSearch. The population of directories has increased considerably in cooperation and involvement in associated EU projects and initiatives. SeaDataNet now gives overview and access to more than 1.6 million data sets for physical oceanography, chemistry, geology, geophysics, bathymetry and biology from more than 100 connected data centres from 34 countries riparian to European seas. Access to marine data is also a key issue for the implementation of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). The EU communication 'Marine Knowledge 2020' underpins the importance of data availability and harmonising access to marine data from different sources. SeaDataNet qualified itself for an active role in the data management component of the EMODnet (European Marine Observation and Data network) that is promoted in the EU Communication. Starting 2009 EMODnet pilot portals have been initiated for marine data themes: digital bathymetry, chemistry, physical oceanography, geology, biology, and seabed habitat mapping. These portals are being expanded to all

  5. Analysis of the nucleoprotein gene identifies three distinct lineages of viral haemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV) within the European marine environment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snow, M.; Cunningham, C.O.; Melvin, W.T.; Kurath, G.

    1999-01-01

    A ribonuclease (RNase) protection assay (RPA) has been used to detect nucleotide sequence variation within the nucleoprotein gene of 39 viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) isolates of European marine origin. The classification of VHSV isolates based on RPA cleavage patterns permitted the identification of ten distinct groups of viruses based on differences at the molecular level. The nucleotide sequence of representatives of each of these groupings was determined and subjected to phylogenetic analysis. This revealed grouping of the European marine isolates of VHSV into three genotypes circulating within distinct geographic areas. A fourth genotype was identified comprising isolates originating from North America. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that VHSV isolates recovered from wild caught fish around the British Isles were genetically related to isolates responsible for losses in farmed turbot. Furthermore, a relationship between naturally occurring marine isolates and VHSV isolates causing mortality among rainbow trout in continental Europe was demonstrated. Analysis of the nucleoprotein gene identifies distinct lineages of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus within the European marine environment. Virus Res. 63, 35-44. Available from: 

  6. Geo-Seas - a pan-European infrastructure for the management of marine geological and geophysical data.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glaves, Helen; Graham, Colin

    2010-05-01

    Geo-Seas - a pan-European infrastructure for the management of marine geological and geophysical data. Helen Glaves1 and Colin Graham2 on behalf of the Geo-Seas consortium The Geo-Seas project will create a network of twenty six European marine geoscience data centres from seventeen coastal countries including six from the Baltic Sea area. This will be achieved through the development of a pan-European infrastructure for the exchange of marine geoscientific data. Researchers will be able to locate and access harmonised and federated marine geological and geophysical datasets and data products held by the data centres through the Geo-Seas data portal, using a common data catalogue. The new infrastructure, an expansion of the exisiting SeaDataNet, will create an infrastructure covering oceanographic and marine geoscientific data. New data products and services will be developed following consultations with users on their current and future research requirements. Common data standards will be implemented across all of the data centres and other geological and geophysical organisations will be encouraged to adopt the protocols, standards and tools which are developed as part of the Geo-Seas project. Oceanographic and marine data include a wide range of variables, an important category of which are the geological and geophysical data sets. This data includes raw observational and analytical data as well as derived data products from seabed sediment samples, boreholes, geophysical surveys (seismic, gravity etc) and sidescan sonar surveys. All of which are essential in order to produce a complete interpretation of seabed geology. Despite there being a large volume of geological and geophysical data available for the marine environment it is currently very difficult to use these datasets in an integrated way between organisations due to different nomenclatures, formats, scales and coordinate systems being used within different organisations and also within different

  7. Conservation, Spillover and Gene Flow within a Network of Northern European Marine Protected Areas

    PubMed Central

    Huserbråten, Mats Brockstedt Olsen; Moland, Even; Knutsen, Halvor; Olsen, Esben Moland; André, Carl; Stenseth, Nils Chr.

    2013-01-01

    To ensure that marine protected areas (MPAs) benefit conservation and fisheries, the effectiveness of MPA designs has to be evaluated in field studies. Using an interdisciplinary approach, we empirically assessed the design of a network of northern MPAs where fishing for European lobster (Homarusgammarus) is prohibited. First, we demonstrate a high level of residency and survival (50%) for almost a year (363 days) within MPAs, despite small MPA sizes (0.5-1 km2). Second, we demonstrate limited export (4.7%) of lobsters tagged within MPAs (N = 1810) to neighbouring fished areas, over a median distance of 1.6 km out to maximum 21 km away from MPA centres. In comparison, median movement distance of lobsters recaptured within MPAs was 164 m, and recapture rate was high (40%). Third, we demonstrate a high level of gene flow within the study region, with an estimated FST of less than 0.0001 over a ≈ 400 km coastline. Thus, the restricted movement of older life stages, combined with a high level of gene flow suggests that connectivity is primarily driven by larval drift. Larval export from the MPAs can most likely affect areas far beyond their borders. Our findings are of high importance for the design of MPA networks for sedentary species with pelagic early life stages. PMID:24039927

  8. Using ERS-2 SAR images for routine observation of marine pollution in European coastal waters.

    PubMed

    Gade, M; Alpers, W

    1999-09-30

    More than 660 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images acquired over the southern Baltic Sea, the North Sea, and the Gulf of Lion in the Mediterranean Sea by the Second European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-2) have been analyzed since December 1996 with respect to radar signatures of marine pollution and other phenomena causing similar signatures. First results of our analysis reveal that the seas are most polluted along the main shipping routes. The sizes of the detected oil spills vary between < 0.1 km2 and > 56 km2. SAR images acquired during descending (morning) and ascending (evening) satellite passes show different percentages of oil pollution, because most of this pollution occurs during night time and is still visible on the SAR images acquired in the morning time. Moreover, we found a higher amount of oil spills on SAR images acquired during summer (April-September) than on SAR images acquired during winter (October-March). We attribute this finding to the higher mean wind speed encountered in all three test areas during winter. By using an ERS-2 SAR image of the North Sea test area we show how the reduction of the normalized radar backscattering cross section (NRCS) by an oil spill depends on wind speed.

  9. Semantically supporting data discovery, markup and aggregation in the European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowry, Roy; Leadbetter, Adam

    2014-05-01

    The semantic content of the NERC Vocabulary Server (NVS) has been developed over thirty years. It has been used to mark up metadata and data in a wide range of international projects, including the European Commission (EC) Framework Programme 7 projects SeaDataNet and The Open Service Network for Marine Environmental Data (NETMAR). Within the United States, the National Science Foundation projects Rolling Deck to Repository and Biological & Chemical Data Management Office (BCO-DMO) use concepts from NVS for markup. Further, typed relationships between NVS concepts and terms served by the Marine Metadata Interoperability Ontology Registry and Repository. The vast majority of the concepts publicly served from NVS (35% of ~82,000) form the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) Parameter Usage Vocabulary (PUV). The PUV is instantiated on the NVS as a SKOS concept collection. These terms are used to describe the individual channels in data and metadata served by, for example, BODC, SeaDataNet and BCO-DMO. The PUV terms are designed to be very precise and may contain a high level of detail. Some users have reported that the PUV is difficult to navigate due to its size and complexity (a problem CSIRO have begun to address by deploying a SISSVoc interface to the NVS), and it has been difficult to aggregate data as multiple PUV terms can - with full validity - be used to describe the same data channels. Better approaches to data aggregation are required as a use case for the PUV from the EC European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) Chemistry project. One solution, proposed and demonstrated during the course of the NETMAR project, is to build new SKOS concept collections which formalise the desired aggregations for given applications, and uses typed relationships to state which PUV concepts contribute to a specific aggregation. Development of these new collections requires input from a group of experts in the application domain who can decide which PUV

  10. Eco-engineered rock pools: a concrete solution to biodiversity loss and urban sprawl in the marine environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Firth, Louise B.; Browne, Keith A.; Knights, Antony M.; Hawkins, Stephen J.; Nash, Róisín

    2016-09-01

    In coastal habitats artificial structures typically support lower biodiversity and can support greater numbers of non-native and opportunistic species than natural rocky reefs. Eco-engineering experiments are typically trialed to succeed; but arguably as much is learnt from failure than from success. Our goal was to trial a generic, cost effective, eco-engineering technique that could be incorporated into rock armouring anywhere in the world. Artificial rock pools were created from manipulated concrete between boulders on the exposed and sheltered sides of a causeway. Experimental treatments were installed in locations where they were expected to fail and compared to controls installed in locations in which they were expected to succeed. Control pools were created lower on the structure where they were immersed on every tidal cycle; experimental pools were created above mean high water spring tide which were only immersed on spring tides. We hypothesised that lower and exposed pools would support significantly higher taxon and functional diversity than upper and sheltered pools. The concrete pools survived the severe winter storms of 2013/14. After 12 months, non-destructive sampling revealed significantly higher mean taxon and functional richness in lower pools than upper pools on the exposed side only. After 24 months the sheltered pools had become inundated with sediments, thus failing to function as rock pools as intended. Destructive sampling on the exposed side revealed significantly higher mean functional richness in lower than upper pools. However, a surprisingly high number of taxa colonised the upper pools leading to no significant difference in mean taxon richness among shore heights. A high number of rare taxa in the lower pools led to total taxon richness being almost twice that of upper pools. These findings highlight that even when expected to fail concrete pools supported diverse assemblages, thus representing an affordable, replicable means of

  11. Novel lineage patterns from an automated water sampler to probe marine microbial biodiversity with ships of opportunity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stern, Rowena F.; Picard, Kathryn T.; Hamilton, Kristina M.; Walne, Antony; Tarran, Glen A.; Mills, David; McQuatters-Gollop, Abigail; Edwards, Martin

    2015-09-01

    There is a paucity of data on long-term, spatially resolved changes in microbial diversity and biogeography in marine systems, and yet these organisms underpin fundamental ecological processes in the oceans affecting socio-economic values of the marine environment. We report results from a new autonomous Water and Microplankton Sampler (WaMS) that is carried within the Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR). Whilst the CPR with its larger mesh size (270 μm), is designed to capture larger plankton, the WaMS was designed as an additional device to capture plankton below 50 μm and delicate larger species, often destroyed by net sampling methods. A 454 pyrosequencing and flow cytometric investigation of eukaryotic microbes using the partial 18S rDNA from thirteen WaMS samples collected over three months in the English Channel revealed a wide diversity of organisms. Alveolates, Fungi, and picoplanktonic Chlorophytes were the most common lineages captured despite the small sample volumes (200-250 ml). The survey also identified Cercozoa and MAST heterotrophic Stramenopiles, normally missed in microscopic-based plankton surveys. The most common was the likely parasitic LKM11 Rozellomycota lineage which comprised 43.2% of all reads and are rarely observed in marine pelagic surveys. An additional 9.5% of reads belonged to other parasitic lineages including marine Syndiniales and Ichthyosporea. Sample variation was considerable, indicating that microbial diversity is spatially or temporally patchy. Our study has shown that the WaMS sampling system is autonomous, versatile and robust, and due to its deployment on the established CPR network, is a cost-effective monitoring tool for microbial diversity for the detection of smaller and delicate taxa.

  12. Knowledge base for growth and innovation in ocean economy: assembly and dissemination of marine data for seabed mapping - European Marine Observation Data Network - EMODnet Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novellino, Antonio; Gorringe, Patrick; Schaap, Dick; Pouliquen, Sylvie; Rickards, Lesley; Manzella, Giuseppe

    2014-05-01

    The Physics preparatory action (MARE/2010/02 - Lot [SI2.579120]) had the overall objectives to provide access to archived and near real-time data on physical conditions as monitored by fixed stations and Ferrybox lines in all the European sea basins and oceans and to determine how well the data meet the needs of users. The existing EMODnet-Physics portal, www.emodnet-physics.eu, includes systems for physical data from the whole Europe (wave height and period, temperature of the water column, wind speed and direction, salinity of the water column, horizontal velocity of the water column, light attenuation, and sea level) provided mainly by fixed stations and ferry-box platforms, discovering related data sets (both near real time and historical data sets), viewing and downloading of the data from about 470 platforms across the European Sea basins. It makes layers of physical data and their metadata available for use and contributes towards the definition of an operational European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet). It is based on a strong collaboration between EuroGOOS member institutes and its regional operational oceanographic systems (ROOSs), and it brings together two marine, but different, communities : the "real time" ocean observing institutes and centers and the National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODCs) that are in charge for archived ocean data validation, quality check and continuous update of data archives for marine environmental monitoring. EMODnet Physics is a Marine Observation and Data Information System that provides a single point of access to near real time and historical achieved data, it is built on existing infrastructure by adding value and avoiding any unnecessary complexity, it provides data access to any relevant user, and is aimed at attracting new data holders and providing better and more data. With a long term-vision for a sustained pan European Ocean Observation System EMODnet Physics is supporting the coordination of the

  13. SeaDataNet II - EMODNet - building a pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaap, Dick M. A.; Fichaut, Michele

    2014-05-01

    The second phase of the project SeaDataNet is well underway since October 2011 and is making good progress. The main objective is to improve operations and to progress towards an efficient data management infrastructure able to handle the diversity and large volume of data collected via research cruises and monitoring activities in European marine waters and global oceans. The SeaDataNet infrastructure comprises a network of interconnected data centres and a central SeaDataNet portal. The portal provides users a unified and transparent overview of the metadata and controlled access to the large collections of data sets, managed by the interconnected data centres, and the various SeaDataNet standards and tools,. Recently the 1st Innovation Cycle has been completed, including upgrading of the CDI Data Discovery and Access service to ISO 19139 and making it fully INSPIRE compliant. The extensive SeaDataNet Vocabularies have been upgraded too and implemented for all SeaDataNet European metadata directories. SeaDataNet is setting and governing marine data standards, and exploring and establishing interoperability solutions to connect to other e-infrastructures on the basis of standards of ISO (19115, 19139), OGC (WMS, WFS, CS-W and SWE), and OpenSearch. The population of directories has also increased considerably in cooperation and involvement in associated EU projects and initiatives. SeaDataNet now gives overview and access to more than 1.4 million data sets for physical oceanography, chemistry, geology, geophysics, bathymetry and biology from more than 90 connected data centres from 30 countries riparian to European seas. Access to marine data is also a key issue for the implementation of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). The EU communication 'Marine Knowledge 2020' underpins the importance of data availability and harmonising access to marine data from different sources. SeaDataNet qualified itself for leading the data management component of the

  14. Spatial and seasonal variation in diversity and structure of microbial biofilms on marine plastics in Northern European waters.

    PubMed

    Oberbeckmann, Sonja; Loeder, Martin G J; Gerdts, Gunnar; Osborn, A Mark

    2014-11-01

    Plastic pollution is now recognised as a major threat to marine environments and marine biota. Recent research highlights that diverse microbial species are found to colonise plastic surfaces (the plastisphere) within marine waters. Here, we investigate how the structure and diversity of marine plastisphere microbial community vary with respect to season, location and plastic substrate type. We performed a 6-week exposure experiment with polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles in the North Sea (UK) as well as sea surface sampling of plastic polymers in Northern European waters. Scanning electron microscopy revealed diverse plastisphere communities comprising prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and sequencing analysis revealed that plastisphere microbial communities on PET fragments varied both with season and location and comprised of bacteria belonging to Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria and members of the eukaryotes Bacillariophyceae and Phaeophyceae. Polymers sampled from the sea surface mainly comprised polyethylene, polystyrene and polypropylene particles. Variation within plastisphere communities on different polymer types was observed, but communities were primarily dominated by Cyanobacteria. This research reveals that the composition of plastisphere microbial communities in marine waters varies with season, geographical location and plastic substrate type.

  15. Spatial and seasonal variation in diversity and structure of microbial biofilms on marine plastics in Northern European waters.

    PubMed

    Oberbeckmann, Sonja; Loeder, Martin G J; Gerdts, Gunnar; Osborn, A Mark

    2014-11-01

    Plastic pollution is now recognised as a major threat to marine environments and marine biota. Recent research highlights that diverse microbial species are found to colonise plastic surfaces (the plastisphere) within marine waters. Here, we investigate how the structure and diversity of marine plastisphere microbial community vary with respect to season, location and plastic substrate type. We performed a 6-week exposure experiment with polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles in the North Sea (UK) as well as sea surface sampling of plastic polymers in Northern European waters. Scanning electron microscopy revealed diverse plastisphere communities comprising prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and sequencing analysis revealed that plastisphere microbial communities on PET fragments varied both with season and location and comprised of bacteria belonging to Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria and members of the eukaryotes Bacillariophyceae and Phaeophyceae. Polymers sampled from the sea surface mainly comprised polyethylene, polystyrene and polypropylene particles. Variation within plastisphere communities on different polymer types was observed, but communities were primarily dominated by Cyanobacteria. This research reveals that the composition of plastisphere microbial communities in marine waters varies with season, geographical location and plastic substrate type. PMID:25109340

  16. Biodiversity of marine scuticociliates (Protozoa, Ciliophora) from China: Description of seven morphotypes including a new species, Philaster sinensis spec. nov.

    PubMed

    Pan, Xuming; Yi, Zhenzhen; Li, Jiqiu; Ma, Honggang; Al-Farraj, Saleh A; Al-Rasheid, Khaled A S

    2015-04-01

    Seven marine scuticociliates, Philaster sinensis spec. nov., Pseudocohnilembus hargisi Evans and Thompson, 1964. J. Protozool. 11, 344, Parauronema virginianum Thompson, 1967. J. Protozool. 14, 731, Uronemella filificum (Kahl, 1931. Tierwelt. Dtl. 21, 181) Song and Wilbert, 2002. Zool. Anz. 241, 317, Cohnilembus verminus Kahl, 1931, Parauronema longum Song, 1995. J. Ocean Univ. China. 25, 461 and Glauconema trihymene Thompson, 1966. J. Protozool. 13, 393, collected from Chinese coastal waters, were investigated using live observations, silver impregnation methods, and, in the case of the new species, SSU rDNA sequencing. Philaster sinensis spec. nov. can be recognized by the combination of the following characters: body cylindrical, approximately 130-150 × 35-55 μm in vivo; apical end slightly to distinctly pointed, posterior generally rounded; 19-22 somatic kineties; M1 triangular, consisting of 13 or 14 transverse rows of kinetosomes; M2 comprising 10-12 longitudinal rows; CVP positioned at end of SK1; marine habitat. We also provide improved diagnoses for Pseudocohnilembus hargisi, Parauronema virginianum, Uronemella filificum and Parauronema longum based on their original descriptions as well as the present work. Phylogenetic analyses support the monophyly of the genus Philaster.

  17. Marine reserves: size and age do matter.

    PubMed

    Claudet, Joachim; Osenberg, Craig W; Benedetti-Cecchi, Lisandro; Domenici, Paolo; García-Charton, José-Antonio; Pérez-Ruzafa, Angel; Badalamenti, Fabio; Bayle-Sempere, Just; Brito, Alberto; Bulleri, Fabio; Culioli, Jean-Michel; Dimech, Mark; Falcón, Jesús M; Guala, Ivan; Milazzo, Marco; Sánchez-Meca, Julio; Somerfield, Paul J; Stobart, Ben; Vandeperre, Frédéric; Valle, Carlos; Planes, Serge

    2008-05-01

    Marine reserves are widely used throughout the world to prevent overfishing and conserve biodiversity, but uncertainties remain about their optimal design. The effects of marine reserves are heterogeneous. Despite theoretical findings, empirical studies have previously found no effect of size on the effectiveness of marine reserves in protecting commercial fish stocks. Using 58 datasets from 19 European marine reserves, we show that reserve size and age do matter: Increasing the size of the no-take zone increases the density of commercial fishes within the reserve compared with outside; whereas the size of the buffer zone has the opposite effect. Moreover, positive effects of marine reserve on commercial fish species and species richness are linked to the time elapsed since the establishment of the protection scheme. The reserve size-dependency of the response to protection has strong implications for the spatial management of coastal areas because marine reserves are used for spatial zoning.

  18. Geo-Seas - a pan-European infrastructure for the management of marine geological and geophysical data.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glaves, Helen; Graham, Colin

    2010-05-01

    Geo-Seas - a pan-European infrastructure for the management of marine geological and geophysical data. Helen Glaves1 and Colin Graham2 on behalf of the Geo-Seas consortium The Geo-Seas project will create a network of twenty six European marine geoscience data centres from seventeen coastal countries including six from the Baltic Sea area. This will be achieved through the development of a pan-European infrastructure for the exchange of marine geoscientific data. Researchers will be able to locate and access harmonised and federated marine geological and geophysical datasets and data products held by the data centres through the Geo-Seas data portal, using a common data catalogue. The new infrastructure, an expansion of the exisiting SeaDataNet, will create an infrastructure covering oceanographic and marine geoscientific data. New data products and services will be developed following consultations with users on their current and future research requirements. Common data standards will be implemented across all of the data centres and other geological and geophysical organisations will be encouraged to adopt the protocols, standards and tools which are developed as part of the Geo-Seas project. Oceanographic and marine data include a wide range of variables, an important category of which are the geological and geophysical data sets. This data includes raw observational and analytical data as well as derived data products from seabed sediment samples, boreholes, geophysical surveys (seismic, gravity etc) and sidescan sonar surveys. All of which are essential in order to produce a complete interpretation of seabed geology. Despite there being a large volume of geological and geophysical data available for the marine environment it is currently very difficult to use these datasets in an integrated way between organisations due to different nomenclatures, formats, scales and coordinate systems being used within different organisations and also within different

  19. Progress in marine science supported by European joint coastal observation systems: The JERICO-RI research infrastructure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puillat, I.; Farcy, P.; Durand, D.; Karlson, B.; Petihakis, G.; Seppälä, J.; Sparnocchia, S.

    2016-10-01

    Coastal systems are of the most productive ones although they are the most impacted by direct pressures from human activities. These ecosystems exhibit a high level of complexity with many different and interconnected processes operating at various spatial and temporal scales and providing a range of ecosystem services. Coastal observations are tremendous importance in order to understand those complex marine processes. Moreover, they support the use and further development of coastal ocean numerical models, including physical models and coupled physical-biogeochemical models. Coastal data have also many applications in the domain of coastal engineering such as for instance in the design of a coastal structure, or in the prevention of extreme events (e.g. flooding). As a consequence, the number of marine observing systems has quickly increased around European coastal seas, under the pressure of both monitoring requirements and marine research. Present demands for such observing systems include reliable, high-quality and comprehensive observations of key environmental parameters, automated platforms and sensors systems for continuous observations, as well as autonomy over long time periods. In-situ data collected can be combined with remote sensing and/or models to detect, understand and/or forecast the most crucial coastal processes over extensive areas within the various marine environments.

  20. Parallel genetic divergence among coastal-marine ecotype pairs of European anchovy explained by differential introgression after secondary contact.

    PubMed

    Le Moan, A; Gagnaire, P-A; Bonhomme, F

    2016-07-01

    Ecophenotypic differentiation among replicate ecotype pairs within a species complex is often attributed to independent outcomes of parallel divergence driven by adaptation to similar environmental contrasts. However, the extent to which parallel phenotypic and genetic divergence patterns have emerged independently is increasingly questioned by population genomic studies. Here, we document the extent of genetic differentiation within and among two geographic replicates of the coastal and marine ecotypes of the European anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus) gathered from Atlantic and Mediterranean locations. Using a genome-wide data set of RAD-derived SNPs, we show that habitat type (marine vs. coastal) is the most important component of genetic differentiation among populations of anchovy. By analysing the joint allele frequency spectrum of each coastal-marine ecotype pair, we show that genomic divergence patterns between ecotypes can be explained by a postglacial secondary contact following a long period of allopatric isolation (c. 300 kyrs). We found strong support for a model including heterogeneous migration among loci, suggesting that secondary gene flow has eroded past differentiation at different rates across the genome. Markers experiencing reduced introgression exhibited strongly correlated differentiation levels among Atlantic and Mediterranean regions. These results support that partial reproductive isolation and parallel genetic differentiation among replicate pairs of anchovy ecotypes are largely due to a common divergence history prior to secondary contact. They moreover provide comprehensive insights into the origin of a surprisingly strong fine-scale genetic structuring in a high gene flow marine fish, which should improve stock management and conservation actions.

  1. Marine legislation--the ultimate 'horrendogram': international law, European directives & national implementation.

    PubMed

    Boyes, Suzanne J; Elliott, Michael

    2014-09-15

    The EU is a pre-eminent player in sustainable development, adopting more than 200 pieces of legislation that have direct repercussions for marine environmental policy and management. Over five decades, measures have aimed to protect the marine environment by tackling the impact of human activities, but maritime affairs have been dealt with by separate sectoral policies without fully integrating all relevant sectors. Such compartmentalisation has resulted in a patchwork of EU legislation and resultant national legislation leading to a piecemeal approach to marine protection. These are superimposed on international obligations emanating from UN and other bodies and are presented here as complex 'horrendograms' showing the complexity across vertical governance. These horrendograms have surprised marine experts despite them acknowledging the many uses and users of the marine environment. Encouragingly since 2000, the evolution in EU policy has progressed to more holistic directives and here we give an overview of this change.

  2. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

    The extinction of farm animals and crops is rarely brought up during discussions of endangered species and biodiversity; however, the loss of diversity in crops and livestock threatens the sustainability of agriculture. Presents three activities: (1) "The Colors of Diversity"; (2) "Biodiversity among Animals"; and (3) "Heirloom Plants." Discusses…

  3. Biodiversity Prospecting.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sittenfeld, Ana; Lovejoy, Annie

    1994-01-01

    Examines the use of biodiversity prospecting as a method for tropical countries to value biodiversity and contribute to conservation upkeep costs. Discusses the first agreement between a public interest organization and pharmaceutical company for the extraction of plant and animal materials in Costa Rica. (LZ)

  4. Biodiversity tracks temperature over time

    PubMed Central

    Mayhew, Peter J.; Bell, Mark A.; Benton, Timothy G.; McGowan, Alistair J.

    2012-01-01

    The geographic distribution of life on Earth supports a general pattern of increase in biodiversity with increasing temperature. However, some previous analyses of the 540-million-year Phanerozoic fossil record found a contrary relationship, with paleodiversity declining when the planet warms. These contradictory findings are hard to reconcile theoretically. We analyze marine invertebrate biodiversity patterns for the Phanerozoic Eon while controlling for sampling effort. This control appears to reverse the temporal association between temperature and biodiversity, such that taxonomic richness increases, not decreases, with temperature. Increasing temperatures also predict extinction and origination rates, alongside other abiotic and biotic predictor variables. These results undermine previous reports of a negative biodiversity-temperature relationship through time, which we attribute to paleontological sampling biases. Our findings suggest a convergence of global scale macroevolutionary and macroecological patterns for the biodiversity-temperature relationship. PMID:22949697

  5. Mapping Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC.

    This document features a lesson plan that examines how maps help scientists protect biodiversity and how plants and animals are adapted to specific ecoregions by comparing biome, ecoregion, and habitat. Samples of instruction and assessment are included. (KHR)

  6. Backyard Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Sarah S.

    2002-01-01

    Describes a field trip experience for the Earth Odyssey project for elementary school students focusing on biodiversity. Introduces the concept of diversity, field work, species richness, and the connection between animals and their habitat. (YDS)

  7. Verifying a biotope classification using benthic communities--an analysis towards the implementation of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

    PubMed

    Schiele, Kerstin S; Darr, Alexander; Zettler, Michael L

    2014-01-15

    The HELCOM Red List biotopes project proposed a Baltic Sea wide classification consisting of six levels: The HELCOM Underwater biotopes/habitats classification system (HELCOM HUB). We present a case study from the south-western Baltic Sea where we tested the applicability of this system. More than 500 sampling stations were analyzed regarding macrozoobenthic communities and their linkage to environmental parameters. Based on the analyses of biotic and abiotic data, 21 groups were assigned to 13 biotopes of the classification. For some biotopes varying states of communities were recognized. Even though not all abiotic parameters are considered directly in the hierarchy of the classification in general, all soft-bottom communities could be allocated to a corresponding biotope. The application of the HELCOM HUB for the south-western Baltic Sea is feasible, in regard to the implementation of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive as well as the Baltic Sea Action Plan.

  8. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics.

    PubMed

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J; de Santana, Charles N; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-01-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics. PMID:27151103

  9. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics.

    PubMed

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J; de Santana, Charles N; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-05-06

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics.

  10. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F.; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J.; de Santana, Charles N.; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R.; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-01-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics. PMID:27151103

  11. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F.; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J.; de Santana, Charles N.; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R.; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-05-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics.

  12. Biodiversity Performs!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC.

    This document features a lesson plan in which students work in teams to act out different ecosystem services, describe several free services that biodiversity provides to human, and explain how these services make life on earth possible. Samples of instruction and assessment are included. (KHR)

  13. PROTECTING BIODIVERSITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    At present, over 40% of the earth's land surface has been converted from its natural state to one dominated by human activities such as agriculture and development. The destruction and degradation of natural habitats has been clearly linked to the loss of biodiversity. Biodiver...

  14. Biodiversity Management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biodiversity management is summarized for the global chickpea (Cicer arietinum) crop germplasm held in genebanks as ex situ collections. Morphological diversity is presented with the range of variation reported from the global collections. The largest collections are held at international agricult...

  15. The use of the shanny Lipophrys pholis for pollution monitoring: a new sentinel species for the northwestern European marine ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Lima, D; Santos, M M; Ferreira, A M; Micaelo, C; Reis-Henriques, M A

    2008-01-01

    The contamination of aquatic ecosystems by organic contaminants such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is a matter of great concern. Mussels have been extensively used as sentinel species in a large number of monitoring programs. However, the use of bivalves as the sole species has some limitations, because they are not as responsive as fish to Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor agonists. Hence, for many marine areas, there is the need to validate new sentinel fish species that can be used in the assessment of pollution by organic contaminants. The shanny Lipophrys pholis is an intertidal fish that combines many characteristics required in a sentinel species: is abundant and easy to catch, has a wide geographical distribution and restrict home range. After larvae recruitment to the intertidal rocky shores, they remain in the same area for the rest of the life-cycle, thus reflecting local pollutants exposure. In order to evaluate the species sensitivity to organic contaminants under field conditions, L. pholis were collected at six sites reflecting different degrees of anthropogenic contamination. The induction of two biomarkers extensively validated in the assessment of PAHs contamination ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase activity (EROD) and Fluorescent Aromatic Compounds (FACs) was evaluated. In parallel, mussels were collected at the same locations and levels of 16 PAHs and selected heavy metals determined. Overall, the specimens collected in the urban areas showed a significant induction of EROD and FACs (up to a six-fold induction) if compared with the reference sites. Additionally, a positive correlation was observed between the biomarkers and PAHs levels in mussel tissues. Even though further validation is currently in progress, the available data indicate that L. pholis is responsive to organic contaminants such as PAHs, suggesting its future integration in monitoring programmes designed to evaluate the presence of these contaminants in European marine ecosystems.

  16. Education and biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Ahearn, S.K.

    1988-01-01

    This study focuses on the importance of developing educational programs about biological diversity in order to preserve it more effectively. The study is divided into two parts. Part I is a needs assessment consisting of the results of: (1) a survey and checklist of land management and education/interpretive practices in natural areas of the United States, (2) a study of ecology research reports, (3) interviews of scientists, land managers, and environmental educators in natural areas, and (4) an analysis of popular published environmental-education activity and curriculum guides. From this, a set of needs was identified for purposes of planning activities for teaching about biodiversity in natural areas. Part II consists of sample activities that represent ways to incorporate current knowledge of biodiversity into education/interpretive programming on nature preserves, parks, and wildlife refuges. The ideas focus mainly on developing an understanding of what biodiversity looks like, from the scale of the habitat to the landscape, and from the genetic level to the ecosystem level. The activities are grouped according to six major topics: open space, marine resources, energy, solid waste, surface waters, and freshwater wetlands, and groundwater.

  17. Spatially structured populations with a low level of cryptic diversity in European marine Gastrotricha.

    PubMed

    Kieneke, Alexander; Martínez Arbizu, Pedro M; Fontaneto, Diego

    2012-03-01

    Species of the marine meiofauna such as Gastrotricha are known to lack dispersal stages and are thus assumed to have low dispersal ability and low levels of gene flow between populations. Yet, most species are widely distributed, and this creates a paradox. To shed light on this apparent paradox, we test (i) whether such wide distribution may be due to misidentification and lumping of cryptic species with restricted distributions and (ii) whether spatial structures exist for the phylogeography of gastrotrichs. As a model, we used the genus Turbanella in NW Europe. DNA taxonomy using a mitochondrial and a nuclear marker supports distinctness of four traditional species (Turbanella ambronensis, T. bocqueti, T. mustela and T. cornuta) and provides evidence for two cryptic species within T. hyalina. An effect of geography on the within-species genetic structure is indeed present, with the potential for understanding colonization processes and for performing phylogeographic inference from microscopic animals. On the other hand, the occurrence of widely distributed haplotypes indicates long-distance dispersal as well, despite the assumed low dispersal ability of gastrotrichs. PMID:22257178

  18. Spatially structured populations with a low level of cryptic diversity in European marine Gastrotricha.

    PubMed

    Kieneke, Alexander; Martínez Arbizu, Pedro M; Fontaneto, Diego

    2012-03-01

    Species of the marine meiofauna such as Gastrotricha are known to lack dispersal stages and are thus assumed to have low dispersal ability and low levels of gene flow between populations. Yet, most species are widely distributed, and this creates a paradox. To shed light on this apparent paradox, we test (i) whether such wide distribution may be due to misidentification and lumping of cryptic species with restricted distributions and (ii) whether spatial structures exist for the phylogeography of gastrotrichs. As a model, we used the genus Turbanella in NW Europe. DNA taxonomy using a mitochondrial and a nuclear marker supports distinctness of four traditional species (Turbanella ambronensis, T. bocqueti, T. mustela and T. cornuta) and provides evidence for two cryptic species within T. hyalina. An effect of geography on the within-species genetic structure is indeed present, with the potential for understanding colonization processes and for performing phylogeographic inference from microscopic animals. On the other hand, the occurrence of widely distributed haplotypes indicates long-distance dispersal as well, despite the assumed low dispersal ability of gastrotrichs.

  19. Glacial history of the European marine mussels Mytilus, inferred from distribution of mitochondrial DNA lineages.

    PubMed

    Smietanka, B; Burzyński, A; Hummel, H; Wenne, R

    2014-09-01

    Mussels of the genus Mytilus have been used to assess the circumglacial phylogeography of the intertidal zone. These mussels are representative components of the intertidal zone and have rapidly evolving mitochondrial DNA, suitable for high resolution phylogeographic analyses. In Europe, the three Mytilus species currently share mitochondrial haplotypes, owing to the cases of extensive genetic introgression. Genetic diversity of Mytilus edulis, Mytilus trossulus and Mytilus galloprovincialis was studied using a 900-bp long part of the most variable fragment of the control region from one of their two mitochondrial genomes. To this end, 985 specimens were sampled along the European coasts, at sites ranging from the Black Sea to the White Sea. The relevant DNA fragments were amplified, sequenced and analyzed. Contrary to the earlier findings, our coalescence and nested cladistics results show that only a single M. edulis glacial refugium existed in the Atlantic. Despite that, the species survived the glaciation retaining much of its diversity. Unsurprisingly, M. galloprovincialis survived in the Mediterranean Sea. In a relatively short time period, around the climatic optimum at 10 ky ago, the species underwent rapid expansion coupled with population differentiation. Following the expansion, further contemporary gene flow between populations was limited. PMID:24619178

  20. Glacial history of the European marine mussels Mytilus, inferred from distribution of mitochondrial DNA lineages

    PubMed Central

    Śmietanka, B; Burzyński, A; Hummel, H; Wenne, R

    2014-01-01

    Mussels of the genus Mytilus have been used to assess the circumglacial phylogeography of the intertidal zone. These mussels are representative components of the intertidal zone and have rapidly evolving mitochondrial DNA, suitable for high resolution phylogeographic analyses. In Europe, the three Mytilus species currently share mitochondrial haplotypes, owing to the cases of extensive genetic introgression. Genetic diversity of Mytilus edulis, Mytilus trossulus and Mytilus galloprovincialis was studied using a 900-bp long part of the most variable fragment of the control region from one of their two mitochondrial genomes. To this end, 985 specimens were sampled along the European coasts, at sites ranging from the Black Sea to the White Sea. The relevant DNA fragments were amplified, sequenced and analyzed. Contrary to the earlier findings, our coalescence and nested cladistics results show that only a single M. edulis glacial refugium existed in the Atlantic. Despite that, the species survived the glaciation retaining much of its diversity. Unsurprisingly, M. galloprovincialis survived in the Mediterranean Sea. In a relatively short time period, around the climatic optimum at 10 ky ago, the species underwent rapid expansion coupled with population differentiation. Following the expansion, further contemporary gene flow between populations was limited. PMID:24619178

  1. Glacial history of the European marine mussels Mytilus, inferred from distribution of mitochondrial DNA lineages.

    PubMed

    Smietanka, B; Burzyński, A; Hummel, H; Wenne, R

    2014-09-01

    Mussels of the genus Mytilus have been used to assess the circumglacial phylogeography of the intertidal zone. These mussels are representative components of the intertidal zone and have rapidly evolving mitochondrial DNA, suitable for high resolution phylogeographic analyses. In Europe, the three Mytilus species currently share mitochondrial haplotypes, owing to the cases of extensive genetic introgression. Genetic diversity of Mytilus edulis, Mytilus trossulus and Mytilus galloprovincialis was studied using a 900-bp long part of the most variable fragment of the control region from one of their two mitochondrial genomes. To this end, 985 specimens were sampled along the European coasts, at sites ranging from the Black Sea to the White Sea. The relevant DNA fragments were amplified, sequenced and analyzed. Contrary to the earlier findings, our coalescence and nested cladistics results show that only a single M. edulis glacial refugium existed in the Atlantic. Despite that, the species survived the glaciation retaining much of its diversity. Unsurprisingly, M. galloprovincialis survived in the Mediterranean Sea. In a relatively short time period, around the climatic optimum at 10 ky ago, the species underwent rapid expansion coupled with population differentiation. Following the expansion, further contemporary gene flow between populations was limited.

  2. Beyond Biodiversity: Fish Metagenomes

    PubMed Central

    Ardura, Alba; Planes, Serge; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity and intra-specific genetic diversity are interrelated and determine the potential of a community to survive and evolve. Both are considered together in Prokaryote communities treated as metagenomes or ensembles of functional variants beyond species limits. Many factors alter biodiversity in higher Eukaryote communities, and human exploitation can be one of the most important for some groups of plants and animals. For example, fisheries can modify both biodiversity and genetic diversity (intra specific). Intra-specific diversity can be drastically altered by overfishing. Intense fishing pressure on one stock may imply extinction of some genetic variants and subsequent loss of intra-specific diversity. The objective of this study was to apply a metagenome approach to fish communities and explore its value for rapid evaluation of biodiversity and genetic diversity at community level. Here we have applied the metagenome approach employing the Barcoding target gene COI as a model sequence in catch from four very different fish assemblages exploited by fisheries: freshwater communities from the Amazon River and northern Spanish rivers, and marine communities from the Cantabric and Mediterranean seas. Treating all sequences obtained from each regional catch as a biological unit (exploited community) we found that metagenomic diversity indices of the Amazonian catch sample here examined were lower than expected. Reduced diversity could be explained, at least partially, by overexploitation of the fish community that had been independently estimated by other methods. We propose using a metagenome approach for estimating diversity in Eukaryote communities and early evaluating genetic variation losses at multi-species level. PMID:21829636

  3. Beyond biodiversity: fish metagenomes.

    PubMed

    Ardura, Alba; Planes, Serge; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity and intra-specific genetic diversity are interrelated and determine the potential of a community to survive and evolve. Both are considered together in Prokaryote communities treated as metagenomes or ensembles of functional variants beyond species limits.Many factors alter biodiversity in higher Eukaryote communities, and human exploitation can be one of the most important for some groups of plants and animals. For example, fisheries can modify both biodiversity and genetic diversity (intra specific). Intra-specific diversity can be drastically altered by overfishing. Intense fishing pressure on one stock may imply extinction of some genetic variants and subsequent loss of intra-specific diversity. The objective of this study was to apply a metagenome approach to fish communities and explore its value for rapid evaluation of biodiversity and genetic diversity at community level. Here we have applied the metagenome approach employing the barcoding target gene coi as a model sequence in catch from four very different fish assemblages exploited by fisheries: freshwater communities from the Amazon River and northern Spanish rivers, and marine communities from the Cantabric and Mediterranean seas.Treating all sequences obtained from each regional catch as a biological unit (exploited community) we found that metagenomic diversity indices of the Amazonian catch sample here examined were lower than expected. Reduced diversity could be explained, at least partially, by overexploitation of the fish community that had been independently estimated by other methods.We propose using a metagenome approach for estimating diversity in Eukaryote communities and early evaluating genetic variation losses at multi-species level.

  4. Marine biological valuation mapping of the Basque continental shelf (Bay of Biscay), within the context of marine spatial planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascual, Marta; Borja, Angel; Eede, Sarah Vanden; Deneudt, Klaas; Vincx, Magda; Galparsoro, Ibon; Legorburu, Irati

    2011-11-01

    Marine Biological Valuation (BV) has increased in importance in recent years, due to the need to establish accurate maps of biodiversity value. However, there have been few exercises undertaken in Southern Europe, in putting a value on marine biodiversity whilst at the same time looking at several biological components. This paper presents the complete Biological Valuation Map (BVM) of the Basque continental shelf and estuaries, using the methodology developed for the Belgian Continental Shelf. It includes all available biological data (zooplankton, macroalgae, macrobenthos, demersal fish, seabirds and cetaceans), from 2003 to 2010. BVMs aim to compile all available biological and ecological information for a selected study area, allocating an integrated intrinsic biological value to the subzones within the study area. Here, the results highlight specific areas (such as Jaizkibel or Cap Breton Canyon), as having high or very high integrated BV, using all of the components. Furthermore, some biodiversity 'hotspots' have been identified, according to a specific ecosystem component (e.g. mid-parts of the Oka estuary, for macroalgae, and the Cap Breton Canyon, for cetaceans). Comparison with the results obtained from other European countries, and with previously high-importance delimited zones within the study area, showed similar spatial trends and patterns. Therefore, the objectives of this contribution are: (i) to analyse and establish a spatial ecological value map of the continental shelf of the Basque Country (southern Bay of Biscay), using present BV methods; (ii) to compare the results obtained to other European countries, and (iii) to explore the application of these results to the Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) and the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) requirements. This map can serve as a baseline for future MSP and can also be used for the determination of the environmental status, within the MSFD, for the qualitative descriptor 1

  5. Using remote sensing as a support to the implementation of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive in SW Portugal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cristina, Sónia; Icely, John; Costa Goela, Priscila; Angel DelValls, Tomás; Newton, Alice

    2015-10-01

    The exclusive economic zones (EEZ) of coastal countries are coming under increasing pressure from various economic sectors such as fishing, aquaculture, shipping and energy production. In Europe, there is a policy to expand the maritime economic sector without damaging the environment by ensuring that these activities comply with legally binding Directives, such as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). However, monitoring an extensive maritime area is a logistical and economic challenge. Remote sensing is considered one of the most cost effective methods for providing the spatial and temporal environmental data that will be necessary for the effective implementation of the MSFD. However, there is still a concern about the uncertainties associated with remote sensed products. This study has tested how a specific satellite product can contribute to the monitoring of a MSFD Descriptor for "good environmental status" (GES). The results show that the quality of the remote sensing product Algal Pigment Index 1 (API 1) from the MEdium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) sensor of the European Space Agency for ocean colour products can be effectively validated with in situ data from three stations off the SW Iberian Peninsula. The validation results show good agreement between the MERIS API 1 and the in situ data for the two more offshore stations, with a higher coefficient of determination (R2) of 0.79, and with lower uncertainties for the average relative percentage difference (RPD) of 24.6% and 27.9% and a root mean square error (RMSE) of 0.40 and 0.38 for Stations B and C, respectively. Near to the coast, Station A has the lowest R2 of 0.63 and the highest uncertainties with an RPD of 112.9% and a RMSE of 1.00. It is also the station most affected by adjacency effects from the land: when the Improved Contrast between Ocean and Land processor (ICOL) is applied the R2 increases to 0.77 and there is a 30% reduction in the uncertainties estimated by RPD. The

  6. Role and goals of the EUR-OCEANS Consortium - Bringing marine scientists priorities and strategies to the European research planning agenda.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cury, Philippe; Baisnée, Pierre-François

    2010-05-01

    The EUR-OCEANS Consortium is the follow-up structure of the homonym European Network of Excellence (NoE; 2005-2008, FP6 contract number 511106). It is a scientific network, benefiting from and relying upon the institutional commitment of the 27 research performing organisations forming its core (paying) membership. It aims at the long-term harmonization of European research efforts related to ocean ecosystems undergoing anthropogenic and natural forcing. More specifically, its objectives are to facilitate and promote: (1) top-level scientific research on the impacts of anthropogenic and natural forcing on ocean ecosystems, fostering collaborations across the European Research Area; (2) the optimal use of any shared technical infrastructures and scientific facilities; and (3) activities to spread excellence, such as the training of scientific personnel and students, or knowledge dissemination towards the general public and socio-economic users. A particular focus is put during the first scientific coordination mandate on the building of scenarios for marine ecosystems under anthropogenic and natural forcing in the XXI Century, and on the improvement of the science-policy interface. Through calls for projects and networking activities, the Consortium seeks to favour the emergence of coordinated projects on key hot topics on one hand, and the crystallisation of scientific priorities and strategies that could serve as input to ERA-NETs, ESFRI, Joint Programming Initiatives and European Research Planning actors in general. While being an active standalone structure, the Consortium is also engaged in the Euromarine FP7 project (submitted) aiming at the definition of a common coordinating or integrating structure for the three follow-up entities of FP6 marine science NoEs (Marine Genomics Europe, MarBEF, EUR-OCEANS). The 2009-2011 strategy and activity plan of EUR-OCEANS will be presented and the involvement of EUR-OCEANS members in other key projects or programmes will

  7. SeaDataNet : Pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management - Project objectives, structure and components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maudire, G.; Maillard, C.; Fichaut, M.; Manzella, G.; Schaap, D. M. A.

    2009-04-01

    SeaDataNet : Pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management Project objectives, structure and components G. Maudire (1), C. Maillard (1), G. Manzella (2), M. Fichaut (1), D.M.A. Schaap (3), E. Iona (4) and the SeaDataNet consortium. (1) IFREMER, Brest, France (Gilbert.Maudire@ifremer.fr), (2) ENEA, La Spezia, Italy, (3) Mariene Informatie Service 'MARIS', Voorburg, The Netherlands, (4) Hellenic Centre for Marine Research-HCMR, Anavyssos, Greece. Since a large part of the earth population lives near the oceans or carries on activities directly or indirectly linked to the seas (fishery and aquaculture, exploitation of sea bottom resources, international shipping, tourism), knowledge of oceans is of primary importance for security and economy. However, observation and monitoring of the oceans remains difficult and expensive even if real improvements have been achieved using research vessels and submersibles, satellites and automatic observatories like buoys, floats and seafloor observatories transmitting directly to the shore using global transmission systems. More than 600 governmental or private organizations are active in observation of seas bordering Europe, but European oceanographic data are fragmented, not always validated and not always easily accessible. That highlights the need of international collaboration to tend toward a comprehensive view of ocean mechanisms, resources and changes. SeaDataNet is an Integrated research Infrastructure Initiative (I3) in European Union Framework Program 6 (2006 - 2011) to provide the data management system adapted both to the fragmented observation systems and to the users need for an integrated access to data, meta-data, products and services. Its major objectives are to: - encourage long-term archiving at national level to secure ocean data taking into account that all the observations made in the variable oceanic environment can never be remade if they are lost; - promote best practices for data

  8. Biodiversity informatics.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Norman F

    2007-01-01

    Biodiversity informatics is an emerging field that applies information management tools to the management and analysis of species-occurrence, taxonomic character, and image data. A wide and growing range of tools is available for both curators and researchers. The development and implementation of formal data exchange standards and query protocols have made it possible to integrate data holdings from collections around the world. The current technological environment is summarized; protocols, standards, and tools for data management, sharing, and integration are reviewed; and methods and tools for analyzing species-occurrence and character data are examined. Direct access to primary data and imagery has the power to transform the means by which taxonomy is practiced and its results disseminated to the general community.

  9. Benthic habitat mapping on the Basque continental shelf (SE Bay of Biscay) and its application to the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galparsoro, Ibon; Rodríguez, José Germán; Menchaca, Iratxe; Quincoces, Iñaki; Garmendia, Joxe Mikel; Borja, Ángel

    2015-06-01

    Benthic habitats on the Basque continental shelf were mapped based on multibeam echosounder surveys, grab sampling, video surveys and oceanographic monitoring. A total area of 2302 km2 was classified according to the European Nature Information System (EUNIS) hierarchical classification. Almost 50% of the area corresponded to rock and other hard substrata and the other 50% corresponded to soft bottoms. The biotic composition of several areas was significantly different from the EUNIS habitat classes described previously; therefore, we propose a total of 13 new classes. The habitat mapping has contributed to improving the knowledge and application of several criteria and indicators used to assess environmental status in the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive in relation to the biological diversity descriptors, such as non-indigenous species and seafloor integrity. It is also useful for other descriptors and for developing the sampling design.

  10. SeaDataNet - Pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management: Unified access to distributed data sets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaap, D. M. A.; Maudire, G.

    2009-04-01

    SeaDataNet is an Integrated research Infrastructure Initiative (I3) in EU FP6 (2006 - 2011) to provide the data management system adapted both to the fragmented observation system and the users need for an integrated access to data, meta-data, products and services. Therefore SeaDataNet insures the long term archiving of the large number of multidisciplinary data (i.e. temperature, salinity current, sea level, chemical, physical and biological properties) collected by many different sensors installed on board of research vessels, satellite and the various platforms of the marine observing system. The SeaDataNet project started in 2006, but builds upon earlier data management infrastructure projects, undertaken over a period of 20 years by an expanding network of oceanographic data centres from the countries around all European seas. Its predecessor project Sea-Search had a strict focus on metadata. SeaDataNet maintains significant interest in the further development of the metadata infrastructure, but its primary objective is the provision of easy data access and generic data products. SeaDataNet is a distributed infrastructure that provides transnational access to marine data, meta-data, products and services through 40 interconnected Trans National Data Access Platforms (TAP) from 35 countries around the Black Sea, Mediterranean, North East Atlantic, North Sea, Baltic and Arctic regions. These include: National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODC's) Satellite Data Centres. Furthermore the SeaDataNet consortium comprises a number of expert modelling centres, SME's experts in IT, and 3 international bodies (ICES, IOC and JRC). Planning: The SeaDataNet project is delivering and operating the infrastructure in 3 versions: Version 0: maintenance and further development of the metadata systems developed by the Sea-Search project plus the development of a new metadata system for indexing and accessing to individual data objects managed by the SeaDataNet data centres. This

  11. Does conservation on farmland contribute to halting the biodiversity decline?

    PubMed

    Kleijn, David; Rundlöf, Maj; Scheper, Jeroen; Smith, Henrik G; Tscharntke, Teja

    2011-09-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline, despite the implementation of international conservation conventions and measures. To counteract biodiversity loss, it is pivotal to know how conservation actions affect biodiversity trends. Focussing on European farmland species, we review what is known about the impact of conservation initiatives on biodiversity. We argue that the effects of conservation are a function of conservation-induced ecological contrast, agricultural land-use intensity and landscape context. We find that, to date, only a few studies have linked local conservation effects to national biodiversity trends. It is therefore unknown how the extensive European agri-environmental budget for conservation on farmland contributes to the policy objectives to halt biodiversity decline. Based on this review, we identify new research directions addressing this important knowledge gap.

  12. SeaDataNet II - Second phase of developments for the pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaap, Dick M. A.; Fichaut, Michele

    2013-04-01

    The second phase of the project SeaDataNet started on October 2011 for another 4 years with the aim to upgrade the SeaDataNet infrastructure built during previous years. The numbers of the project are quite impressive: 59 institutions from 35 different countries are involved. In particular, 45 data centers are sharing human and financial resources in a common efforts to sustain an operationally robust and state-of-the-art Pan-European infrastructure for providing up-to-date and high quality access to ocean and marine metadata, data and data products. The main objective of SeaDataNet II is to improve operations and to progress towards an efficient data management infrastructure able to handle the diversity and large volume of data collected via the Pan-European oceanographic fleet and the new observation systems, both in real-time and delayed mode. The infrastructure is based on a semi-distributed system that incorporates and enhance the existing NODCs network. SeaDataNet aims at serving users from science, environmental management, policy making, and economical sectors. Better integrated data systems are vital for these users to achieve improved scientific research and results, to support marine environmental and integrated coastal zone management, to establish indicators of Good Environmental Status for sea basins, and to support offshore industry developments, shipping, fisheries, and other economic activities. The recent EU communication "MARINE KNOWLEDGE 2020 - marine data and observation for smart and sustainable growth" states that the creation of marine knowledge begins with observation of the seas and oceans. In addition, directives, policies, science programmes require reporting of the state of the seas and oceans in an integrated pan-European manner: of particular note are INSPIRE, MSFD, WISE-Marine and GMES Marine Core Service. These underpin the importance of a well functioning marine and ocean data management infrastructure. SeaDataNet is now one of

  13. Conserving biodiversity in a human-dominated world: degradation of marine sessile communities within a protected area with conflicting human uses.

    PubMed

    Parravicini, Valeriano; Micheli, Fiorenza; Montefalcone, Monica; Morri, Carla; Villa, Elisa; Castellano, Michela; Povero, Paolo; Bianchi, Carlo Nike

    2013-01-01

    Conservation research aims at understanding whether present protection schemes are adequate for the maintenance of ecosystems structure and function across time. We evaluated long-term variation in rocky reef communities by comparing sites surveyed in 1993 and again in 2008. This research took place in Tigullio Gulf, an emblematic case study where various conservation measures, including a marine protected area, have been implemented to manage multiple human uses. Contrary to our prediction that protection should have favored ecosystem stability, we found that communities subjected to conservation measures (especially within the marine protected area) exhibited the greatest variation toward architectural complexity loss. Between 1993 and 2008, chronic anthropogenic pressures (especially organic load) that had already altered unprotected sites in 1993 expanded their influence into protected areas. This expansion of human pressure likely explains our observed changes in the benthic communities. Our results suggest that adaptive ecosystem-based management (EBM), that is management taking into account human interactions, informed by continuous monitoring, is needed in order to attempt reversing the current trend towards less architecturally complex communities. Protected areas are not sufficient to stop ecosystem alteration by pressures coming from outside. Monitoring, and consequent management actions, should therefore extend to cover the relevant scales of those pressures. PMID:24143173

  14. Marine Fouling Assemblages on Offshore Gas Platforms in the Southern North Sea: Effects of Depth and Distance from Shore on Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    van der Stap, Tim; Coolen, Joop W. P.; Lindeboom, Han J.

    2016-01-01

    Offshore platforms are known to act as artificial reefs, though there is on-going debate on whether this effect is beneficial or harmful for the life in the surrounding marine environment. Knowing what species exist on and around the offshore platforms and what environmental variables influence this species assemblage is crucial for a better understanding of the impact of offshore platforms on marine life. Information on this is limited for offshore platforms in the southern North Sea. This study aims to fill this gap in our knowledge and to determine how the composition and the abundance of species assemblages changes with depth and along a distance-from-shore gradient. The species assemblages on five offshore gas platforms in the southern North Sea have been inventoried using Remotely Operated Vehicles inspection footage. A total of 30 taxa were identified. A Generalised Additive Model of the species richness showed a significant non-linear relation with water depth (p = 0.001): from a low richness in shallow waters it increases with depth until 15–20 m, after which richness decreases again. Using PERMANOVA, water depth (p≤0.001), community age (p≤0.001) and the interaction between distance from shore and community age (p≤0.001) showed a significant effect on the species assemblages. Future research should focus on the effect additional environmental variables have on the species assemblages. PMID:26745870

  15. Conserving Biodiversity in a Human-Dominated World: Degradation of Marine Sessile Communities within a Protected Area with Conflicting Human Uses

    PubMed Central

    Parravicini, Valeriano; Micheli, Fiorenza; Montefalcone, Monica; Morri, Carla; Villa, Elisa; Castellano, Michela; Povero, Paolo; Bianchi, Carlo Nike

    2013-01-01

    Conservation research aims at understanding whether present protection schemes are adequate for the maintenance of ecosystems structure and function across time. We evaluated long-term variation in rocky reef communities by comparing sites surveyed in 1993 and again in 2008. This research took place in Tigullio Gulf, an emblematic case study where various conservation measures, including a marine protected area, have been implemented to manage multiple human uses. Contrary to our prediction that protection should have favored ecosystem stability, we found that communities subjected to conservation measures (especially within the marine protected area) exhibited the greatest variation toward architectural complexity loss. Between 1993 and 2008, chronic anthropogenic pressures (especially organic load) that had already altered unprotected sites in 1993 expanded their influence into protected areas. This expansion of human pressure likely explains our observed changes in the benthic communities. Our results suggest that adaptive ecosystem-based management (EBM), that is management taking into account human interactions, informed by continuous monitoring, is needed in order to attempt reversing the current trend towards less architecturally complex communities. Protected areas are not sufficient to stop ecosystem alteration by pressures coming from outside. Monitoring, and consequent management actions, should therefore extend to cover the relevant scales of those pressures. PMID:24143173

  16. Marine Fouling Assemblages on Offshore Gas Platforms in the Southern North Sea: Effects of Depth and Distance from Shore on Biodiversity.

    PubMed

    van der Stap, Tim; Coolen, Joop W P; Lindeboom, Han J

    2016-01-01

    Offshore platforms are known to act as artificial reefs, though there is on-going debate on whether this effect is beneficial or harmful for the life in the surrounding marine environment. Knowing what species exist on and around the offshore platforms and what environmental variables influence this species assemblage is crucial for a better understanding of the impact of offshore platforms on marine life. Information on this is limited for offshore platforms in the southern North Sea. This study aims to fill this gap in our knowledge and to determine how the composition and the abundance of species assemblages changes with depth and along a distance-from-shore gradient. The species assemblages on five offshore gas platforms in the southern North Sea have been inventoried using Remotely Operated Vehicles inspection footage. A total of 30 taxa were identified. A Generalised Additive Model of the species richness showed a significant non-linear relation with water depth (p = 0.001): from a low richness in shallow waters it increases with depth until 15-20 m, after which richness decreases again. Using PERMANOVA, water depth (p≤0.001), community age (p≤0.001) and the interaction between distance from shore and community age (p≤0.001) showed a significant effect on the species assemblages. Future research should focus on the effect additional environmental variables have on the species assemblages. PMID:26745870

  17. A high CO2 -driven decrease in plant transpiration leads to perturbations in the hydrological cycle and may link terrestrial and marine loss of biodiversity: deep-time evidence.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinthorsdottir, Margret; Woodward, F. Ian; Surlyk, Finn; McElwain, Jennifer C.

    2013-04-01

    CO2 is obtained and water vapor simultaneously transpired through plant stomata, driving the water uptake of roots. Stomata are key elements of the Earth's hydrological cycle, since a large part of the evapotranspiration from the surface to the atmosphere takes place via stomatal pores. Plants exercise stomatal control, by adjusting stomatal size and/or density in order to preserve water while maintaining carbon uptake for photosynthesis. A global decrease in stomatal density and/or size causes a decrease in transpiration and has the potential to increase global runoff. Here we show, from 91 fossil leaf cuticle specimens from the Triassic/Jurassic boundary transition (Tr-J) of East Greenland, that both stomatal size and density decreased dramatically during the Tr-J, coinciding with mass extinctions, major environmental upheaval and a negative C-isotope excursion. We estimate that these developmental and structural changes in stomata resulted in a 50-60% drop in stomatal and canopy transpiration as calibrated using a stomatal model, based on empirical measurements and adjusted for fossil plants. We additionally present new field evidence indicating a change to increased erosion and bad-land formation at the Tr-J. We hypothesize that plant physiological responses to high carbon dioxide concentrations at the Tr-J may have increased runoff at the local and perhaps even regional scale. Increased runoff may result in increased flux of nutrients from land to oceans, leading to eutrophication, anoxia and ultimately loss of marine biodiversity. High-CO2 driven changes in stomatal and canopy transpiration therefore provide a possible mechanistic link between terrestrial ecological crisis and marine mass extinction at the Tr-J.

  18. Quantifying the effects of European beach grass on aeolian sand transport over the last century: Bodega Marine Reserve, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cesmat, R.; Werner, S.; Smith, M. E.; Riedel, T.; Best, R.; Olyarnik, S.

    2012-12-01

    Introduction of European beach grass (Ammophila arenaria) to coastal dune systems of western North America induced significant changes to the transport and storage of sediment, and consequently the nesting habitat of the western snowy plover (Charadrius alexandrinus nivosus). At the Bodega Marine Reserve and Sonoma Coast State Park, Ammophila was introduced within the ~0.5 km2 dune area in the 1920's to limit the flux of sand through Bodega Harbor and agricultural land. To assess the potential impact of restoration efforts (Ammophila removal) on aeolian sediment flux, we measured sediment flux as a function of wind speeds and ground cover, and used these measurements to parameterize a spatial model for historical sand deposition Fine- to coarse-grained lithic to sub-lithic sand is delivered to the Bodega dune system from Salmon Creek beach, the down-shore terminus of a littoral system fed by the 3846 km2 Russian River catchment, several small (<100 km2) coastal catchments, and seacliff erosion. Littoral sediment traverses the 1.8 km wide dune system from NW to SE via aeolian transport. Ammophila colonization occurred initially adjacent to the shoreface, inducing deposition of a ~10 meter-high foredune and has subsequently encroached the ~0.5 km2 region between the foredune and Bodega Harbor. Comparison of historical topographic maps via raster subtraction indicates rapid construction of both the foredune and a ~15 meter-high transverse dune (Gaffney ridge) at the edge of the planted region. An average accumulation rate of ~4,000 m3/yr is indicated within the study swath by the preserved sediment volumes. Within the modern dune system, unvegetated areas exhibit 2-3 meter wavelength, ~1/2 meter amplitude mega-ripples, and the uppermost 2-10 cm consists of coarse-sand to granule-sized armor layer. In contrast, grain-sizes in vegetated areas are largely vertically homogenous. Open areas are typically 2-8 meters lower than adjacent vegetated areas, and show evidence for

  19. Biodiversity patterns of the marine benthic fauna on the Atlantic coast of tropical Africa in relation to hydroclimatic conditions and paleogeographic events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lœuff, Pierre Le; von Cosel, Rudo

    1998-06-01

    Five different hydroclimatic regions are recognized in the tropical eastern Atlantic: the northern alternance region (Cape Blanc - Cape Verga), the atypical tropical region (Cape Palmas - border Benin/Nigeria), the southern alternance region (Cape Lopez - Cape Frio), all with periodical upwelling of colder water, and two intercalated typical tropical regions with warm water and reduced salinity. The faunal richness in the regions with upwelling is higher than in the typical tropical regions because many benthic species avoid warm and reduced salinity water. Faunistic exchange and affinity are greater between the upwelling zones and the bordering temperate zones. The cold regions are also more similar in faunal composition. Benthic communities in both tropical and temperate eastern Atlantic are not fundamentally different. Species diversity of benthic invertebrates in tropical West Africa is about the same order of magnitude as in Europe and the Mediterranean. Hydroclimatic conditions (upwelling, salinity reduction and internal waves with drastic temperature changes) and absence of coral reef formations do not favour the establishment and thriving of a warm stenohaline and stenotherm fauna in West Africa. Paleozoogeographic events, such as the formation of a large Euro-West African tropical province during the Miocene after the breakup of the Tethys, repeated climate deteriorations during Pliocene and Pleistocene with reductions of the tropical zone, sea level changes and large-scale extinction of warm-tropical species, are also factors responsible for the current low biodiversity in the tropical eastern Atlantic. Some species survived in two major relict pockets in Senegal and southern Angola with particular ecological conditions.

  20. Techniques for Quantifying Phytoplankton Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Zackary I.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2015-01-01

    The biodiversity of phytoplankton is a core measurement of the state and activity of marine ecosystems. In the context of historical approaches, we review recent major advances in the technologies that have enabled deeper characterization of the biodiversity of phytoplankton. In particular, high-throughput sequencing of single loci/genes, genomes, and communities (metagenomics) has revealed exceptional phylogenetic and genomic diversity whose breadth is not fully constrained. Other molecular tools—such as fingerprinting, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and fluorescence in situ hybridization—have provided additional insight into the dynamics of this diversity in the context of environmental variability. Techniques for characterizing the functional diversity of community structure through targeted or untargeted approaches based on RNA or protein have also greatly advanced. A wide range of techniques is now available for characterizing phytoplankton communities, and these tools will continue to advance through ongoing improvements in both technology and data interpretation.

  1. Imprints from genetic drift and mutation imply relative divergence times across marine transition zones in a pan-European small pelagic fish (Sprattus sprattus).

    PubMed

    Limborg, M T; Hanel, R; Debes, P V; Ring, A K; André, C; Tsigenopoulos, C S; Bekkevold, D

    2012-08-01

    Geographic distributions of most temperate marine fishes are affected by postglacial recolonisation events, which have left complex genetic imprints on populations of marine species. This study investigated population structure and demographic history of European sprat (Sprattus sprattus L.) by combining inference from both mtDNA and microsatellite genetic markers throughout the species' distribution. We compared effects from genetic drift and mutation for both genetic markers in shaping genetic differentiation across four transition zones. Microsatellite markers revealed significant isolation by distance and a complex population structure across the species' distribution (overall θ(ST)=0.038, P<0.01). Across transition zones markers indicated larger effects of genetic drift over mutations in the northern distribution of sprat contrasting a stronger relative impact of mutation in the species' southern distribution in the Mediterranean region. These results were interpreted to reflect more recent divergence times between northern populations in accordance with previous findings. This study demonstrates the usefulness of comparing inference from different markers and estimators of divergence for phylogeographic and population genetic studies in species with weak genetic structure, as is the case in many marine species.

  2. Hollow rhodoliths increase Svalbard's shelf biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teichert, Sebastian

    2014-11-01

    Rhodoliths are coralline red algal assemblages that commonly occur in marine habitats from the tropics to polar latitudes. They form rigid structures of high-magnesium calcite and have a good fossil record. Here I show that rhodoliths are ecosystem engineers in a high Arctic environment that increase local biodiversity by providing habitat. Gouged by boring mussels, originally solid rhodoliths become hollow ecospheres intensely colonised by benthic organisms. In the examined shelf areas, biodiversity in rhodolith-bearing habitats is significantly greater than in habitats without rhodoliths and hollow rhodoliths yield a greater biodiversity than solid ones. This biodiversity, however, is threatened because hollow rhodoliths take a long time to form and are susceptible to global change and anthropogenic impacts such as trawl net fisheries that can destroy hollow rhodoliths. Rhodoliths and other forms of coralline red algae play a key role in a plurality of environments and need improved management and protection plans.

  3. Hollow rhodoliths increase Svalbard's shelf biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Teichert, Sebastian

    2014-11-10

    Rhodoliths are coralline red algal assemblages that commonly occur in marine habitats from the tropics to polar latitudes. They form rigid structures of high-magnesium calcite and have a good fossil record. Here I show that rhodoliths are ecosystem engineers in a high Arctic environment that increase local biodiversity by providing habitat. Gouged by boring mussels, originally solid rhodoliths become hollow ecospheres intensely colonised by benthic organisms. In the examined shelf areas, biodiversity in rhodolith-bearing habitats is significantly greater than in habitats without rhodoliths and hollow rhodoliths yield a greater biodiversity than solid ones. This biodiversity, however, is threatened because hollow rhodoliths take a long time to form and are susceptible to global change and anthropogenic impacts such as trawl net fisheries that can destroy hollow rhodoliths. Rhodoliths and other forms of coralline red algae play a key role in a plurality of environments and need improved management and protection plans.

  4. Hollow rhodoliths increase Svalbard's shelf biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Teichert, Sebastian

    2014-01-01

    Rhodoliths are coralline red algal assemblages that commonly occur in marine habitats from the tropics to polar latitudes. They form rigid structures of high-magnesium calcite and have a good fossil record. Here I show that rhodoliths are ecosystem engineers in a high Arctic environment that increase local biodiversity by providing habitat. Gouged by boring mussels, originally solid rhodoliths become hollow ecospheres intensely colonised by benthic organisms. In the examined shelf areas, biodiversity in rhodolith-bearing habitats is significantly greater than in habitats without rhodoliths and hollow rhodoliths yield a greater biodiversity than solid ones. This biodiversity, however, is threatened because hollow rhodoliths take a long time to form and are susceptible to global change and anthropogenic impacts such as trawl net fisheries that can destroy hollow rhodoliths. Rhodoliths and other forms of coralline red algae play a key role in a plurality of environments and need improved management and protection plans. PMID:25382656

  5. Biodiversity Science In The Deep Sea: The ESF EuroDEEP Programme

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonckheere, I. G.

    2007-12-01

    What little we know of deep-sea ecosystems indicates that they host one of the highest biodiversities on the planet as well as important mineral and biological resources, which are increasingly being exploited. Understanding deep-sea biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, from viruses to megafauna, is essential to assess the impact of natural and anthropogenic factors and provide management options. The aim of the multidisciplinary ESF EUROCORES Programme EuroDEEP, Ecosystem Functioning and Biodiversity in Deep Sea, is to further explore and identify the different deep-sea habitats, assessing both the abiotic and biotic processes that sustain and maintain deep-sea communities. The scope is to interpret variations of biodiversity within and between deep-sea habitats, and the interactions of the biota with the ecosystems in which they live. The resulting scientific data are a prerequisite for the sustainable use and the development of management and conservation options aiming at the sustainable use of marine resources that will benefit society as a whole. The Programme aims at providing the necessary framework and funding for the development of top-quality deep- sea research at the European level in a global context (Census of Marine Life and SCOR/IGBP). In particular, it builds on sharing of national large-scale resources, which are essential for deep-sea research (i.e. ships, ROVs, submersibles, AUVs, deep-towed vehicles, deep-sea sampling equipment, new sensors, etc.) as well as the coordination of efforts amongst scientists and laboratories from the countries involved and links with ongoing projects. EuroDEEP will participate in the development of new technologies as well as data management, analysis and modelling. Most of all, EuroDEEP will catalyse excellent research on what biodiversity exists in the deep sea, how it is generated and maintained by abiotic and biotic processes, and what the role of the deep-sea is in the biogeochemical processes affecting the

  6. 78 FR 19353 - Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction; Notice of Public Meeting

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-29

    ... Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction; Notice of Public Meeting ACTION: Notice of public meeting. SUMMARY... biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. DATES: The public meeting will be held on April 23, 2013... negotiations on marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction, such as the meeting of the UN BBNJ...

  7. [Hurricanes and tropical coastal biodiversity].

    PubMed

    Salazar-Vallejo, Sergio I

    2002-06-01

    Tropical coastal biodiversity has been modulated by tropical storms during a long time and it is currently facing a heavy human impact. The purpose of this review is to compile the available information to improve our understanding of hurricane impacts and to promote the establishment of coastal landscape monitoring, because that is the best way to assess these impacts. Although generalizations on hurricane effects are elusive, some historical dynamics and temporal relationships are included and some details are presented on the impacts by resuspension and movement of sediments, storm waves, and breaking off of coral reef organisms. Some effects on marine turtles and coastal forests are also briefly pointed out.

  8. Marine microbial genomics in Europe: current status and perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Glöckner, Frank Oliver; Joint, Ian

    2010-01-01

    Summary The oceans are the Earth's largest ecosystem, covering 70% of our planet and providing goods and services for the majority of the world's population. Understanding the complex abiotic and biotic processes on the micro‐ to macroscale is the key to protect and sustain the marine ecosystem. Marine microorganisms are the ‘gatekeepers’ of the biotic processes that control the global cycles of energy and organic matter. A multinational, multidisciplinary approach, bringing together research on oceanography, biodiversity and genomics, is now needed to understand and finally predict the complex responses of the marine ecosystem to ongoing global changes. Such an integrative approach will not only bring better understanding of the complex interplay of the organisms with their environment, but will reveal a wealth of new metabolic processes and functions, which have a high potential for biotechnological applications. This potential has already been recognized by the European commission which funded a series of workshops and projects on marine genomics in the sixth and seventh framework programme. Nevertheless, there remain many obstacles to achieving the goal – such as a lack of bioinformatics tailored for the marine field, consistent data acquisition and exchange, as well as continuous monitoring programmes and a lack of relevant marine bacterial models. Marine ecosystems research is complex and challenging, but it also harbours the opportunity to cross the borders between disciplines and countries to finally create a rewarding marine research era that is more than the sum of its parts. PMID:20953416

  9. Marine microbial genomics in Europe: current status and perspectives.

    PubMed

    Glöckner, Frank Oliver; Joint, Ian

    2010-09-01

    The oceans are the Earth's largest ecosystem, covering 70% of our planet and providing goods and services for the majority of the world's population. Understanding the complex abiotic and biotic processes on the micro- to macroscale is the key to protect and sustain the marine ecosystem. Marine microorganisms are the 'gatekeepers' of the biotic processes that control the global cycles of energy and organic matter. A multinational, multidisciplinary approach, bringing together research on oceanography, biodiversity and genomics, is now needed to understand and finally predict the complex responses of the marine ecosystem to ongoing global changes. Such an integrative approach will not only bring better understanding of the complex interplay of the organisms with their environment, but will reveal a wealth of new metabolic processes and functions, which have a high potential for biotechnological applications. This potential has already been recognized by the European commission which funded a series of workshops and projects on marine genomics in the sixth and seventh framework programme. Nevertheless, there remain many obstacles to achieving the goal – such as a lack of bioinformatics tailored for the marine field, consistent data acquisition and exchange, as well as continuous monitoring programmes and a lack of relevant marine bacterial models. Marine ecosystems research is complex and challenging, but it also harbours the opportunity to cross the borders between disciplines and countries to finally create a rewarding marine research era that is more than the sum of its parts.

  10. Spatial and temporal benthic species assemblage responses with a deployed marine tidal energy device: a small scaled study.

    PubMed

    Broadhurst, Melanie; Orme, C David L

    2014-08-01

    The addition of man-made structures to the marine environment is known to increase the physical complexity of the seafloor, which can influence benthic species community patterns and habitat structure. However, knowledge of how deployed tidal energy device structures influence benthic communities is currently lacking. Here we examined species biodiversity, composition and habitat type surrounding a tidal energy device within the European Marine Energy Centre test site, Orkney. Commercial fishing and towed video camera techniques were used over three temporal periods, from 2009 to 2010. Our results showed increased species biodiversity and compositional differences within the device site, compared to a control site. Both sites largely comprised of crustacean species, omnivore or predatory feeding regimes and marine tide-swept EUNIS habitat types, which varied over the time. We conclude that the device could act as a localised artificial reef structure, but that further in-depth investigations are required. PMID:24840255

  11. Spatial and temporal benthic species assemblage responses with a deployed marine tidal energy device: a small scaled study.

    PubMed

    Broadhurst, Melanie; Orme, C David L

    2014-08-01

    The addition of man-made structures to the marine environment is known to increase the physical complexity of the seafloor, which can influence benthic species community patterns and habitat structure. However, knowledge of how deployed tidal energy device structures influence benthic communities is currently lacking. Here we examined species biodiversity, composition and habitat type surrounding a tidal energy device within the European Marine Energy Centre test site, Orkney. Commercial fishing and towed video camera techniques were used over three temporal periods, from 2009 to 2010. Our results showed increased species biodiversity and compositional differences within the device site, compared to a control site. Both sites largely comprised of crustacean species, omnivore or predatory feeding regimes and marine tide-swept EUNIS habitat types, which varied over the time. We conclude that the device could act as a localised artificial reef structure, but that further in-depth investigations are required.

  12. Histopathological indices in sole (Solea solea) and hake (Merluccius merluccius) for implementation of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive along the Basque continental shelf (SE Bay of Biscay).

    PubMed

    Cuevas, Nagore; Zorita, Izaskun; Costa, Pedro M; Quincoces, Iñaki; Larreta, Joana; Franco, Javier

    2015-05-15

    Sole and hake, together with sediments, were collected during two campaigns along the Basque continental shelf to study the utility of two existing histopathological indices for assessing the biological effects of contaminants to implement the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Hepatic and gonadal histopathology were measured, and metal and/or organic contaminants were determined in both liver and sediments. Sediments from the Basque continental shelf were found to be moderately impacted by metals but non-impacted by organic compounds. Metal bioaccumulation and histopathological lesions in liver were higher in sole than in hake, although non-specific and early non-neoplastic toxicopathic lesions were observed in both species. No gross alterations were recorded in gonad. The two histopathological indices applied were highly correlated in both organs but the lack of correlation between sediment contamination levels, bioaccumulation and histopathological indices suggests that other factors, rather than pollution alone, are responsible for the biological effects observed.

  13. Monitoring the impact of litter in large vertebrates in the Mediterranean Sea within the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD): constraints, specificities and recommendations.

    PubMed

    Galgani, F; Claro, F; Depledge, M; Fossi, C

    2014-09-01

    In its decision (2010/477/EU) relating to the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD, 2008/56/EC), the European Commission identified the following points as focuses for monitoring: (i) 10.1.1: Trends in the amount, source and composition of litter washed ashore and/or deposited on coastlines, (ii) 10.1.2: Trends in the amount and composition of litter in the water column and accumulation on the sea floor, (iii) 10.1.3: Trends in the amount, distribution and composition of micro-particles (mainly microplastics), and (iv) 10.2.1: Trends in the amount and composition of litter ingested by marine animals. Monitoring the impacts of litter will be considered further in 2014. At that time, the strategy will be discussed in the context of the Mediterranean Sea, providing information on constraints, protocols, existing harm and research needed to support monitoring efforts. The definition of targets and acceptable levels of harm must take all factors into account, whether entanglement, ingestion, the transport and release of pollutants, the transport of alien species and socio-economic impacts. It must also reflect on the practical deployment of "ingestion" measures (10.2.1). The analysis of existing data will reveal the potential and suitability of some higher trophic level organisms (fish, turtles, birds and mammals) for monitoring the adverse effects of litter. Sea turtles appear to be useful indicator species, but the definition of an ecological quality objective is still needed, as well as research on alternative potential indicator species. PMID:24612883

  14. The changing form of Antarctic biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Chown, Steven L; Clarke, Andrew; Fraser, Ceridwen I; Cary, S Craig; Moon, Katherine L; McGeoch, Melodie A

    2015-06-25

    Antarctic biodiversity is much more extensive, ecologically diverse and biogeographically structured than previously thought. Understanding of how this diversity is distributed in marine and terrestrial systems, the mechanisms underlying its spatial variation, and the significance of the microbiota is growing rapidly. Broadly recognizable drivers of diversity variation include energy availability and historical refugia. The impacts of local human activities and global environmental change nonetheless pose challenges to the current and future understanding of Antarctic biodiversity. Life in the Antarctic and the Southern Ocean is surprisingly rich, and as much at risk from environmental change as it is elsewhere. PMID:26108852

  15. International arrivals: widespread bioinvasions in European Seas

    PubMed Central

    Galil, B.S.; Marchini, A.; Occhipinti-Ambrogi, A.; Minchin, D.; Narščius, A.; Ojaveer, H.; Olenin, S.

    2014-01-01

    The European Union lacks a comprehensive framework to address the threats posed by the introduction and spread of marine non-indigenous species (NIS). Current efforts are fragmented and suffer substantial gaps in coverage. In this paper we identify and discuss issues relating to the assessment of spatial and temporal patterns of introductions in European Seas (ES), based on a scientifically validated information system of aquatic non-indigenous and cryptogenic species, AquaNIS. While recognizing the limitations of the existing data, we extract information that can be used to assess the relative risk of introductions for different taxonomic groups, geographic regions and likely vectors. The dataset comprises 879 multicellular NIS. We applied a country-based approach to assess patterns of NIS richness in ES, and identify the principal introduction routes and vectors, the most widespread NIS and their spatial and temporal spread patterns. Between 1970 and 2013, the number of recorded NIS has grown by 86, 173 and 204% in the Baltic, Western European margin and the Mediterranean, respectively; 52 of the 879 NIS were recorded in 10 or more countries, and 25 NIS first recorded in European seas since 1990 have since been reported in five or more countries. Our results highlight the ever-rising role of shipping (commercial and recreational) as a vector for the widespread and recently spread NIS. The Suez Canal, a corridor unique to the Mediterranean, is responsible for the increased introduction of new thermophilic NIS into this warming sea. The 2020 goal of the EU Biodiversity Strategy concerning marine Invasive Alien Species may not be fully attainable. The setting of a new target date should be accompanied by scientifically robust, sensible and pragmatic plans to minimize introductions of marine NIS and to study those present. PMID:24899770

  16. The EuroDIVERSITY Programme: Challenges of Biodiversity Science in Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonckheere, I.

    2009-04-01

    In close cooperation with its Member Organisations, the European Science Foundation (ESF) has launched since late 2003 a series of European Collaborative Research (EUROCORES) Programmes. Their aim is to enable researchers in different European countries to develop cooperation and scientific synergy in areas where European scale and scope are required in a global context. The EUROCORES instrument represents the first large scale attempt of national research (funding) agencies to act together against fragmentation, asynchronicity and duplication of research (funding) within Europe. Although covering all scientific fields, there are presently 13 EUROCORES Programmes dealing with cutting edge science in the fields of Earth, Climate and Environmental Sciences. The aim of the EuroDIVERSITY Programme is to support the emergence of an integrated biodiversity science based on an understanding of fundamental ecological and social processes that drive biodiversity changes and their impacts on ecosystem functioning and society. Ecological systems across the globe are being threatened or transformed at unprecedented rates from local to global scales due to the ever-increasing human domination of natural ecosystems. In particular, massive biodiversity changes are currently taking place, and this trend is expected to continue over the coming decades, driven by the increasing extension and globalisation of human affairs. The EuroDIVERSITY Programme meets the research need triggered by the increasing human footprint worldwide with a focus on generalisations across particular systems and on the generation and validation of theory relevant to experimental and empirical data. The EURODIVERSITY Programme tries to bridge the gaps between the natural and social sciences, between research work on terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems, and between research work on plants, animals and micro-organisms. The Programme was launched in April 2006 and includes 10 international

  17. Essential biodiversity variables

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pereira, H.M.; Ferrier, S.; Walters, M.; Geller, G.N.; Jongman, R.H.G.; Scholes, R.J.; Bruford, M.W.; Brummitt, N.; Butchart, S.H.M.; Cardoso, A.C.; Coops, N.C.; Dulloo, E.; Faith, D.P.; Freyhof, J.; Gregory, R.D.; Heip, C.; Höft, R.; Hurtt, G.; Jetz, W.; Karp, D.S.; McGeoch, M.A.; Obura, D.; Onada, Y.; Pettorelli, N.; Reyers, B.; Sayre, R.; Scharlemann, J.P.W.; Stuart, S.N.; Turak, E.; Walpole, M.; Wegmann, M.

    2013-01-01

    Reducing the rate of biodiversity loss and averting dangerous biodiversity change are international goals, reasserted by the Aichi Targets for 2020 by Parties to the United Nations (UN) Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) after failure to meet the 2010 target (1, 2). However, there is no global, harmonized observation system for delivering regular, timely data on biodiversity change (3). With the first plenary meeting of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) soon under way, partners from the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) (4) are developing—and seeking consensus around—Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) that could form the basis of monitoring programs worldwide.

  18. Protection of Marine Mammals.

    PubMed

    Knoll, Michaela; Ciaccia, Ettore; Dekeling, René; Kvadsheim, Petter; Liddell, Kate; Gunnarsson, Stig-Lennart; Ludwig, Stefan; Nissen, Ivor; Lorenzen, Dirk; Kreimeyer, Roman; Pavan, Gianni; Meneghetti, Nello; Nordlund, Nina; Benders, Frank; van der Zwan, Timo; van Zon, Tim; Fraser, Leanne; Johansson, Torbjörn; Garmelius, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Within the European Defense Agency (EDA), the Protection of Marine Mammals (PoMM) project, a comprehensive common marine mammal database essential for risk mitigation tools, was established. The database, built on an extensive dataset collection with the focus on areas of operational interest for European navies, consists of annual and seasonal distribution and density maps, random and systematic sightings, an encyclopedia providing knowledge on the characteristics of 126 marine mammal species, data on marine mammal protection areas, and audio information including numerous examples of various vocalizations. Special investigations on marine mammal acoustics were carried out to improve the detection and classification capabilities.

  19. Protection of Marine Mammals.

    PubMed

    Knoll, Michaela; Ciaccia, Ettore; Dekeling, René; Kvadsheim, Petter; Liddell, Kate; Gunnarsson, Stig-Lennart; Ludwig, Stefan; Nissen, Ivor; Lorenzen, Dirk; Kreimeyer, Roman; Pavan, Gianni; Meneghetti, Nello; Nordlund, Nina; Benders, Frank; van der Zwan, Timo; van Zon, Tim; Fraser, Leanne; Johansson, Torbjörn; Garmelius, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Within the European Defense Agency (EDA), the Protection of Marine Mammals (PoMM) project, a comprehensive common marine mammal database essential for risk mitigation tools, was established. The database, built on an extensive dataset collection with the focus on areas of operational interest for European navies, consists of annual and seasonal distribution and density maps, random and systematic sightings, an encyclopedia providing knowledge on the characteristics of 126 marine mammal species, data on marine mammal protection areas, and audio information including numerous examples of various vocalizations. Special investigations on marine mammal acoustics were carried out to improve the detection and classification capabilities. PMID:26611003

  20. SeaDataNet - Pan-European infrastructure for marine and ocean data management: Unified access to distributed data sets (www.seadatanet.org)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaap, Dick M. A.; Maudire, Gilbert

    2010-05-01

    SeaDataNet is a leading infrastructure in Europe for marine & ocean data management. It is actively operating and further developing a Pan-European infrastructure for managing, indexing and providing access to ocean and marine data sets and data products, acquired via research cruises and other observational activities, in situ and remote sensing. The basis of SeaDataNet is interconnecting 40 National Oceanographic Data Centres and Marine Data Centers from 35 countries around European seas into a distributed network of data resources with common standards for metadata, vocabularies, data transport formats, quality control methods and flags, and access. Thereby most of the NODC's operate and/or are developing national networks to other institutes in their countries to ensure national coverage and long-term stewardship of available data sets. The majority of data managed by SeaDataNet partners concerns physical oceanography, marine chemistry, hydrography, and a substantial volume of marine biology and geology and geophysics. These are partly owned by the partner institutes themselves and for a major part also owned by other organizations from their countries. The SeaDataNet infrastructure is implemented with support of the EU via the EU FP6 SeaDataNet project to provide the Pan-European data management system adapted both to the fragmented observation system and the users need for an integrated access to data, meta-data, products and services. The SeaDataNet project has a duration of 5 years and started in 2006, but builds upon earlier data management infrastructure projects, undertaken over a period of 20 years by an expanding network of oceanographic data centres from the countries around all European seas. Its predecessor project Sea-Search had a strict focus on metadata. SeaDataNet maintains significant interest in the further development of the metadata infrastructure, extending its services with the provision of easy data access and generic data products

  1. Comparative ontogenetic development of two marine teleosts, gilthead seabream and European sea bass: New insights into nutrition and immunity.

    PubMed

    Cordero, Héctor; Guzmán-Villanueva, Laura T; Chaves-Pozo, Elena; Arizcun, Marta; Ascencio-Valle, Felipe; Cuesta, Alberto; Esteban, María A

    2016-12-01

    Gilthead seabream and European sea bass are two of the most commonly farmed fish species. Larval development is critical to ensure high survival rates and thus avoid unacceptable economic losses, while nutrition and immunity are also important factors. For this reason this paper evaluates the ontogenetic development of seabream and sea bass digestive and immune systems from eggs to 73 days post-fertilisation (dpf) by assessing the expression levels of some nutrition-relevant (tryp, amya, alp and pept1) and immune-relevant (il1b, il6, il8, tnfa, cox2, casp1, tf, nccrp1, ighm and ight) genes. The results point to similar ontogenetic development trends for both species as regard nutrition and differences in some immunity related genes.

  2. Master of all trades: thermal acclimation and adaptation of cardiac function in a broadly distributed marine invasive species, the European green crab, Carcinus maenas.

    PubMed

    Tepolt, Carolyn K; Somero, George N

    2014-04-01

    As global warming accelerates, there is increasing concern about how ecosystems may change as a result of species loss and replacement. Here, we examined the thermal physiology of the European green crab (Carcinus maenas Linnaeus 1758), a globally invasive species, along three parallel thermal gradients in its native and invasive ranges. At each site, we assessed cardiac physiology to determine heat and cold tolerance and acclimatory plasticity. We found that, overall, the species is highly tolerant of both heat and cold, and that it survives higher temperatures than co-occurring native marine crustaceans. Further, we found that both heat and cold tolerance are plastic in response to short-term acclimation (18-31 days at either 5 or 25°C). Comparing patterns within ranges, we found latitudinal gradients in thermal tolerance in the native European range and in the invasive range in eastern North America. This pattern is strongest in the native range, and likely evolved there. Because of a complicated invasion history, the latitudinal pattern in the eastern North American invasive range may be due either to rapid adaptation post-invasion or to adaptive differences between the ancestral populations that founded the invasion. Overall, the broad thermal tolerance ranges of green crabs, which may facilitate invasion of novel habitats, derive from high inherent eurythermality and acclimatory plasticity and potentially adaptive differentiation among populations. The highly flexible physiology that results from these capacities may represent the hallmark of a successful invasive species, and may provide a model for success in a changing world.

  3. Master of all trades: thermal acclimation and adaptation of cardiac function in a broadly distributed marine invasive species, the European green crab, Carcinus maenas.

    PubMed

    Tepolt, Carolyn K; Somero, George N

    2014-04-01

    As global warming accelerates, there is increasing concern about how ecosystems may change as a result of species loss and replacement. Here, we examined the thermal physiology of the European green crab (Carcinus maenas Linnaeus 1758), a globally invasive species, along three parallel thermal gradients in its native and invasive ranges. At each site, we assessed cardiac physiology to determine heat and cold tolerance and acclimatory plasticity. We found that, overall, the species is highly tolerant of both heat and cold, and that it survives higher temperatures than co-occurring native marine crustaceans. Further, we found that both heat and cold tolerance are plastic in response to short-term acclimation (18-31 days at either 5 or 25°C). Comparing patterns within ranges, we found latitudinal gradients in thermal tolerance in the native European range and in the invasive range in eastern North America. This pattern is strongest in the native range, and likely evolved there. Because of a complicated invasion history, the latitudinal pattern in the eastern North American invasive range may be due either to rapid adaptation post-invasion or to adaptive differences between the ancestral populations that founded the invasion. Overall, the broad thermal tolerance ranges of green crabs, which may facilitate invasion of novel habitats, derive from high inherent eurythermality and acclimatory plasticity and potentially adaptive differentiation among populations. The highly flexible physiology that results from these capacities may represent the hallmark of a successful invasive species, and may provide a model for success in a changing world. PMID:24671964

  4. Biodiversity in forage stands

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Farmers often plant monocultures or simple grass-legume mixtures in their pastures. Increased biodiversity in pastures may be one tool to improve sustainability and productivity. For this production guide, we will focus on plant biodiversity because it is the most amenable to management in pastures....

  5. Effects of polyunsaturated fatty acids and prostaglandins on oocyte maturation in a marine teleost, the European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax).

    PubMed

    Sorbera, L A; Asturiano, J F; Carrillo, M; Zanuy, S

    2001-01-01

    The effects of the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), arachidonic acid (AA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and prostaglandins (PGs) on oocyte maturation were investigated in a marine teleost, the sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). Follicle-enclosed postvitellogenic, preovulatory oocytes were cultured in vitro and maturation was verified by assessing volume increase, lipid droplet coalescence, yolk clarification, and germinal vesicle migration and breakdown. Human chorionic gonadotropin was administered as the maturation-inducing gonadotropin (GTH) and was capable of inducing maturation in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Free AA induced maturation in a dose- and time-dependent manner and enhanced GTH-induced maturation, while EPA, DHA, and oleic acid were ineffective. Maturation induced by GTH was significantly suppressed by a phospholipase A(2) blocker, suggesting that mobilization of AA was involved in GTH-induced maturation. Moreover, EPA and DHA exhibited a significant, dose-dependent attenuation of GTH-induced maturation. Maturation induced by GTH was inhibited in the presence of a cyclooxygenase inhibitor, indomethacin, and this inhibition was reversed by addition of AA, PGE(2), or PGF(2alpha). PGE(2) and PGF(2alpha) alone were both effective stimulators of maturation, while PGE(1) and PGE(3) were ineffective. The effect of PUFAs on oocyte maturation in vitro were corroborated with studies in vivo. Oocytes were obtained from females fed a commercial, PUFA-enriched diet (RD) and maturational behavior was compared with oocytes from females fed a natural diet (ND) with a higher EPA content and n-3:n-6 ratio. Although no significant difference was observed in the rate of spontaneous oocyte maturation, a higher percentage of GTH-induced maturation and lower percentage of atresia were observed in RD oocytes. Moreover, while basal PGE production from oocytes from both groups was the same, RD oocytes produced significantly higher levels

  6. Overview on the European green crab Carcinus spp. (Portunidae, Decapoda), one of the most famous marine invaders and ecotoxicological models.

    PubMed

    Leignel, V; Stillman, J H; Baringou, S; Thabet, R; Metais, I

    2014-01-01

    Green crabs (Carcinus, Portunidae) include two species native to Europe--Carcinus aestuarii (Mediterranean species) and Carcinus maenas (Atlantic species). These small shore crabs (maximal length carapace, approximately 10 cm) show rapid growth, high fecundity, and long planktonic larval stages that facilitate broad dispersion. Carcinus spp. have a high tolerance to fluctuations of environmental factors including oxygen, salinity, temperature, xenobiotic compounds, and others. Shipping of Carcinus spp. over the past centuries has resulted in its invasions of America, Asia, and Australia. Classified as one of the world's 100 worst invaders by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Carcinus spp. are the most widely distributed intertidal crabs in the world. Their voracious predatory activity makes them strong interactors in local communities, and they are recognized as a model for invasiveness in marine systems as well as a sentinel species in ecotoxicology. This review shows an exhaustive analysis of the literature on the life cycle, diversity, physiological tolerance, genomic investigations, ecotoxicological use, historical invasion, control programs, and putative economical valorization of shore crabs. PMID:24793074

  7. Overview on the European green crab Carcinus spp. (Portunidae, Decapoda), one of the most famous marine invaders and ecotoxicological models.

    PubMed

    Leignel, V; Stillman, J H; Baringou, S; Thabet, R; Metais, I

    2014-01-01

    Green crabs (Carcinus, Portunidae) include two species native to Europe--Carcinus aestuarii (Mediterranean species) and Carcinus maenas (Atlantic species). These small shore crabs (maximal length carapace, approximately 10 cm) show rapid growth, high fecundity, and long planktonic larval stages that facilitate broad dispersion. Carcinus spp. have a high tolerance to fluctuations of environmental factors including oxygen, salinity, temperature, xenobiotic compounds, and others. Shipping of Carcinus spp. over the past centuries has resulted in its invasions of America, Asia, and Australia. Classified as one of the world's 100 worst invaders by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Carcinus spp. are the most widely distributed intertidal crabs in the world. Their voracious predatory activity makes them strong interactors in local communities, and they are recognized as a model for invasiveness in marine systems as well as a sentinel species in ecotoxicology. This review shows an exhaustive analysis of the literature on the life cycle, diversity, physiological tolerance, genomic investigations, ecotoxicological use, historical invasion, control programs, and putative economical valorization of shore crabs.

  8. Techno-economic assessment of biofuel development by anaerobic digestion of European marine cold-water seaweeds.

    PubMed

    Dave, Ashok; Huang, Ye; Rezvani, Sina; McIlveen-Wright, David; Novaes, Marcio; Hewitt, Neil

    2013-05-01

    The techno-economic characteristics of macro-algae utilisation from European temperate zones was evaluated in a selected Anaerobic Digester (AD) using the chemical process modelling software ECLIPSE. The assessment covered the mass and energy balance of the entire process followed by the economic feasibility study, which included the total cost estimation, net present value calculation, and sensitivity analysis. The selected plant size corresponded to a community based AD of 1.6 MWth with a macro-algae feed rate of 8.64 tonnes per day (dry basis). The produced biogas was utilised in a combined heat and power plant generating 237 kWenet electricity and 367 kWth heat. The breakeven electricity-selling price in this study was estimated at around €120/MWh. On the ground of different national and regional policies, this study did not account for any government incentives. However, different support mechanisms such as Feed-in-Tariffs or Renewable Obligation Certificates can significantly improve the project viability.

  9. Techno-economic assessment of biofuel development by anaerobic digestion of European marine cold-water seaweeds.

    PubMed

    Dave, Ashok; Huang, Ye; Rezvani, Sina; McIlveen-Wright, David; Novaes, Marcio; Hewitt, Neil

    2013-05-01

    The techno-economic characteristics of macro-algae utilisation from European temperate zones was evaluated in a selected Anaerobic Digester (AD) using the chemical process modelling software ECLIPSE. The assessment covered the mass and energy balance of the entire process followed by the economic feasibility study, which included the total cost estimation, net present value calculation, and sensitivity analysis. The selected plant size corresponded to a community based AD of 1.6 MWth with a macro-algae feed rate of 8.64 tonnes per day (dry basis). The produced biogas was utilised in a combined heat and power plant generating 237 kWenet electricity and 367 kWth heat. The breakeven electricity-selling price in this study was estimated at around €120/MWh. On the ground of different national and regional policies, this study did not account for any government incentives. However, different support mechanisms such as Feed-in-Tariffs or Renewable Obligation Certificates can significantly improve the project viability. PMID:23462594

  10. Can we detect oceanic biodiversity hotspots from space?

    PubMed

    De Monte, Silvia; Soccodato, Alice; Alvain, Séverine; d'Ovidio, Francesco

    2013-10-01

    Understanding the variability of marine biodiversity is a central issue in microbiology. Current observational programs are based on in situ studies, but their implementation at the global scale is particularly challenging, owing to the ocean extent, its temporal variability and the heterogeneity of the data sources on which compilations are built. Here, we explore the possibility of identifying phytoplanktonic biodiversity hotspots from satellite. We define a Shannon entropy index based on patchiness in ocean color bio-optical anomalies. This index provides a high resolution (1 degree) global coverage. It shows a relation to temperature and mid-latitude maxima in accordance with those previously evidenced in microbiological biodiversity model and observational studies. Regional maxima are in remarkable agreement with several known biodiversity hotspots for plankton organisms and even for higher levels of the marine trophic chain, as well as with some in situ planktonic biodiversity estimates (from Atlantic Meridional Transect cruise). These results encourage to explore marine biodiversity with a coordinated effort of the molecular, ecological and remote sensing communities.

  11. Biodiversity enhances reef fish biomass and resistance to climate change.

    PubMed

    Duffy, J Emmett; Lefcheck, Jonathan S; Stuart-Smith, Rick D; Navarrete, Sergio A; Edgar, Graham J

    2016-05-31

    Fishes are the most diverse group of vertebrates, play key functional roles in aquatic ecosystems, and provide protein for a billion people, especially in the developing world. Those functions are compromised by mounting pressures on marine biodiversity and ecosystems. Because of its economic and food value, fish biomass production provides an unusually direct link from biodiversity to critical ecosystem services. We used the Reef Life Survey's global database of 4,556 standardized fish surveys to test the importance of biodiversity to fish production relative to 25 environmental drivers. Temperature, biodiversity, and human influence together explained 47% of the global variation in reef fish biomass among sites. Fish species richness and functional diversity were among the strongest predictors of fish biomass, particularly for the large-bodied species and carnivores preferred by fishers, and these biodiversity effects were robust to potentially confounding influences of sample abundance, scale, and environmental correlations. Warmer temperatures increased biomass directly, presumably by raising metabolism, and indirectly by increasing diversity, whereas temperature variability reduced biomass. Importantly, diversity and climate interact, with biomass of diverse communities less affected by rising and variable temperatures than species-poor communities. Biodiversity thus buffers global fish biomass from climate change, and conservation of marine biodiversity can stabilize fish production in a changing ocean. PMID:27185921

  12. Coral reef resilience through biodiversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rogers, Caroline S.

    2013-01-01

    Irrefutable evidence of coral reef degradation worldwide and increasing pressure from rising seawater temperatures and ocean acidification associated with climate change have led to a focus on reef resilience and a call to “manage” coral reefs for resilience. Ideally, global action to reduce emission of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases will be accompanied by local action. Effective management requires reduction of local stressors, identification of the characteristics of resilient reefs, and design of marine protected area networks that include potentially resilient reefs. Future research is needed on how stressors interact, on how climate change will affect corals, fish, and other reef organisms as well as overall biodiversity, and on basic ecological processes such as connectivity. Not all reef species and reefs will respond similarly to local and global stressors. Because reef-building corals and other organisms have some potential to adapt to environmental changes, coral reefs will likely persist in spite of the unprecedented combination of stressors currently affecting them. The biodiversity of coral reefs is the basis for their remarkable beauty and for the benefits they provide to society. The extraordinary complexity of these ecosystems makes it both more difficult to predict their future and more likely they will have a future.

  13. Validating a multi-biomarker approach with the shanny Lipophrys pholis to monitor oil spills in European marine ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Santos, M M; Solé, M; Lima, D; Hambach, B; Ferreira, A M; Reis-Henriques, M A

    2010-10-01

    incorporated into risk assessment of PAHs in the scope of national monitoring programs and the European Water Policy legislation.

  14. Comparative brain architecture of the European shore crab Carcinus maenas (Brachyura) and the common hermit crab Pagurus bernhardus (Anomura) with notes on other marine hermit crabs.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Jakob; Sombke, Andy; Seefluth, Florian; Kenning, Matthes; Hansson, Bill S; Harzsch, Steffen

    2012-04-01

    The European shore crab Carcinus maenas and the common hermit crab Pagurus bernhardus are members of the sister taxa Brachyura and Anomura (together forming the taxon Meiura) respectively. Both species share similar coastal marine habitats and thus are confronted with similar environmental conditions. This study sets out to explore variations of general brain architecture of species that live in seemingly similar habitats but belong to different major malacostracan taxa and to understand possible differences of sensory systems and related brain compartments. We examined the brains of Carcinus maenas, Pagurus bernhardus, and three other hermit crab species with immunohistochemistry against tyrosinated tubulin, f-actin, synaptic proteins, RF-amides and allatostatin. Our comparison showed that their optic neuropils within the eyestalks display strong resemblance in gross morphology as well as in detailed organization, suggesting a rather similar potential of processing visual input. Besides the well-developed visual system, the olfactory neuropils are distinct components in the brain of both C. maenas and P. bernhardus as well as the other hermit crabs, suggesting that close integration of olfactory and visual information may be useful in turbid marine environments with low visibility, as is typical for many habitats such as, e.g., the Baltic and the North Sea. Comparing the shape of the olfactory glomeruli in the anomurans showed some variations, ranging from a wedge shape to an elongate morphology. Furthermore, the tritocerebrum and the organization of the second antennae associated with the tritocerebrum seem to differ markedly in C. maenas and P. bernhardus, indicating better mechanosensory abilities in the latter close to those of other Decapoda with long second antennae, such as Astacida, Homarida, or Achelata. This aspect may also represent an adaptation to the "hermit lifestyle" in which competition for shells is a major aspect of their life history. The shore

  15. Comparative brain architecture of the European shore crab Carcinus maenas (Brachyura) and the common hermit crab Pagurus bernhardus (Anomura) with notes on other marine hermit crabs.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Jakob; Sombke, Andy; Seefluth, Florian; Kenning, Matthes; Hansson, Bill S; Harzsch, Steffen

    2012-04-01

    The European shore crab Carcinus maenas and the common hermit crab Pagurus bernhardus are members of the sister taxa Brachyura and Anomura (together forming the taxon Meiura) respectively. Both species share similar coastal marine habitats and thus are confronted with similar environmental conditions. This study sets out to explore variations of general brain architecture of species that live in seemingly similar habitats but belong to different major malacostracan taxa and to understand possible differences of sensory systems and related brain compartments. We examined the brains of Carcinus maenas, Pagurus bernhardus, and three other hermit crab species with immunohistochemistry against tyrosinated tubulin, f-actin, synaptic proteins, RF-amides and allatostatin. Our comparison showed that their optic neuropils within the eyestalks display strong resemblance in gross morphology as well as in detailed organization, suggesting a rather similar potential of processing visual input. Besides the well-developed visual system, the olfactory neuropils are distinct components in the brain of both C. maenas and P. bernhardus as well as the other hermit crabs, suggesting that close integration of olfactory and visual information may be useful in turbid marine environments with low visibility, as is typical for many habitats such as, e.g., the Baltic and the North Sea. Comparing the shape of the olfactory glomeruli in the anomurans showed some variations, ranging from a wedge shape to an elongate morphology. Furthermore, the tritocerebrum and the organization of the second antennae associated with the tritocerebrum seem to differ markedly in C. maenas and P. bernhardus, indicating better mechanosensory abilities in the latter close to those of other Decapoda with long second antennae, such as Astacida, Homarida, or Achelata. This aspect may also represent an adaptation to the "hermit lifestyle" in which competition for shells is a major aspect of their life history. The shore

  16. Utility terrestrial biodiversity issues

    SciTech Connect

    Breece, G.A.; Ward, B.J.

    1996-11-01

    Results from a survey of power utility biologists indicate that terrestrial biodiversity is considered a major issued by only a few utilities; however, a majority believe it may be a future issue. Over half of the respondents indicated that their company is involved in some management for biodiversity, and nearly all feel that it should be a goal for resource management. Only a few utilities are funding biodiversity research, but a majority felt more research was needed. Generally, larger utilities with extensive land holdings had greater opportunities and resources for biodiversity management. Biodiversity will most likely be a concern with transmission rights-of-way construction and maintenance, endangered species issues and general land resource management, including mining reclamation and hydro relicensing commitments. Over half of the companies surveyed have established voluntary partnerships with management groups, and biodiversity is a goal in nearly all the joint projects. Endangered species management and protection, prevention of forest fragmentation, wetland protection, and habitat creation and protection are the most common partnerships involving utility companies. Common management practices and unique approaches are presented, along with details of the survey. 4 refs.

  17. Systems in peril: Climate change, agriculture and biodiversity in Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cocklin, Chris; Dibden, Jacqui

    2009-11-01

    This paper reflects on the interplay amongst three closely linked systems - climate, agriculture and biodiversity - in the Australian context. The advance of a European style of agriculture has imperilled Australian biodiversity. The loss and degradation of biodiversity has, in turn, had negative consequences for agriculture. Climate change is imposing new pressures on both agriculture and biodiversity. From a policy and management perspective, though, it is possible to envisage mitigation and adaptation responses that would alleviate pressures on all three systems (climate, agriculture, biodiversity). In this way, the paper seeks to make explicit the important connections between science and policy. The paper outlines the distinctive features of both biodiversity and agriculture in the Australian context. The discussion then addresses the impacts of agriculture on biodiversity, followed by an overview of how climate change is impacting on both of these systems. The final section of the paper offers some commentary on current policy and management strategies that are targeted at mitigating the loss of biodiversity and which may also have benefits in terms of climate change.

  18. Temperature impacts on deep-sea biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Yasuhara, Moriaki; Danovaro, Roberto

    2016-05-01

    Temperature is considered to be a fundamental factor controlling biodiversity in marine ecosystems, but precisely what role temperature plays in modulating diversity is still not clear. The deep ocean, lacking light and in situ photosynthetic primary production, is an ideal model system to test the effects of temperature changes on biodiversity. Here we synthesize current knowledge on temperature-diversity relationships in the deep sea. Our results from both present and past deep-sea assemblages suggest that, when a wide range of deep-sea bottom-water temperatures is considered, a unimodal relationship exists between temperature and diversity (that may be right skewed). It is possible that temperature is important only when at relatively high and low levels but does not play a major role in the intermediate temperature range. Possible mechanisms explaining the temperature-biodiversity relationship include the physiological-tolerance hypothesis, the metabolic hypothesis, island biogeography theory, or some combination of these. The possible unimodal relationship discussed here may allow us to identify tipping points at which on-going global change and deep-water warming may increase or decrease deep-sea biodiversity. Predicted changes in deep-sea temperatures due to human-induced climate change may have more adverse consequences than expected considering the sensitivity of deep-sea ecosystems to temperature changes. PMID:25523624

  19. Temperature Impacts on Deep-Sea Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasuhara, M.; Danovaro, R.

    2015-12-01

    Temperature is considered to be a fundamental factor controlling biodiversity in marine ecosystems, but precisely what role temperature plays in modulating diversity is still not clear. The deep ocean, lacking light and in situ photosynthetic primary production, is an ideal model system to test the effects of temperature changes on biodiversity. Here we synthesize current knowledge on temperature-diversity relationships in the deep sea. Our results from both present and past deep-sea assemblages suggest that, when a wide range of deep-sea bottom-water temperatures is considered, a unimodal relationship exists between temperature and diversity (that may be right skewed). It is possible that temperature is important only when at relatively high and low levels but does not play a major role in the intermediate temperature range. Possible mechanisms explaining the temperature-biodiversity relationship include the physiological-tolerance hypothesis, the metabolic hypothesis, island biogeography theory, or some combination of these. The possible unimodal relationship discussed here may allow us to identify tipping points at which on-going global change and deep-water warming may increase or decrease deep-sea biodiversity. Predicted changes in deep-sea temperatures due to human-induced climate change may have more adverse consequences than expected considering the sensitivity of deep-sea ecosystems to temperature changes.

  20. Temperature impacts on deep-sea biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Yasuhara, Moriaki; Danovaro, Roberto

    2016-05-01

    Temperature is considered to be a fundamental factor controlling biodiversity in marine ecosystems, but precisely what role temperature plays in modulating diversity is still not clear. The deep ocean, lacking light and in situ photosynthetic primary production, is an ideal model system to test the effects of temperature changes on biodiversity. Here we synthesize current knowledge on temperature-diversity relationships in the deep sea. Our results from both present and past deep-sea assemblages suggest that, when a wide range of deep-sea bottom-water temperatures is considered, a unimodal relationship exists between temperature and diversity (that may be right skewed). It is possible that temperature is important only when at relatively high and low levels but does not play a major role in the intermediate temperature range. Possible mechanisms explaining the temperature-biodiversity relationship include the physiological-tolerance hypothesis, the metabolic hypothesis, island biogeography theory, or some combination of these. The possible unimodal relationship discussed here may allow us to identify tipping points at which on-going global change and deep-water warming may increase or decrease deep-sea biodiversity. Predicted changes in deep-sea temperatures due to human-induced climate change may have more adverse consequences than expected considering the sensitivity of deep-sea ecosystems to temperature changes.

  1. Biodiversity and emerging diseases.

    PubMed

    Maillard, Jean-Charles; Gonzalez, Jean-Paul

    2006-10-01

    First we remind general considerations concerning biodiversity on earth and particularly the loss of genetic biodiversity that seems irreversible whether its origin is directly or indirectly linked to human activities. Urgent and considerable efforts must be made from now on to cataloge, understand, preserve, and enhance the value of biodiversity while ensuring food safety and human and animal health. Ambitious integrated and multifield research programs must be implemented in order to understand the causes and anticipate the consequences of loss of biodiversity. Such losses are a serious threat to sustainable development and to the quality of life of future generations. They have an influence on the natural balance of global biodiversity in particularly in reducing the capability of species to adapt rapidly by genetic mutations to survive in modified ecosystems. Usually, the natural immune systems of mammals (both human and animal), are highly polymorphic and able to adapt rapidly to new situations. We more specifically discuss the fact that if the genetic diversity of the affected populations is low the invading microorganisms, will suddenly expand and create epidemic outbreaks with risks of pandemic. So biodiversity appears to function as an important barrier (buffer), especially against disease-causing organisms, which can function in different ways. Finally, we discuss the importance of preserving biodiversity mainly in the wildlife ecosystems as an integrated and sustainable approach among others in order to prevent and control the emergence or reemergence of diseases in animals and humans (zoonosis). Although plants are also part of this paradigm, they fall outside our field of study.

  2. European information on climate change impacts, vulnerability and adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jol, A.; Isoard, S.

    2010-09-01

    Vulnerability to natural and technological disasters is increasing due to a combination of intensifying land use, increasing industrial development, further urban expansion and expanding infrastructure and also climate change. At EU level the European Commission's White Paper on adaptation to climate change (published in 2009) highlights that adaptation actions should be focused on the most vulnerable areas and communities in Europe (e.g. mountains, coastal areas, river flood prone areas, Mediterranean, Arctic). Mainstreaming of climate change into existing EU policies will be a key policy, including within the Water Framework Directive, Marine Strategy Framework Directive, Nature protection and biodiversity policies, integrated coastal zone management, other (sectoral) policies (agriculture, forestry, energy, transport, health) and disaster risk prevention. 2010 is the international year on biodiversity and the Conference of Parties of the biodiversity convention will meet in autumn 2010 (Japan) to discuss amongst other post-2010 strategies, objectives and indicators. Both within the Biodiversity Convention (CBD) and the Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) there is increasing recognition of the need for integration of biodiversity conservation into climate change mitigation and adaptation activities. Furthermore a number of European countries and also some regions have started to prepare and/or have adopted national adaptation plans or frameworks. Sharing of good practices on climate change vulnerability methods and adaptation actions is so far limited, but is essential to improve such plans, at national, sub national and local level where much of the adaptation action is already taking place and will be expanding in future, also involving increasingly the business community. The EU Clearinghouse on CC impacts, vulnerability and adaptation should address these needs and it is planned to be operational end of 2011. The EEA is expected to have a role in its

  3. Loss of native rocky reef biodiversity in Australian metropolitan embayments.

    PubMed

    Stuart-Smith, Rick D; Edgar, Graham J; Stuart-Smith, Jemina F; Barrett, Neville S; Fowles, Amelia E; Hill, Nicole A; Cooper, Antonia T; Myers, Andrew P; Oh, Elizabeth S; Pocklington, Jacqui B; Thomson, Russell J

    2015-06-15

    Urbanisation of the coastal zone represents a key threat to marine biodiversity, including rocky reef communities which often possess disproportionate ecological, recreational and commercial importance. The nature and magnitude of local urban impacts on reef biodiversity near three Australian capital cities were quantified using visual census methods. The most impacted reefs in urbanised embayments were consistently characterised by smaller, faster growing species, reduced fish biomass and richness, and reduced mobile invertebrate abundance and richness. Reef faunal distribution varied significantly with heavy metals, local population density, and proximity to city ports, while native fish and invertebrate communities were most depauperate in locations where invasive species were abundant. Our study adds impetus for improved urban planning and pollution management practises, while also highlighting the potential for skilled volunteers to improve the tracking of changes in marine biodiversity values and the effectiveness of management intervention. PMID:25882229

  4. Climate constrains the evolutionary history and biodiversity of crocodylians.

    PubMed

    Mannion, Philip D; Benson, Roger B J; Carrano, Matthew T; Tennant, Jonathan P; Judd, Jack; Butler, Richard J

    2015-01-01

    The fossil record of crocodylians and their relatives (pseudosuchians) reveals a rich evolutionary history, prompting questions about causes of long-term decline to their present-day low biodiversity. We analyse climatic drivers of subsampled pseudosuchian biodiversity over their 250 million year history, using a comprehensive new data set. Biodiversity and environmental changes correlate strongly, with long-term decline of terrestrial taxa driven by decreasing temperatures in northern temperate regions, and biodiversity decreases at lower latitudes matching patterns of increasing aridification. However, there is no relationship between temperature and biodiversity for marine pseudosuchians, with sea-level change and post-extinction opportunism demonstrated to be more important drivers. A 'modern-type' latitudinal biodiversity gradient might have existed throughout pseudosuchian history, and range expansion towards the poles occurred during warm intervals. Although their fossil record suggests that current global warming might promote long-term increases in crocodylian biodiversity and geographic range, the 'balancing forces' of anthropogenic environmental degradation complicate future predictions. PMID:26399170

  5. Climate constrains the evolutionary history and biodiversity of crocodylians.

    PubMed

    Mannion, Philip D; Benson, Roger B J; Carrano, Matthew T; Tennant, Jonathan P; Judd, Jack; Butler, Richard J

    2015-09-24

    The fossil record of crocodylians and their relatives (pseudosuchians) reveals a rich evolutionary history, prompting questions about causes of long-term decline to their present-day low biodiversity. We analyse climatic drivers of subsampled pseudosuchian biodiversity over their 250 million year history, using a comprehensive new data set. Biodiversity and environmental changes correlate strongly, with long-term decline of terrestrial taxa driven by decreasing temperatures in northern temperate regions, and biodiversity decreases at lower latitudes matching patterns of increasing aridification. However, there is no relationship between temperature and biodiversity for marine pseudosuchians, with sea-level change and post-extinction opportunism demonstrated to be more important drivers. A 'modern-type' latitudinal biodiversity gradient might have existed throughout pseudosuchian history, and range expansion towards the poles occurred during warm intervals. Although their fossil record suggests that current global warming might promote long-term increases in crocodylian biodiversity and geographic range, the 'balancing forces' of anthropogenic environmental degradation complicate future predictions.

  6. Climate constrains the evolutionary history and biodiversity of crocodylians

    PubMed Central

    Mannion, Philip D.; Benson, Roger B. J.; Carrano, Matthew T.; Tennant, Jonathan P.; Judd, Jack; Butler, Richard J.

    2015-01-01

    The fossil record of crocodylians and their relatives (pseudosuchians) reveals a rich evolutionary history, prompting questions about causes of long-term decline to their present-day low biodiversity. We analyse climatic drivers of subsampled pseudosuchian biodiversity over their 250 million year history, using a comprehensive new data set. Biodiversity and environmental changes correlate strongly, with long-term decline of terrestrial taxa driven by decreasing temperatures in northern temperate regions, and biodiversity decreases at lower latitudes matching patterns of increasing aridification. However, there is no relationship between temperature and biodiversity for marine pseudosuchians, with sea-level change and post-extinction opportunism demonstrated to be more important drivers. A ‘modern-type' latitudinal biodiversity gradient might have existed throughout pseudosuchian history, and range expansion towards the poles occurred during warm intervals. Although their fossil record suggests that current global warming might promote long-term increases in crocodylian biodiversity and geographic range, the 'balancing forces' of anthropogenic environmental degradation complicate future predictions. PMID:26399170

  7. A MSFD complementary approach for the assessment of pressures, knowledge and data gaps in Southern European Seas: The PERSEUS experience.

    PubMed

    Crise, A; Kaberi, H; Ruiz, J; Zatsepin, A; Arashkevich, E; Giani, M; Karageorgis, A P; Prieto, L; Pantazi, M; Gonzalez-Fernandez, D; Ribera d'Alcalà, M; Tornero, V; Vassilopoulou, V; Durrieu de Madron, X; Guieu, C; Puig, P; Zenetos, A; Andral, B; Angel, D; Altukhov, D; Ayata, S D; Aktan, Y; Balcıoğlu, E; Benedetti, F; Bouchoucha, M; Buia, M-C; Cadiou, J-F; Canals, M; Chakroun, M; Christou, E; Christidis, M G; Civitarese, G; Coatu, V; Corsini-Foka, M; Cozzi, S; Deidun, A; Dell'Aquila, A; Dogrammatzi, A; Dumitrache, C; Edelist, D; Ettahiri, O; Fonda-Umani, S; Gana, S; Galgani, F; Gasparini, S; Giannakourou, A; Gomoiu, M-T; Gubanova, A; Gücü, A-C; Gürses, Ö; Hanke, G; Hatzianestis, I; Herut, B; Hone, R; Huertas, E; Irisson, J-O; İşinibilir, M; Jimenez, J A; Kalogirou, S; Kapiris, K; Karamfilov, V; Kavadas, S; Keskin, Ç; Kideyş, A E; Kocak, M; Kondylatos, G; Kontogiannis, C; Kosyan, R; Koubbi, P; Kušpilić, G; La Ferla, R; Langone, L; Laroche, S; Lazar, L; Lefkaditou, E; Lemeshko, I E; Machias, A; Malej, A; Mazzocchi, M-G; Medinets, V; Mihalopoulos, N; Miserocchi, S; Moncheva, S; Mukhanov, V; Oaie, G; Oros, A; Öztürk, A A; Öztürk, B; Panayotova, M; Prospathopoulos, A; Radu, G; Raykov, V; Reglero, P; Reygondeau, G; Rougeron, N; Salihoglu, B; Sanchez-Vidal, A; Sannino, G; Santinelli, C; Secrieru, D; Shapiro, G; Simboura, N; Shiganova, T; Sprovieri, M; Stefanova, K; Streftaris, N; Tirelli, V; Tom, M; Topaloğlu, B; Topçu, N E; Tsagarakis, K; Tsangaris, C; Tserpes, G; Tuğrul, S; Uysal, Z; Vasile, D; Violaki, K; Xu, J; Yüksek, A; Papathanassiou, E

    2015-06-15

    PERSEUS project aims to identify the most relevant pressures exerted on the ecosystems of the Southern European Seas (SES), highlighting knowledge and data gaps that endanger the achievement of SES Good Environmental Status (GES) as mandated by the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). A complementary approach has been adopted, by a meta-analysis of existing literature on pressure/impact/knowledge gaps summarized in tables related to the MSFD descriptors, discriminating open waters from coastal areas. A comparative assessment of the Initial Assessments (IAs) for five SES countries has been also independently performed. The comparison between meta-analysis results and IAs shows similarities for coastal areas only. Major knowledge gaps have been detected for the biodiversity, marine food web, marine litter and underwater noise descriptors. The meta-analysis also allowed the identification of additional research themes targeting research topics that are requested to the achievement of GES. PMID:25892079

  8. A MSFD complementary approach for the assessment of pressures, knowledge and data gaps in Southern European Seas: The PERSEUS experience.

    PubMed

    Crise, A; Kaberi, H; Ruiz, J; Zatsepin, A; Arashkevich, E; Giani, M; Karageorgis, A P; Prieto, L; Pantazi, M; Gonzalez-Fernandez, D; Ribera d'Alcalà, M; Tornero, V; Vassilopoulou, V; Durrieu de Madron, X; Guieu, C; Puig, P; Zenetos, A; Andral, B; Angel, D; Altukhov, D; Ayata, S D; Aktan, Y; Balcıoğlu, E; Benedetti, F; Bouchoucha, M; Buia, M-C; Cadiou, J-F; Canals, M; Chakroun, M; Christou, E; Christidis, M G; Civitarese, G; Coatu, V; Corsini-Foka, M; Cozzi, S; Deidun, A; Dell'Aquila, A; Dogrammatzi, A; Dumitrache, C; Edelist, D; Ettahiri, O; Fonda-Umani, S; Gana, S; Galgani, F; Gasparini, S; Giannakourou, A; Gomoiu, M-T; Gubanova, A; Gücü, A-C; Gürses, Ö; Hanke, G; Hatzianestis, I; Herut, B; Hone, R; Huertas, E; Irisson, J-O; İşinibilir, M; Jimenez, J A; Kalogirou, S; Kapiris, K; Karamfilov, V; Kavadas, S; Keskin, Ç; Kideyş, A E; Kocak, M; Kondylatos, G; Kontogiannis, C; Kosyan, R; Koubbi, P; Kušpilić, G; La Ferla, R; Langone, L; Laroche, S; Lazar, L; Lefkaditou, E; Lemeshko, I E; Machias, A; Malej, A; Mazzocchi, M-G; Medinets, V; Mihalopoulos, N; Miserocchi, S; Moncheva, S; Mukhanov, V; Oaie, G; Oros, A; Öztürk, A A; Öztürk, B; Panayotova, M; Prospathopoulos, A; Radu, G; Raykov, V; Reglero, P; Reygondeau, G; Rougeron, N; Salihoglu, B; Sanchez-Vidal, A; Sannino, G; Santinelli, C; Secrieru, D; Shapiro, G; Simboura, N; Shiganova, T; Sprovieri, M; Stefanova, K; Streftaris, N; Tirelli, V; Tom, M; Topaloğlu, B; Topçu, N E; Tsagarakis, K; Tsangaris, C; Tserpes, G; Tuğrul, S; Uysal, Z; Vasile, D; Violaki, K; Xu, J; Yüksek, A; Papathanassiou, E

    2015-06-15

    PERSEUS project aims to identify the most relevant pressures exerted on the ecosystems of the Southern European Seas (SES), highlighting knowledge and data gaps that endanger the achievement of SES Good Environmental Status (GES) as mandated by the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). A complementary approach has been adopted, by a meta-analysis of existing literature on pressure/impact/knowledge gaps summarized in tables related to the MSFD descriptors, discriminating open waters from coastal areas. A comparative assessment of the Initial Assessments (IAs) for five SES countries has been also independently performed. The comparison between meta-analysis results and IAs shows similarities for coastal areas only. Major knowledge gaps have been detected for the biodiversity, marine food web, marine litter and underwater noise descriptors. The meta-analysis also allowed the identification of additional research themes targeting research topics that are requested to the achievement of GES.

  9. Earth observation for habitat mapping and biodiversity monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lang, Stefan; Mairota, Paola; Pernkopf, Lena; Schioppa, Emilio Padoa

    2015-05-01

    Biodiversity - the variety of life forms and our "natural capital and life-insurance" (European Commission, 2011) - is on decline (Isbell, 2010; Trochet and Schmeller, 2013), with consequences on ecosystem function and stability, and ultimately human well-being (Naeem et al., 2009). Since 1992, the International Convention on Biological Diversity, short CBD, has bundled the United Nations' joint effort to halt or at least lower the accelerated loss of biodiversity, but indeed it remains one of the key global challenges that requires a concerted, effective use of latest technology. As by the end of 2010 (the "International Year of Biodiversity") the global society became aware that the ambitious goal of "halting biodiversity" has not been reached, the importance of both observation and technology development became even more important.

  10. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure - assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kostoski, G.; Albrecht, C.; Trajanovski, S.; Wilke, T.

    2010-07-01

    Freshwater habitats and species living in freshwater are generally more prone to extinction than terrestrial or marine ones. Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are thus of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact. Lake Ohrid, the European biodiversity hotspot, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes. Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1) assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic) biodiversity, (2) summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3) outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species) as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1) watershed impacts, (2) agriculture and forestry, (3) tourism and population growth, (4) non-indigenous species, (5) habitat alteration or loss, (6) unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7) global climate change. Of the 11 IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) threat classes scored, seven have moderate and three severe impacts. These latter threat classes are energy production and mining, biological resource use, and pollution. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species measures, international conservation

  11. Understanding the Distribution of Marine Megafauna in the English Channel Region: Identifying Key Habitats for Conservation within the Busiest Seaway on Earth

    PubMed Central

    McClellan, Catherine M.; Brereton, Tom; Dell'Amico, Florence; Johns, David G.; Cucknell, Anna-C.; Patrick, Samantha C.; Penrose, Rod; Ridoux, Vincent; Solandt, Jean-Luc; Stephan, Eric; Votier, Stephen C.; Williams, Ruth; Godley, Brendan J.

    2014-01-01

    The temperate waters of the North-Eastern Atlantic have a long history of maritime resource richness and, as a result, the European Union is endeavouring to maintain regional productivity and biodiversity. At the intersection of these aims lies potential conflict, signalling the need for integrated, cross-border management approaches. This paper focuses on the marine megafauna of the region. This guild of consumers was formerly abundant, but is now depleted and protected under various national and international legislative structures. We present a meta-analysis of available megafauna datasets using presence-only distribution models to characterise suitable habitat and identify spatially-important regions within the English Channel and southern bight of the North Sea. The integration of studies from dedicated and opportunistic observer programmes in the United Kingdom and France provide a valuable perspective on the spatial and seasonal distribution of various taxonomic groups, including large pelagic fishes and sharks, marine mammals, seabirds and marine turtles. The Western English Channel emerged as a hotspot of biodiversity for megafauna, while species richness was low in the Eastern English Channel. Spatial conservation planning is complicated by the highly mobile nature of marine megafauna, however they are important components of the marine environment and understanding their distribution is a first crucial step toward their inclusion into marine ecosystem management. PMID:24586985

  12. Books, Biodiversity, and Beyond!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Governor, Donna; Helms, Sarah

    2007-01-01

    Reading in science class does not have to be boring, but it is no secret to students or teachers that textbooks are not much fun to read. It is always a challenge for teachers to find reading materials that would grab the interests of their students. In this article, the author relates how she used Biodiversity, a nonfiction book by Dorothy…

  13. Biodiversity conservation and NEPA

    SciTech Connect

    Southerland, M.T. )

    1993-01-01

    The Council of Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have recently developed new guidelines to facilitate the consideration of biodiversity in the preparation and review of environmental impact assessments. The purpose of these efforts is to facilitate the incorporation of biodiversity considerations into the ecological analyses of all federal agencies. Because federal decisions requiring environmental impact assessments under NEPA affect hundreds of millions of federal and non-federal lands and waters, improved consideration of the impacts of federal activities is essential to stemming the loss of biological diversity in the United States. The designation of ecosystems or habitats'' of concern is a useful first step identifying risks to biodiversity. After reviewing the status and trends of habitats within eight major regions of the US, the EPA guidelines identify habitats contributing to regional and global biodiversity such as remnant prairies, riparian habitats, and old-growth forests. This document also discusses how the impacts on habitats vary with the different activities of land conversion, timber harvesting, grazing, mining, and water management.

  14. Warfare in biodiversity hotspots.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Thor; Brooks, Thomas M; Da Fonseca, Gustavo A B; Hoffmann, Michael; Lamoreux, John F; Machlis, Gary; Mittermeier, Cristina G; Mittermeier, Russell A; Pilgrim, John D

    2009-06-01

    Conservation efforts are only as sustainable as the social and political context within which they take place. The weakening or collapse of sociopolitical frameworks during wartime can lead to habitat destruction and the erosion of conservation policies, but in some cases, may also confer ecological benefits through altered settlement patterns and reduced resource exploitation. Over 90% of the major armed conflicts between 1950 and 2000 occurred within countries containing biodiversity hotspots, and more than 80% took place directly within hotspot areas. Less than one-third of the 34 recognized hotspots escaped significant conflict during this period, and most suffered repeated episodes of violence. This pattern was remarkably consistent over these 5 decades. Evidence from the war-torn Eastern Afromontane hotspot suggests that biodiversity conservation is improved when international nongovernmental organizations support local protected area staff and remain engaged throughout the conflict. With biodiversity hotspots concentrated in politically volatile regions, the conservation community must maintain continuous involvement during periods of war, and biodiversity conservation should be incorporated into military, reconstruction, and humanitarian programs in the world's conflict zones. PMID:19236450

  15. Biodiversity in the Anthropocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ellis, E. C.

    2012-12-01

    Humans have altered or replaced native ecosystems across more than three quarters of the terrestrial biosphere, creating new global patterns of biodiversity as a result of native species extinctions, domestication and anthropogenic introductions of nonnative species. These anthropogenic global changes in biodiversity have been portrayed as resulting primarily from recent and unprecedented human disturbances that are potentially indicative of catastrophic changes in the Earth system. Yet anthropogenic changes in species richness and community structure caused by human populations and their use of land have been widespread and profound in many regions since before the Holocene, and have been sustained for millennia in many regions, especially in the Temperate Zone. Beyond the anthropogenic megafaunal extinctions of the Pleistocene, habitat loss and fragmentation by agricultural land use has been sustained throughout the Holocene in many biomes at levels theoretically associated with major species extinctions. Anthropogenic patterns of species extinction differ greatly among taxa, with mammals and other larger fauna showing the greatest impacts. However, spatially explicit observations and models of contemporary global patterns of vascular plant species richness confirm that while native losses are likely significant across at least half of Earth's ice-free land, species richness has increased overall in most regional landscapes, mostly because nonnative species invasions tend to exceed native losses. Effective stewardship of biodiversity in the Anthropocene will require integrated global frameworks for observing, modeling and forecasting anthropogenic biodiversity change processes within the novel biotic communities created and sustained by human systems.; Percentage of terrestrial biomes converted to agricultural land over time. ; Conceptual diagram of biodiversity patterns associated with variations in population density, land use and land cover.

  16. Placing biodiversity in ecosystem models without getting lost in translation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Queirós, Ana M.; Bruggeman, Jorn; Stephens, Nicholas; Artioli, Yuri; Butenschön, Momme; Blackford, Jeremy C.; Widdicombe, Stephen; Allen, J. Icarus; Somerfield, Paul J.

    2015-04-01

    A key challenge to progressing our understanding of biodiversity's role in the sustenance of ecosystem function is the extrapolation of the results of two decades of dedicated empirical research to regional, global and future landscapes. Ecosystem models provide a platform for this progression, potentially offering a holistic view of ecosystems where, guided by the mechanistic understanding of processes and their connection to the environment and biota, large-scale questions can be investigated. While the benefits of depicting biodiversity in such models are widely recognized, its application is limited by difficulties in the transfer of knowledge from small process oriented ecology into macro-scale modelling. Here, we build on previous work, breaking down key challenges of that knowledge transfer into a tangible framework, highlighting successful strategies that both modelling and ecology communities have developed to better interact with one another. We use a benthic and a pelagic case-study to illustrate how aspects of the links between biodiversity and ecosystem process have been depicted in marine ecosystem models (ERSEM and MIRO), from data, to conceptualisation and model development. We hope that this framework may help future interactions between biodiversity researchers and model developers by highlighting concrete solutions to common problems, and in this way contribute to the advance of the mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity in marine (and terrestrial) ecosystems.

  17. Evaluating biodiversity of mineral lands

    SciTech Connect

    Wade, G.L.; Tritton, L.M.

    1997-12-31

    Increasingly, lands intended for mining, or lands that have been mined and reclaimed, are being evaluated in terms of biological diversity (biodiversity). The concept of biodiversity includes die variety and number of living organisms, their organizations, and the environments that support them. This paper presents a framework for discussing and evaluating biodiversity and for constructing checklists for evaluating biodiversity before and after mining. This framework identifies some of the different types of biodiversity applicable to mineral lands, die ranges of scale at which they are applicable, and the social stakes and stakeholders relevant across scale and diversity types.

  18. Comparative analysis of European wide marine ecosystem shifts: a large-scale approach for developing the basis for ecosystem-based management.

    PubMed

    Möllmann, Christian; Conversi, Alessandra; Edwards, Martin

    2011-08-23

    Abrupt and rapid ecosystem shifts (where major reorganizations of food-web and community structures occur), commonly termed regime shifts, are changes between contrasting and persisting states of ecosystem structure and function. These shifts have been increasingly reported for exploited marine ecosystems around the world from the North Pacific to the North Atlantic. Understanding the drivers and mechanisms leading to marine ecosystem shifts is crucial in developing adaptive management strategies to achieve sustainable exploitation of marine ecosystems. An international workshop on a comparative approach to analysing these marine ecosystem shifts was held at Hamburg University, Institute for Hydrobiology and Fisheries Science, Germany on 1-3 November 2010. Twenty-seven scientists from 14 countries attended the meeting, representing specialists from seven marine regions, including the Baltic Sea, the North Sea, the Barents Sea, the Black Sea, the Mediterranean Sea, the Bay of Biscay and the Scotian Shelf off the Canadian East coast. The goal of the workshop was to conduct the first large-scale comparison of marine ecosystem regime shifts across multiple regional areas, in order to support the development of ecosystem-based management strategies.

  19. European Atlantic: the hottest oil spill hotspot worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vieites, David R.; Nieto-Román, Sandra; Palanca, Antonio; Ferrer, Xavier; Vences, Miguel

    2004-11-01

    Oil spills caused by maritime transport of petroleum products are still an important source of ocean pollution, especially in main production areas and along major transport routes. We here provide a historical and geographic analysis of the major oil spills (>700 t) since 1960. Spills were recorded from several key marine ecosystems and marine biodiversity hotspots. The past four decades have been characterized by an overall decrease in the number of accidents and tonnes of oil spilled in the sea, but this trend was less distinct in the European Atlantic area. Recent black tides from the Erika and Prestige vessels provided new evidence for the high risk of accidents with serious ecological impact in this area, which according to our analysis is historically the most important oil spill hotspot worldwide. The English Channel and waters around Galicia in Spain were the areas with most accidents. Maritime transport in European Atlantic waters has been predicted to continue increasing. Together with our own results this suggests that, in addition to measures for increased traffic safety, deployment of emergency capacities in the spill hotspot areas may be crucial for a sustainable conservation of sea resources and ecosystems.

  20. European Atlantic: the hottest oil spill hotspot worldwide.

    PubMed

    Vieites, David R; Nieto-Román, Sandra; Palanca, Antonio; Ferrer, Xavier; Vences, Miguel

    2004-11-01

    Oil spills caused by maritime transport of petroleum products are still an important source of ocean pollution, especially in main production areas and along major transport routes. We here provide a historical and geographic analysis of the major oil spills (>700 t) since 1960. Spills were recorded from several key marine ecosystems and marine biodiversity hotspots. The past four decades have been characterized by an overall decrease in the number of accidents and tones of oil spilled in the sea, but this trend was less distinct in the European Atlantic area. Recent black tides from the Erika and Prestige vessels provided new evidence for the high risk of accidents with serious ecological impact in this area, which according to our analysis is historically the most important oil spill hotspot worldwide. The English Channel and waters around Galicia in Spain were the areas with most accidents. Maritime transport in European Atlantic waters has been predicted to continue increasing. Together with our own results this suggests that, in addition to measures for increased traffic safety, deployment of emergency capacities in the spill hotspot areas may be crucial for a sustainable conservation of sea resources and ecosystems. PMID:15490095

  1. Environmental services of biodiversity.

    PubMed Central

    Myers, N

    1996-01-01

    Humans derive many utilitarian benefits from the environmental services of biotas and ecosystems. This is often advanced as a prime argument to support conservation of biodiversity. There is much to be said for this viewpoint, as is documented in this paper through a summary assessment of several categories of environmental services, including regulation of climate and biogeochemical cycles, hydrological functions, soil protection, crop pollination, pest control, recreation and ecotourism, and a number of miscellaneous services. It is shown that the services are indeed significant, whether in ecological or economic senses. Particularly important is the factor of ecosystem resilience, which appears to underpin many of the services. It should not be supposed, however, that environmental services stem necessarily and exclusively from biodiversity. While biodiversity often plays a key role, the services can also derive from biomass and other attributes of biotas. The paper concludes with a brief overview assessment of economic values at issue and an appraisal of the implications for conservation planning. PMID:11607645

  2. Biodiversity, globalisation and poverty.

    PubMed

    Olorode, Omotoye

    2007-06-10

    The erosion of the stock of biodiversity on earth developed historically with the so-called voyages of discovery (and their antecedents), colonial conquests and the accompanying movements of natural products and peoples, i.e. movements of populations and genetic materials. These events happened with the development of technology and the so-called conquest, by man, of his environment and the appertaining development of specialization not only in industry but also in agriculture and environmental management. The development of specialization resulted in the homogenization of processes, products, inputs and input industries; this increased homogenization had the corollary of arrested heterogeneity across the board; what they call globalization is part of this process. The efficiency of homogenization, however, engendered new problems of fragility of human environment and of production and social relations and processes. The effects of this complex situation, in general terms and in terms of biodiversity in particular, have been more devastating for the more vulnerable regions, classes of people, and peoples of the world. A continuous rethinking of the epistemology and the social and political bases of existing policies on environment in general, and of biodiversity conservation in particular, has become imperative.

  3. Global Biodiversity and the Ancient Carbon Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rothman, D. H.

    2001-05-01

    Paleontological data for the diversity of marine animals and land plants are shown to correlate significantly with a concurrent measure of stable carbon isotope fractionation for approximately the last 400 million years. The correlations can be deduced from the assumption that increasing plant diversity led to increasing chemical weathering of rocks, and therefore an increasing flux of carbon from the atmosphere to rocks, and nutrients from the continents to the oceans. The CO2 concentration dependence of photosynthetic carbon isotope fractionation then indicates that the diversification of land plants led to decreasing CO2 levels, while the diversification of marine animals derived from increasing nutrient availability. Under the explicit assumption that global biodiversity grows with global biomass, the conservation of carbon shows that the long-term fluctuations of CO2 levels were dominated by complementary changes in the biological and fluid reservoirs of carbon while the much larger geological reservoir remained relatively constant in size. As a consequence, the paleontological record of biodiversity provides an indirect estimate of the fluctuations of ancient CO2 levels.

  4. Global biodiversity and the ancient carbon cycle

    PubMed Central

    Rothman, Daniel H.

    2001-01-01

    Paleontological data for the diversity of marine animals and land plants are shown to correlate significantly with a concurrent measure of stable carbon isotope fractionation for approximately the last 400 million years. The correlations can be deduced from the assumption that increasing plant diversity led to increasing chemical weathering of rocks and therefore an increasing flux of carbon from the atmosphere to rocks, and nutrients from the continents to the oceans. The CO2 concentration dependence of photosynthetic carbon isotope fractionation then indicates that the diversification of land plants led to decreasing CO2 levels, while the diversification of marine animals derived from increasing nutrient availability. Under the explicit assumption that global biodiversity grows with global biomass, the conservation of carbon shows that the long-term fluctuations of CO2 levels were dominated by complementary changes in the biological and fluid reservoirs of carbon, while the much larger geological reservoir remained relatively constant in size. As a consequence, the paleontological record of biodiversity provides an indirect estimate of the fluctuations of ancient CO2 levels. PMID:11296281

  5. Biodiversity funds and conservation needs in the EU under climate change

    PubMed Central

    Lung, Tobias; Meller, Laura; van Teeffelen, Astrid J.A.; Thuiller, Wilfried; Cabeza, Mar

    2014-01-01

    Despite ambitious biodiversity policy goals, less than a fifth of the European Union’s (EU) legally protected species and habitats show a favorable conservation status. The recent EU biodiversity strategy recognizes that climate change adds to the challenge of halting biodiversity loss, and that an optimal distribution of financial resources is needed. Here, we analyze recent EU biodiversity funding from a climate change perspective. We compare the allocation of funds to the distribution of both current conservation priorities (within and beyond Natura 2000) and future conservation needs at the level of NUTS-2 regions, using modelled bird distributions as indicators of conservation value. We find that funding is reasonably well aligned with current conservation efforts but poorly fit with future needs under climate change, indicating obstacles for implementing adaptation measures. We suggest revising EU biodiversity funding instruments for the 2014-2020 budget period to better account for potential climate change impacts on biodiversity. PMID:25264456

  6. A one ocean model of biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Dor, Ronald K.; Fennel, Katja; Berghe, Edward Vanden

    2009-09-01

    The history of life is written in the ocean, and the history of the ocean is written in DNA. Geologists have shown us that hundreds of millions of years of ocean history can be revealed from records of a single phylum in cores of mud from abyssal plains. We are now accumulating genetic tools to unravel the relationships of hundreds of phyla to track this history back billions of years. The technologies demonstrated by the Census of Marine Life (CoML) mean that the ocean is no longer opaque or unknowable. The secrets of the largest component of the biosphere are knowable. The cost of understanding the history of ocean life is not cheap, but it is also not prohibitive. A transparent, open ocean is available for us to use to understand ourselves. This article develops a model of biodiversity equilibration in a single, physically static ocean as a step towards biodiversity in physically complex real oceans. It attempts to be quantitative and to simultaneously account for biodiversity patterns from bacteria to whales focusing on emergent properties rather than details. Biodiversity reflects long-term survival of DNA sequences, stabilizing "ecosystem services" despite environmental change. In the ocean, mechanisms for ensuring survival range from prokaryotes maintaining low concentrations of replicable DNA throughout the ocean volume, anticipating local change, to animals whose mobility increases with mass to avoid local change through movement. Whales can reach any point in the ocean in weeks, but prokaryotes can only diffuse. The high metabolic costs of mobility are offset by the dramatically lower number of DNA replicates required to ensure survival. Reproduction rates probably scale more or less inversely with body mass. Bacteria respond in a week, plankton in a year, whales in a century. We generally lack coherent theories to explain the origins of animals (metazoans) and the contributions of biodiversity to ecosystems. The One Ocean Model suggests that mobile

  7. From Sea to Sea: Canada's Three Oceans of Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Archambault, Philippe; Snelgrove, Paul V. R.; Fisher, Jonathan A. D.; Gagnon, Jean-Marc; Garbary, David J.; Harvey, Michel; Kenchington, Ellen L.; Lesage, Véronique; Levesque, Mélanie; Lovejoy, Connie; Mackas, David L.; McKindsey, Christopher W.; Nelson, John R.; Pepin, Pierre; Piché, Laurence; Poulin, Michel

    2010-01-01

    Evaluating and understanding biodiversity in marine ecosystems are both necessary and challenging for conservation. This paper compiles and summarizes current knowledge of the diversity of marine taxa in Canada's three oceans while recognizing that this compilation is incomplete and will change in the future. That Canada has the longest coastline in the world and incorporates distinctly different biogeographic provinces and ecoregions (e.g., temperate through ice-covered areas) constrains this analysis. The taxonomic groups presented here include microbes, phytoplankton, macroalgae, zooplankton, benthic infauna, fishes, and marine mammals. The minimum number of species or taxa compiled here is 15,988 for the three Canadian oceans. However, this number clearly underestimates in several ways the total number of taxa present. First, there are significant gaps in the published literature. Second, the diversity of many habitats has not been compiled for all taxonomic groups (e.g., intertidal rocky shores, deep sea), and data compilations are based on short-term, directed research programs or longer-term monitoring activities with limited spatial resolution. Third, the biodiversity of large organisms is well known, but this is not true of smaller organisms. Finally, the greatest constraint on this summary is the willingness and capacity of those who collected the data to make it available to those interested in biodiversity meta-analyses. Confirmation of identities and intercomparison of studies are also constrained by the disturbing rate of decline in the number of taxonomists and systematists specializing on marine taxa in Canada. This decline is mostly the result of retirements of current specialists and to a lack of training and employment opportunities for new ones. Considering the difficulties encountered in compiling an overview of biogeographic data and the diversity of species or taxa in Canada's three oceans, this synthesis is intended to serve as a

  8. School Projects for Monitoring the State of the Marine Environment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benkendorff, Kirsten

    Australia's marine environment hosts a high level of diverse endemic species along with some of the highest biodiversity in the world. Two-thirds of the population of Australia are living in coastal areas and can be considered a threat to marine life which is very vulnerable to human impacts. Although marine environments conserve high economic…

  9. Biodiversity of rangelands

    SciTech Connect

    West, N.E. )

    1993-01-01

    Biodiversity is a multifaceted phenomenon involving the variety of organisms present, the genetic differences among them, and the communities, ecosystems, and landscape patterns in which they occur. Society will increasingly value biodiversity and influence the passage of laws and writing of regulations involving biodiversity which rangeland managers will have to abide by over the coming decades. Even private and developing world rangelands will be affected. While taxonomic knowledge of vertebrates and vascular plants and their abundance, rarity, and distribution, in the developed nations is generally adequate, the same cannot be said of the developing world. Furthermore, adequate knowledge of invertebrates, nonvascular plants, and microbes is deficient everywhere. Although the basis of variation at all higher levels, genetic variation within rangeland species, even the major ones, has barely been assessed. Obtaining statistically adequate data on populations of rare species that are small and secretive is well nigh impossible. There are many means of measuring community diversity, but all of them are value laden. That is, choice of variables to measure and how they are indexed betrays what one considers are important. One should be more forthright in stating to the users the biases of these methods. There are many other, more useful ways to describe community-level diversity besides the traditional focus on species. Ungulate grazing is an important process in many ecosystems. Thus, removal of grazing destabilizes some systems. Livestock grazing will actually increase the chances of survival of some species. Sustainable development will depend on finding balance between use and protection, from range sites to landscapes, and even on a global basis. 120 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  10. Biofuels and biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Wiens, John; Fargione, Joseph; Hill, Jason

    2011-06-01

    The recent increase in liquid biofuel production has stemmed from a desire to reduce dependence on foreign oil, mitigate rising energy prices, promote rural economic development, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The growth of this industry has important implications for biodiversity, the effects of which depend largely on which biofuel feedstocks are being grown and the spatial extent and landscape pattern of land requirements for growing these feedstocks. Current biofuel production occurs largely on croplands that have long been in agricultural production. The additional land area required for future biofuels production can be met in part by reclaiming reserve or abandoned croplands and by extending cropping into lands formerly deemed marginal for agriculture. In the United States, many such marginal lands have been enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), providing important habitat for grassland species. The demand for corn ethanOl has changed agricultural commodity economics dramatically, already contributing to loss of CRP lands as contracts expire and lands are returned to agricultural production. Nevertheless, there are ways in which biofuels can be developed to enhance their coexistence with biodiversity. Landscape heterogeneity can be improved by interspersion of land uses, which is easier around facilities with smaller or more varied feedstock demands. The development of biofuel feedstocks that yield high net energy returns with minimal carbon debts or that do not require additional land for production, such as residues and wastes, should be encouraged. Competing land uses, including both biofuel production and biodiversity protection, should be subjected to comprehensive cost-benefit analysis, so that incentives can be directed where they will do the most good.

  11. Biofuels and biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Wiens, John; Fargione, Joseph; Hill, Jason

    2011-06-01

    The recent increase in liquid biofuel production has stemmed from a desire to reduce dependence on foreign oil, mitigate rising energy prices, promote rural economic development, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The growth of this industry has important implications for biodiversity, the effects of which depend largely on which biofuel feedstocks are being grown and the spatial extent and landscape pattern of land requirements for growing these feedstocks. Current biofuel production occurs largely on croplands that have long been in agricultural production. The additional land area required for future biofuels production can be met in part by reclaiming reserve or abandoned croplands and by extending cropping into lands formerly deemed marginal for agriculture. In the United States, many such marginal lands have been enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), providing important habitat for grassland species. The demand for corn ethanOl has changed agricultural commodity economics dramatically, already contributing to loss of CRP lands as contracts expire and lands are returned to agricultural production. Nevertheless, there are ways in which biofuels can be developed to enhance their coexistence with biodiversity. Landscape heterogeneity can be improved by interspersion of land uses, which is easier around facilities with smaller or more varied feedstock demands. The development of biofuel feedstocks that yield high net energy returns with minimal carbon debts or that do not require additional land for production, such as residues and wastes, should be encouraged. Competing land uses, including both biofuel production and biodiversity protection, should be subjected to comprehensive cost-benefit analysis, so that incentives can be directed where they will do the most good. PMID:21774415

  12. Soil biodiversity and human health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wall, Diana H.; Nielsen, Uffe N.; Six, Johan

    2015-12-01

    Soil biodiversity is increasingly recognized as providing benefits to human health because it can suppress disease-causing soil organisms and provide clean air, water and food. Poor land-management practices and environmental change are, however, affecting belowground communities globally, and the resulting declines in soil biodiversity reduce and impair these benefits. Importantly, current research indicates that soil biodiversity can be maintained and partially restored if managed sustainably. Promoting the ecological complexity and robustness of soil biodiversity through improved management practices represents an underutilized resource with the ability to improve human health.

  13. Soil biodiversity and human health.

    PubMed

    Wall, Diana H; Nielsen, Uffe N; Six, Johan

    2015-12-01

    Soil biodiversity is increasingly recognized as providing benefits to human health because it can suppress disease-causing soil organisms and provide clean air, water and food. Poor land-management practices and environmental change are, however, affecting belowground communities globally, and the resulting declines in soil biodiversity reduce and impair these benefits. Importantly, current research indicates that soil biodiversity can be maintained and partially restored if managed sustainably. Promoting the ecological complexity and robustness of soil biodiversity through improved management practices represents an underutilized resource with the ability to improve human health.

  14. Soil biodiversity and human health.

    PubMed

    Wall, Diana H; Nielsen, Uffe N; Six, Johan

    2015-12-01

    Soil biodiversity is increasingly recognized as providing benefits to human health because it can suppress disease-causing soil organisms and provide clean air, water and food. Poor land-management practices and environmental change are, however, affecting belowground communities globally, and the resulting declines in soil biodiversity reduce and impair these benefits. Importantly, current research indicates that soil biodiversity can be maintained and partially restored if managed sustainably. Promoting the ecological complexity and robustness of soil biodiversity through improved management practices represents an underutilized resource with the ability to improve human health. PMID:26595276

  15. Recovering plant biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Studying recovering plant biodiversity on Mount Pinatubo may provide valuable insights that improve our understanding of recovery of other ecosystems following disturbances of all types. Ongoing sheet and rill erosion coupled with mass waste events in the unstable pyroclastic flow deposits persist, effectively re-setting primary succession at micro-landscape scale without affecting habitat level diversity. Spatial factors and micro-habitat diversity may exert more control over continued succession as the riparian systems become more deeply dissected and complex. The number of taxa within functional groups and conservation concerns are botanical issues that deserve further research. PMID:22019638

  16. Structural Analysis of Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Sirovich, Lawrence; Stoeckle, Mark Y.; Zhang, Yu

    2010-01-01

    Large, recently-available genomic databases cover a wide range of life forms, suggesting opportunity for insights into genetic structure of biodiversity. In this study we refine our recently-described technique using indicator vectors to analyze and visualize nucleotide sequences. The indicator vector approach generates correlation matrices, dubbed Klee diagrams, which represent a novel way of assembling and viewing large genomic datasets. To explore its potential utility, here we apply the improved algorithm to a collection of almost 17000 DNA barcode sequences covering 12 widely-separated animal taxa, demonstrating that indicator vectors for classification gave correct assignment in all 11000 test cases. Indicator vector analysis revealed discontinuities corresponding to species- and higher-level taxonomic divisions, suggesting an efficient approach to classification of organisms from poorly-studied groups. As compared to standard distance metrics, indicator vectors preserve diagnostic character probabilities, enable automated classification of test sequences, and generate high-information density single-page displays. These results support application of indicator vectors for comparative analysis of large nucleotide data sets and raise prospect of gaining insight into broad-scale patterns in the genetic structure of biodiversity. PMID:20195371

  17. Conservation of biodiversity through taxonomy, data publication, and collaborative infrastructures.

    PubMed

    Costello, Mark J; Vanhoorne, Bart; Appeltans, Ward

    2015-08-01

    Taxonomy is the foundation of biodiversity science because it furthers discovery of new species. Globally, there have never been so many people involved in naming species new to science. The number of new marine species described per decade has never been greater. Nevertheless, it is estimated that tens of thousands of marine species, and hundreds of thousands of terrestrial species, are yet to be discovered; many of which may already be in specimen collections. However, naming species is only a first step in documenting knowledge about their biology, biogeography, and ecology. Considering the threats to biodiversity, new knowledge of existing species and discovery of undescribed species and their subsequent study are urgently required. To accelerate this research, we recommend, and cite examples of, more and better communication: use of collaborative online databases; easier access to knowledge and specimens; production of taxonomic revisions and species identification guides; engagement of nonspecialists; and international collaboration. "Data-sharing" should be abandoned in favor of mandated data publication by the conservation science community. Such a step requires support from peer reviewers, editors, journals, and conservation organizations. Online data publication infrastructures (e.g., Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Ocean Biogeographic Information System) illustrate gaps in biodiversity sampling and may provide common ground for long-term international collaboration between scientists and conservation organizations. PMID:25858475

  18. Conservation of biodiversity through taxonomy, data publication, and collaborative infrastructures.

    PubMed

    Costello, Mark J; Vanhoorne, Bart; Appeltans, Ward

    2015-08-01

    Taxonomy is the foundation of biodiversity science because it furthers discovery of new species. Globally, there have never been so many people involved in naming species new to science. The number of new marine species described per decade has never been greater. Nevertheless, it is estimated that tens of thousands of marine species, and hundreds of thousands of terrestrial species, are yet to be discovered; many of which may already be in specimen collections. However, naming species is only a first step in documenting knowledge about their biology, biogeography, and ecology. Considering the threats to biodiversity, new knowledge of existing species and discovery of undescribed species and their subsequent study are urgently required. To accelerate this research, we recommend, and cite examples of, more and better communication: use of collaborative online databases; easier access to knowledge and specimens; production of taxonomic revisions and species identification guides; engagement of nonspecialists; and international collaboration. "Data-sharing" should be abandoned in favor of mandated data publication by the conservation science community. Such a step requires support from peer reviewers, editors, journals, and conservation organizations. Online data publication infrastructures (e.g., Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Ocean Biogeographic Information System) illustrate gaps in biodiversity sampling and may provide common ground for long-term international collaboration between scientists and conservation organizations.

  19. Net present biodiversity value and the design of biodiversity offsets.

    PubMed

    Overton, Jacob McC; Stephens, R T Theo; Ferrier, Simon

    2013-02-01

    There is an urgent need to develop sound theory and practice for biodiversity offsets to provide a better basis for offset multipliers, to improve accounting for time delays in offset repayments, and to develop a common framework for evaluating in-kind and out-of-kind offsets. Here, we apply concepts and measures from systematic conservation planning and financial accounting to provide a basis for determining equity across type (of biodiversity), space, and time. We introduce net present biodiversity value (NPBV) as a theoretical and practical measure for defining the offset required to achieve no-net-loss. For evaluating equity in type and space we use measures of biodiversity value from systematic conservation planning. Time discount rates are used to address risk of non-repayment, and loss of utility. We illustrate these concepts and measures with two examples of biodiversity impact-offset transactions. Considerable further work is required to understand the characteristics of these approaches.

  20. Net present biodiversity value and the design of biodiversity offsets.

    PubMed

    Overton, Jacob McC; Stephens, R T Theo; Ferrier, Simon

    2013-02-01

    There is an urgent need to develop sound theory and practice for biodiversity offsets to provide a better basis for offset multipliers, to improve accounting for time delays in offset repayments, and to develop a common framework for evaluating in-kind and out-of-kind offsets. Here, we apply concepts and measures from systematic conservation planning and financial accounting to provide a basis for determining equity across type (of biodiversity), space, and time. We introduce net present biodiversity value (NPBV) as a theoretical and practical measure for defining the offset required to achieve no-net-loss. For evaluating equity in type and space we use measures of biodiversity value from systematic conservation planning. Time discount rates are used to address risk of non-repayment, and loss of utility. We illustrate these concepts and measures with two examples of biodiversity impact-offset transactions. Considerable further work is required to understand the characteristics of these approaches. PMID:22956430

  1. Biodiversity: Who Knows, Who Cares?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zemits, Birut

    2006-01-01

    Biodiversity is an abstract concept, attracting various responses from different people according to where they have come from and what ecosystems they have been closely linked to. In theory, most people would agree that protecting biodiversity is an important process, but in practice, few people commit to actions on a local level. This paper…

  2. Undergraduate Students' Attitudes toward Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Hui-Ju; Lin, Yu-Teh Kirk

    2014-01-01

    The study investigated American and Taiwan undergraduate students' attitudes toward biodiversity. The survey questionnaire consisted of statements prompted by the question "To what extent do you agree with the following statements about problems with the biodiversity issues." Students indicated strongly disagree, disagree, agree,…

  3. Biodiversity: past, present, and future

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sepkoski, J. J. Jr; Sepkoski JJ, J. r. (Principal Investigator)

    1997-01-01

    Data from the fossil record are used to illustrate biodiversity in the past and estimate modern biodiversity and loss. This data is used to compare current rates of extinction with past extinction events. Paleontologists are encouraged to use this data to understand the course and consequences of current losses and to share this knowledge with researchers interested in conservation and ecology.

  4. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Chris D; Anderson, Barbara J; Moilanen, Atte; Eigenbrod, Felix; Heinemeyer, Andreas; Quaife, Tristan; Roy, David B; Gillings, Simon; Armsworth, Paul R; Gaston, Kevin J

    2013-05-01

    Climate change is leading to the development of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies that are likely to have substantial impacts on global biodiversity. Of these, approaches to maintain carbon within existing natural ecosystems could have particularly large benefits for biodiversity. However, the geographical distributions of terrestrial carbon stocks and biodiversity differ. Using conservation planning analyses for the New World and Britain, we conclude that a carbon-only strategy would not be effective at conserving biodiversity, as have previous studies. Nonetheless, we find that a combined carbon-biodiversity strategy could simultaneously protect 90% of carbon stocks (relative to a carbon-only conservation strategy) and > 90% of the biodiversity (relative to a biodiversity-only strategy) in both regions. This combined approach encapsulates the principle of complementarity, whereby locations that contain different sets of species are prioritised, and hence disproportionately safeguard localised species that are not protected effectively by carbon-only strategies. It is efficient because localised species are concentrated into small parts of the terrestrial land surface, whereas carbon is somewhat more evenly distributed; and carbon stocks protected in one location are equivalent to those protected elsewhere. Efficient compromises can only be achieved when biodiversity and carbon are incorporated together within a spatial planning process.

  5. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Chris D; Anderson, Barbara J; Moilanen, Atte; Eigenbrod, Felix; Heinemeyer, Andreas; Quaife, Tristan; Roy, David B; Gillings, Simon; Armsworth, Paul R; Gaston, Kevin J

    2013-05-01

    Climate change is leading to the development of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies that are likely to have substantial impacts on global biodiversity. Of these, approaches to maintain carbon within existing natural ecosystems could have particularly large benefits for biodiversity. However, the geographical distributions of terrestrial carbon stocks and biodiversity differ. Using conservation planning analyses for the New World and Britain, we conclude that a carbon-only strategy would not be effective at conserving biodiversity, as have previous studies. Nonetheless, we find that a combined carbon-biodiversity strategy could simultaneously protect 90% of carbon stocks (relative to a carbon-only conservation strategy) and > 90% of the biodiversity (relative to a biodiversity-only strategy) in both regions. This combined approach encapsulates the principle of complementarity, whereby locations that contain different sets of species are prioritised, and hence disproportionately safeguard localised species that are not protected effectively by carbon-only strategies. It is efficient because localised species are concentrated into small parts of the terrestrial land surface, whereas carbon is somewhat more evenly distributed; and carbon stocks protected in one location are equivalent to those protected elsewhere. Efficient compromises can only be achieved when biodiversity and carbon are incorporated together within a spatial planning process. PMID:23279784

  6. Systematics and the biodiversity crisis

    SciTech Connect

    Savage, J.M.

    1995-11-01

    This article discusses the importance of systematics in evaluating the global biodiversity crisis. Topics covered include the following: what systematic biology is; the diversity of species and higher taxa; biodiversity undersiege; systematics and conservation; systematics and global climatic change. 28 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  7. Mesozoic marine tetrapod diversity: mass extinctions and temporal heterogeneity in geological megabiases affecting vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Benson, Roger B J; Butler, Richard J; Lindgren, Johan; Smith, Adam S

    2010-03-22

    The fossil record is our only direct means for evaluating shifts in biodiversity through Earth's history. However, analyses of fossil marine invertebrates have demonstrated that geological megabiases profoundly influence fossil preservation and discovery, obscuring true diversity signals. Comparable studies of vertebrate palaeodiversity patterns remain in their infancy. A new species-level dataset of Mesozoic marine tetrapod occurrences was compared with a proxy for temporal variation in the volume and facies diversity of fossiliferous rock (number of marine fossiliferous formations: FMF). A strong correlation between taxic diversity and FMF is present during the Cretaceous. Weak or no correlation of Jurassic data suggests a qualitatively different sampling regime resulting from five apparent peaks in Triassic-Jurassic diversity. These correspond to a small number of European formations that have been the subject of intensive collecting, and represent 'Lagerstätten effects'. Consideration of sampling biases allows re-evaluation of proposed mass extinction events. Marine tetrapod diversity declined during the Carnian or Norian. However, the proposed end-Triassic extinction event cannot be recognized with confidence. Some evidence supports an extinction event near the Jurassic/Cretaceous boundary, but the proposed end-Cenomanian extinction is probably an artefact of poor sampling. Marine tetrapod diversity underwent a long-term decline prior to the Cretaceous-Palaeogene extinction.

  8. Mesozoic marine tetrapod diversity: mass extinctions and temporal heterogeneity in geological megabiases affecting vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Benson, Roger B J; Butler, Richard J; Lindgren, Johan; Smith, Adam S

    2010-03-22

    The fossil record is our only direct means for evaluating shifts in biodiversity through Earth's history. However, analyses of fossil marine invertebrates have demonstrated that geological megabiases profoundly influence fossil preservation and discovery, obscuring true diversity signals. Comparable studies of vertebrate palaeodiversity patterns remain in their infancy. A new species-level dataset of Mesozoic marine tetrapod occurrences was compared with a proxy for temporal variation in the volume and facies diversity of fossiliferous rock (number of marine fossiliferous formations: FMF). A strong correlation between taxic diversity and FMF is present during the Cretaceous. Weak or no correlation of Jurassic data suggests a qualitatively different sampling regime resulting from five apparent peaks in Triassic-Jurassic diversity. These correspond to a small number of European formations that have been the subject of intensive collecting, and represent 'Lagerstätten effects'. Consideration of sampling biases allows re-evaluation of proposed mass extinction events. Marine tetrapod diversity declined during the Carnian or Norian. However, the proposed end-Triassic extinction event cannot be recognized with confidence. Some evidence supports an extinction event near the Jurassic/Cretaceous boundary, but the proposed end-Cenomanian extinction is probably an artefact of poor sampling. Marine tetrapod diversity underwent a long-term decline prior to the Cretaceous-Palaeogene extinction. PMID:19923126

  9. Biodiversity on Swedish pastures: estimating biodiversity production costs.

    PubMed

    Nilsson, Fredrik Olof Laurentius

    2009-01-01

    This paper estimates the costs of producing biological diversity on Swedish permanent grasslands. A simple model is introduced where biodiversity on pastures is produced using grazing animals. On the pastures, the grazing animals create a sufficient grazing pressure to lead to an environment that suits many rare and red-listed species. Two types of pastures are investigated: semi-natural and cultivated. Biological diversity produced on a pasture is estimated by combining a biodiversity indicator, which measures the quality of the land, with the size of the pasture. Biodiversity is, in this context, a quantitative measure where a given quantity can be produced either by small area with high quality or a larger area with lower quality. Two areas in different parts of Sweden are investigated. Box-Cox transformations, which provide flexible functional forms, are used in the empirical analysis and the results indicate that the biodiversity production costs differ between the regions. The major contribution of this paper is that it develops and tests a method of estimating biodiversity production costs on permanent pastures when biodiversity quality differs between pastures. If the method were to be used with cost data, that were more thoroughly collected and covered additional production areas, biodiversity cost functions could be estimated and used in applied policy work. PMID:18079049

  10. Biodiversity on Swedish pastures: estimating biodiversity production costs.

    PubMed

    Nilsson, Fredrik Olof Laurentius

    2009-01-01

    This paper estimates the costs of producing biological diversity on Swedish permanent grasslands. A simple model is introduced where biodiversity on pastures is produced using grazing animals. On the pastures, the grazing animals create a sufficient grazing pressure to lead to an environment that suits many rare and red-listed species. Two types of pastures are investigated: semi-natural and cultivated. Biological diversity produced on a pasture is estimated by combining a biodiversity indicator, which measures the quality of the land, with the size of the pasture. Biodiversity is, in this context, a quantitative measure where a given quantity can be produced either by small area with high quality or a larger area with lower quality. Two areas in different parts of Sweden are investigated. Box-Cox transformations, which provide flexible functional forms, are used in the empirical analysis and the results indicate that the biodiversity production costs differ between the regions. The major contribution of this paper is that it develops and tests a method of estimating biodiversity production costs on permanent pastures when biodiversity quality differs between pastures. If the method were to be used with cost data, that were more thoroughly collected and covered additional production areas, biodiversity cost functions could be estimated and used in applied policy work.

  11. Detection of a diverse marine fish fauna using environmental DNA from seawater samples.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Philip Francis; Kielgast, Jos; Iversen, Lars Lønsmann; Møller, Peter Rask; Rasmussen, Morten; Willerslev, Eske

    2012-01-01

    Marine ecosystems worldwide are under threat with many fish species and populations suffering from human over-exploitation. This is greatly impacting global biodiversity, economy and human health. Intriguingly, marine fish are largely surveyed using selective and invasive methods, which are mostly limited to commercial species, and restricted to particular areas with favourable conditions. Furthermore, misidentification of species represents a major problem. Here, we investigate the potential of using metabarcoding of environmental DNA (eDNA) obtained directly from seawater samples to account for marine fish biodiversity. This eDNA approach has recently been used successfully in freshwater environments, but never in marine settings. We isolate eDNA from ½-litre seawater samples collected in a temperate marine ecosystem in Denmark. Using next-generation DNA sequencing of PCR amplicons, we obtain eDNA from 15 different fish species, including both important consumption species, as well as species rarely or never recorded by conventional monitoring. We also detect eDNA from a rare vagrant species in the area; European pilchard (Sardina pilchardus). Additionally, we detect four bird species. Records in national databases confirmed the occurrence of all detected species. To investigate the efficiency of the eDNA approach, we compared its performance with 9 methods conventionally used in marine fish surveys. Promisingly, eDNA covered the fish diversity better than or equal to any of the applied conventional methods. Our study demonstrates that even small samples of seawater contain eDNA from a wide range of local fish species. Finally, in order to examine the potential dispersal of eDNA in oceans, we performed an experiment addressing eDNA degradation in seawater, which shows that even small (100-bp) eDNA fragments degrades beyond detectability within days. Although further studies are needed to validate the eDNA approach in varying environmental conditions, our

  12. The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to

  13. Biodiversity in environmental assessment-current practice and tools for prediction

    SciTech Connect

    Gontier, Mikael . E-mail: gontier@kth.se; Balfors, Berit . E-mail: balfors@kth.se; Moertberg, Ulla . E-mail: mortberg@kth.se

    2006-04-15

    Habitat loss and fragmentation are major threats to biodiversity. Environmental impact assessment and strategic environmental assessment are essential instruments used in physical planning to address such problems. Yet there are no well-developed methods for quantifying and predicting impacts of fragmentation on biodiversity. In this study, a literature review was conducted on GIS-based ecological models that have potential as prediction tools for biodiversity assessment. Further, a review of environmental impact statements for road and railway projects from four European countries was performed, to study how impact prediction concerning biodiversity issues was addressed. The results of the study showed the existing gap between research in GIS-based ecological modelling and current practice in biodiversity assessment within environmental assessment.

  14. Do recreational activities affect coastal biodiversity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riera, Rodrigo; Menci, Cristiano; Sanabria-Fernández, José Antonio; Becerro, Mikel A.

    2016-09-01

    Human activities are largely affecting coastal communities worldwide. Recreational perturbations have been overlooked in comparison to other perturbations, yet they are potential threats to marine biodiversity. They affect coastal communities in different ways, underpinning consistent shifts in fish and invertebrates assemblages. Several sites were sampled subjected to varying effects by recreational fishermen (low and high pressure) and scuba divers (low and high) in an overpopulated Atlantic island. Non-consistent differences in ecological, trophic and functional diversity were found in coastal communities, considering both factors ("diving" and "fishing"). Multivariate analyses only showed significant differences in benthic invertebrates between intensively-dived and non-dived sites. The lack of clear trends may be explained by the depletion of coastal resources in the study area, an extensively-affected island by overfishing.

  15. Coccolithophores: Functional Biodiversity, Enzymes and Bioprospecting

    PubMed Central

    Reid, Emma L.; Worthy, Charlotte A.; Probert, Ian; Ali, Sohail T.; Love, John; Napier, Johnathan; Littlechild, Jenny A.; Somerfield, Paul J.; Allen, Michael J.

    2011-01-01

    Emiliania huxleyi is a single celled, marine phytoplankton with global distribution. As a key species for global biogeochemical cycling, a variety of strains have been amassed in various culture collections. Using a library consisting of 52 strains of E. huxleyi and an ‘in house’ enzyme screening program, we have assessed the functional biodiversity within this species of fundamental importance to global biogeochemical cycling, whilst at the same time determining their potential for exploitation in biocatalytic applications. Here, we describe the screening of E. huxleyi strains, as well as a coccolithovirus infected strain, for commercially relevant biocatalytic enzymes such as acid/alkali phosphodiesterase, acid/alkali phosphomonoesterase, EC1.1.1-type dehydrogenase, EC1.3.1-type dehydrogenase and carboxylesterase. PMID:21731551

  16. PYCNOIB: biodiversity and biogeography of Iberian pycnogonids.

    PubMed

    Soler-Membrives, Anna; Munilla, Tomás

    2015-01-01

    Biodiversity and biogeographic studies comparing the distribution patterns of benthic marine organisms across the Iberian Atlantic and Mediterranean waters are scarce. The Pycnogonida (sea spiders) are a clear example of both endemicity and diversity, and are considered a key taxon to study and monitor biogeographic and biodiversity patterns. This is the first review that compiles data about abundance and diversity of Iberian pycnogonids and examines their biogeographic patterns and bathymetric constraints using GIS tools. A total of 17,762 pycnogonid records from 343 localities were analyzed and were found to contain 65 species, 21 genera and 12 families. Achelia echinata and Ammothella longipes (family Acheliidae) were the most abundant comprising ~80% of the total records. The Acheliidae is also the most speciose in Iberian waters with 15 species. In contrast, the family Nymphonidae has 7 species but is significantly less abundant (<1% of the total records) than Acheliidae. Species accumulation curves indicate that further sampling would increase the number of Iberian species records. Current sampling effort suggests that the pycnogonid fauna of the Mediterranean region may be richer than that of the Atlantic. The Strait of Gibraltar and the Alboran Sea are recognized as species-rich areas that act as buffer zones between the Atlantic and Mediterranean boundaries. The deep waters surrounding the Iberian Peninsula are poorly surveyed, with only 15% of the sampling sites located below 1000 m. Further deep-water sampling is needed mainly on the Iberian Mediterranean side.

  17. PYCNOIB: Biodiversity and Biogeography of Iberian Pycnogonids

    PubMed Central

    Soler-Membrives, Anna; Munilla, Tomás

    2015-01-01

    Biodiversity and biogeographic studies comparing the distribution patterns of benthic marine organisms across the Iberian Atlantic and Mediterranean waters are scarce. The Pycnogonida (sea spiders) are a clear example of both endemicity and diversity, and are considered a key taxon to study and monitor biogeographic and biodiversity patterns. This is the first review that compiles data about abundance and diversity of Iberian pycnogonids and examines their biogeographic patterns and bathymetric constraints using GIS tools. A total of 17762 pycnogonid records from 343 localities were analyzed and were found to contain 65 species, 21 genera and 12 families. Achelia echinata and Ammothella longipes (family Acheliidae) were the most abundant comprising ~80% of the total records. The Acheliidae is also the most speciose in Iberian waters with 15 species. In contrast, the family Nymphonidae has 7 species but is significantly less abundant (<1% of the total records) than Acheliidae. Species accumulation curves indicate that further sampling would increase the number of Iberian species records. Current sampling effort suggests that the pycnogonid fauna of the Mediterranean region may be richer than that of the Atlantic. The Strait of Gibraltar and the Alboran Sea are recognized as species-rich areas that act as buffer zones between the Atlantic and Mediterranean boundaries. The deep waters surrounding the Iberian Peninsula are poorly surveyed, with only 15% of the sampling sites located below 1000 m. Further deep-water sampling is needed mainly on the Iberian Mediterranean side. PMID:25781483

  18. Exploring marine resources for bioactive compounds.

    PubMed

    Kiuru, Paula; DʼAuria, M Valeria; Muller, Christian D; Tammela, Päivi; Vuorela, Heikki; Yli-Kauhaluoma, Jari

    2014-09-01

    Biodiversity in the seas is only partly explored, although marine organisms are excellent sources for many industrial products. Through close co-operation between industrial and academic partners, it is possible to successfully collect, isolate and classify marine organisms, such as bacteria, fungi, micro- and macroalgae, cyanobacteria, and marine invertebrates from the oceans and seas globally. Extracts and purified compounds of these organisms can be studied for several therapeutically and industrially significant biological activities, including anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, and anticoagulant activities by applying a wide variety of screening tools, as well as for ion channel/receptor modulation and plant growth regulation. Chromatographic isolation of bioactive compounds will be followed by structural determination. Sustainable cultivation methods for promising organisms and biotechnological processes for selected compounds can be developed, as well as biosensors for monitoring the target compounds. The (semi)synthetic modification of marine-based bioactive compounds produces their new derivatives, structural analogs and mimetics that could serve as hit or lead compounds and be used to expand compound libraries based on marine natural products. The research innovations can be targeted for industrial product development in order to improve the growth and productivity of marine biotechnology. Marine research aims at a better understanding of environmentally conscious sourcing of marine biotechnology products and increased public awareness of marine biodiversity. Marine research is expected to offer novel marine-based lead compounds for industries and strengthen their product portfolios related to pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, cosmetic, agrochemical, food processing, material and biosensor applications. PMID:25203732

  19. Urban biodiversity: patterns and mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Faeth, Stanley H; Bang, Christofer; Saari, Susanna

    2011-03-01

    The patterns of biodiversity changes in cities are now fairly well established, although diversity changes in temperate cities are much better studied than cities in other climate zones. Generally, plant species richness often increases in cities due to importation of exotic species, whereas animal species richness declines. Abundances of some groups, especially birds and arthropods, often increase in urban areas despite declines in species richness. Although several models have been proposed for biodiversity change, the processes underlying the patterns of biodiversity in cities are poorly understood. We argue that humans directly control plants but relatively few animals and microbes-the remaining biological community is determined by this plant "template" upon which natural ecological and evolutionary processes act. As a result, conserving or reconstructing natural habitats defined by vegetation within urban areas is no guarantee that other components of the biological community will follow suit. Understanding the human-controlled and natural processes that alter biodiversity is essential for conserving urban biodiversity. This urban biodiversity will comprise a growing fraction of the world's repository of biodiversity in the future.

  20. Spatial patterns of biodiversity in the Black Sea: An assessment using benthic polychaetes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Surugiu, Victor; Revkov, Nikolai; Todorova, Valentina; Papageorgiou, Nafsika; Valavanis, Vasilis; Arvanitidis, Christos

    2010-06-01

    The current study broadens the biodiversity information available for the Black Sea and neighbouring regions and improves our knowledge about the polychaete biogeographic patterns to be discerned in them. There appears to be a well-defined zoogeocline from the Marmara Sea and Bosphorus Strait to the inner parts of the region (Azov Sea), depicted both as a multivariate pattern and in terms of species (or taxa) numbers. The emergent multivariate pattern complies, to a certain extent, with Jakubova's (1935) views: three main sectors can be defined in the basin: (a) Prebosphoric, (b) the Black Sea and, (c) the Azov Sea, whereas the Bosphorus Strait and Marmara Sea show less faunal affinities with the afore-mentioned sectors. Patterns derived both from the cosmopolitan and Atlanto-Mediterranean species closely follow the one coming from the polychaete species and genera inventories. As a general trend, species numbers decrease along with the decrease in salinity towards the inner parts of the region. The trend is homologous to that seen in the benthic invertebrate inventories of all the major European semi-enclosed regional seas. Salinity and food availability appear to be the dominant abiotic factors correlated, though weakly, with the various patterns deriving from the taxonomic/zoogeographic categories. With the exception of the Anatolia, polychaete inventories from all sectors appear to be random samples of the total inventory of the region, in terms of taxonomic distinctness values. Therefore, these sectoral inventories can be used for future biodiversity/environmental impact assessment studies. A massive invasion of Mediterranean species after the opening of the Black Sea, in the lower Quaternary period, appears to be the likely biogeographic mechanism through which the old Sarmatic fauna was almost completely replaced by species of marine origin.

  1. Economic Inequality Predicts Biodiversity Loss

    PubMed Central

    Mikkelson, Gregory M.; Gonzalez, Andrew; Peterson, Garry D.

    2007-01-01

    Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation. PMID:17505535

  2. Social challenge of biodiversity conservation

    SciTech Connect

    Castilleja, G.; Poole, P.J.; Geisler, C.C.; Davis, S.H.

    1993-12-31

    ;Contents: Introduction; Opportunities for Collaboration between the Global Environment Facility and Non-Governmental Organizations; Indigenous Peoples and Biodiversity Protection; and Adapting Social Impact Assessment to Protected Area Development.

  3. Economic inequality predicts biodiversity loss.

    PubMed

    Mikkelson, Gregory M; Gonzalez, Andrew; Peterson, Garry D

    2007-05-16

    Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation.

  4. Biodiversity conservation: challenges beyond 2010.

    PubMed

    Rands, Michael R W; Adams, William M; Bennun, Leon; Butchart, Stuart H M; Clements, Andrew; Coomes, David; Entwistle, Abigail; Hodge, Ian; Kapos, Valerie; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Sutherland, William J; Vira, Bhaskar

    2010-09-10

    The continued growth of human populations and of per capita consumption have resulted in unsustainable exploitation of Earth's biological diversity, exacerbated by climate change, ocean acidification, and other anthropogenic environmental impacts. We argue that effective conservation of biodiversity is essential for human survival and the maintenance of ecosystem processes. Despite some conservation successes (especially at local scales) and increasing public and government interest in living sustainably, biodiversity continues to decline. Moving beyond 2010, successful conservation approaches need to be reinforced and adequately financed. In addition, however, more radical changes are required that recognize biodiversity as a global public good, that integrate biodiversity conservation into policies and decision frameworks for resource production and consumption, and that focus on wider institutional and societal changes to enable more effective implementation of policy.

  5. An international biodiversity observation year.

    PubMed

    Wall; Adams; Mooney; Boxshall; Dobson; Nakashizuka

    2001-01-01

    The International Geophysical Year (IGY), which took place between July 1957 and December 1958, helped us to rethink the world. At a time when there was a major paradigm shift in our understanding of the physical world, the international collaboration of the IGY helped to reset the discipline. The International Biodiversity Observation Year (IBOY) is now occurring at a time when our dependence on, and understanding of, biodiversity is being acknowledged as a paradigm shift in our present view of the world. Although the benefits of IGY were initially intellectual with practical effects remaining unknown until many years later, the benefits of greater knowledge of biodiversity will support efforts towards sustainability and affect the quality of life, both now and in the future. By providing the framework for international collaborations between scientists involved in every aspect of life on Earth, IBOY has the potential to redefine our current understanding of biodiversity in a manner similar to how IGY helped redefine the geophysical world.

  6. Fungal biodiversity to biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Chambergo, Felipe S; Valencia, Estela Y

    2016-03-01

    Fungal habitats include soil, water, and extreme environments. With around 100,000 fungus species already described, it is estimated that 5.1 million fungus species exist on our planet, making fungi one of the largest and most diverse kingdoms of eukaryotes. Fungi show remarkable metabolic features due to a sophisticated genomic network and are important for the production of biotechnological compounds that greatly impact our society in many ways. In this review, we present the current state of knowledge on fungal biodiversity, with special emphasis on filamentous fungi and the most recent discoveries in the field of identification and production of biotechnological compounds. More than 250 fungus species have been studied to produce these biotechnological compounds. This review focuses on three of the branches generally accepted in biotechnological applications, which have been identified by a color code: red, green, and white for pharmaceutical, agricultural, and industrial biotechnology, respectively. We also discuss future prospects for the use of filamentous fungi in biotechnology application.

  7. Climate disruption and biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Pimm, Stuart L

    2009-07-28

    'Global warming' may be a familiar term, but it is seriously misleading. Human actions are causing a massive disruption to the planet's climate that is severe, rapid, very variable over space and time, and highly complex. The biosphere itself is complex and its responses to even simple changes are difficult to predict in detail. One can likely only be certain that many changes will be unexpected and some unfortunate. Even the simple, slow warming of the climate will produce complex consequences to species numbers and distributions because of how species depend on each other. An alternative approach to worrying about details is to concentrate on understanding the most significant ecological changes, ones that are irreversible--so-called 'tipping points'. Once such a point has been passed, even if society managed to restore historical climatic conditions, it might not restore the historical ecological patterns. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the loss of species, for we cannot recreate them. Climate disruptions may cause the loss of a large fraction of the planet's biodiversity, even if the only mechanism were to be species ranges moving uphill as temperatures rise.

  8. European seaweeds under pressure: Consequences for communities and ecosystem functioning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mineur, Frédéric; Arenas, Francisco; Assis, Jorge; Davies, Andrew J.; Engelen, Aschwin H.; Fernandes, Francisco; Malta, Erik-jan; Thibaut, Thierry; Van Nguyen, Tu; Vaz-Pinto, Fátima; Vranken, Sofie; Serrão, Ester A.; De Clerck, Olivier

    2015-04-01

    Seaweed assemblages represent the dominant autotrophic biomass in many coastal environments, playing a central structural and functional role in several ecosystems. In Europe, seaweed assemblages are highly diverse systems. The combined seaweed flora of different European regions hold around 1550 species (belonging to nearly 500 genera), with new species continuously uncovered, thanks to the emergence of molecular tools. In this manuscript we review the effects of global and local stressors on European seaweeds, their communities, and ecosystem functioning. Following a brief review on the present knowledge on European seaweed diversity and distribution, and the role of seaweed communities in biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, we discuss the effects of biotic homogenization (invasive species) and global climate change (shifts in bioclimatic zones and ocean acidification) on the distribution of individual species and their effect on the structure and functioning of seaweed communities. The arrival of new introduced species (that already account for 5-10% of the European seaweeds) and the regional extirpation of native species resulting from oceans' climate change are creating new diversity scenarios with undetermined functional consequences. Anthropogenic local stressors create additional disruption often altering dramatically assemblage's structure. Hence, we discuss ecosystem level effects of such stressors like harvesting, trampling, habitat modification, overgrazing and eutrophication that impact coastal communities at local scales. Last, we conclude by highlighting significant knowledge gaps that need to be addressed to anticipate the combined effects of global and local stressors on seaweed communities. With physical and biological changes occurring at unexpected pace, marine phycologists should now integrate and join their research efforts to be able to contribute efficiently for the conservation and management of coastal systems.

  9. The biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea: estimates, patterns, and threats.

    PubMed

    Coll, Marta; Piroddi, Chiara; Steenbeek, Jeroen; Kaschner, Kristin; Ben Rais Lasram, Frida; Aguzzi, Jacopo; Ballesteros, Enric; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Corbera, Jordi; Dailianis, Thanos; Danovaro, Roberto; Estrada, Marta; Froglia, Carlo; Galil, Bella S; Gasol, Josep M; Gertwagen, Ruthy; Gil, João; Guilhaumon, François; Kesner-Reyes, Kathleen; Kitsos, Miltiadis-Spyridon; Koukouras, Athanasios; Lampadariou, Nikolaos; Laxamana, Elijah; López-Fé de la Cuadra, Carlos M; Lotze, Heike K; Martin, Daniel; Mouillot, David; Oro, Daniel; Raicevich, Sasa; Rius-Barile, Josephine; Saiz-Salinas, Jose Ignacio; San Vicente, Carles; Somot, Samuel; Templado, José; Turon, Xavier; Vafidis, Dimitris; Villanueva, Roger; Voultsiadou, Eleni

    2010-08-02

    The Mediterranean Sea is a marine biodiversity hot spot. Here we combined an extensive literature analysis with expert opinions to update publicly available estimates of major taxa in this marine ecosystem and to revise and update several species lists. We also assessed overall spatial and temporal patterns of species diversity and identified major changes and threats. Our results listed approximately 17,000 marine species occurring in the Mediterranean Sea. However, our estimates of marine diversity are still incomplete as yet-undescribed species will be added in the future. Diversity for microbes is substantially underestimated, and the deep-sea areas and portions of the southern and eastern region are still poorly known. In addition, the invasion of alien species is a crucial factor that will continue to change the biodiversity of the Mediterranean, mainly in its eastern basin that can spread rapidly northwards and westwards due to the warming of the Mediterranean Sea. Spatial patterns showed a general decrease in biodiversity from northwestern to southeastern regions following a gradient of production, with some exceptions and caution due to gaps in our knowledge of the biota along the southern and eastern rims. Biodiversity was also generally higher in coastal areas and continental shelves, and decreases with depth. Temporal trends indicated that overexploitation and habitat loss have been the main human drivers of historical changes in biodiversity. At present, habitat loss and degradation, followed by fishing impacts, pollution, climate change, eutrophication, and the establishment of alien species are the most important threats and affect the greatest number of taxonomic groups. All these impacts are expected to grow in importance in the future, especially climate change and habitat degradation. The spatial identification of hot spots highlighted the ecological importance of most of the western Mediterranean shelves (and in particular, the Strait of

  10. The Biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea: Estimates, Patterns, and Threats

    PubMed Central

    Coll, Marta; Piroddi, Chiara; Steenbeek, Jeroen; Kaschner, Kristin; Ben Rais Lasram, Frida; Aguzzi, Jacopo; Ballesteros, Enric; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Corbera, Jordi; Dailianis, Thanos; Danovaro, Roberto; Estrada, Marta; Froglia, Carlo; Galil, Bella S.; Gasol, Josep M.; Gertwagen, Ruthy; Gil, João; Guilhaumon, François; Kesner-Reyes, Kathleen; Kitsos, Miltiadis-Spyridon; Koukouras, Athanasios; Lampadariou, Nikolaos; Laxamana, Elijah; López-Fé de la Cuadra, Carlos M.; Lotze, Heike K.; Martin, Daniel; Mouillot, David; Oro, Daniel; Raicevich, Saša; Rius-Barile, Josephine; Saiz-Salinas, Jose Ignacio; San Vicente, Carles; Somot, Samuel; Templado, José; Turon, Xavier; Vafidis, Dimitris; Villanueva, Roger; Voultsiadou, Eleni

    2010-01-01

    The Mediterranean Sea is a marine biodiversity hot spot. Here we combined an extensive literature analysis with expert opinions to update publicly available estimates of major taxa in this marine ecosystem and to revise and update several species lists. We also assessed overall spatial and temporal patterns of species diversity and identified major changes and threats. Our results listed approximately 17,000 marine species occurring in the Mediterranean Sea. However, our estimates of marine diversity are still incomplete as yet—undescribed species will be added in the future. Diversity for microbes is substantially underestimated, and the deep-sea areas and portions of the southern and eastern region are still poorly known. In addition, the invasion of alien species is a crucial factor that will continue to change the biodiversity of the Mediterranean, mainly in its eastern basin that can spread rapidly northwards and westwards due to the warming of the Mediterranean Sea. Spatial patterns showed a general decrease in biodiversity from northwestern to southeastern regions following a gradient of production, with some exceptions and caution due to gaps in our knowledge of the biota along the southern and eastern rims. Biodiversity was also generally higher in coastal areas and continental shelves, and decreases with depth. Temporal trends indicated that overexploitation and habitat loss have been the main human drivers of historical changes in biodiversity. At present, habitat loss and degradation, followed by fishing impacts, pollution, climate change, eutrophication, and the establishment of alien species are the most important threats and affect the greatest number of taxonomic groups. All these impacts are expected to grow in importance in the future, especially climate change and habitat degradation. The spatial identification of hot spots highlighted the ecological importance of most of the western Mediterranean shelves (and in particular, the Strait of

  11. Biodiversity of bacterial ecosystems in traditional Egyptian Domiati cheese.

    PubMed

    El-Baradei, Gaber; Delacroix-Buchet, Agnès; Ogier, Jean-Claude

    2007-02-01

    Bacterial biodiversity occurring in traditional Egyptian soft Domiati cheese was studied by PCR-temporal temperature gel electrophoresis (TTGE) and PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Bands were identified using a reference species database (J.-C. Ogier et al., Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 70:5628-5643, 2004); de novo bands having nonidentified migration patterns were identified by DNA sequencing. Results reveal a novel bacterial profile and extensive bacterial biodiversity in Domiati cheeses, as reflected by the numerous bands present in TTGE and DGGE patterns. The dominant lactic acid bacteria (LAB) identified were as follows: Leuconostoc mesenteroides, Lactococcus garvieae, Aerococcus viridans, Lactobacillus versmoldensis, Pediococcus inopinatus, and Lactococcus lactis. Frequent non-LAB species included numerous coagulase-negative staphylococci, Vibrio spp., Kocuria rhizophila, Kocuria kristinae, Kocuria halotolerans, Arthrobacter spp./Brachybacterium tyrofermentans. This is the first time that the majority of these species has been identified in Domiati cheese. Nearly all the dominant and frequent bacterial species are salt tolerant, and several correspond to known marine bacteria. As Domiati cheese contains 5.4 to 9.5% NaCl, we suggest that these bacteria are likely to have an important role in the ripening process. This first systematic study of the microbial composition of Domiati cheeses reveals great biodiversity and evokes a role for marine bacteria in determining cheese type.

  12. Biodiversity of Bacterial Ecosystems in Traditional Egyptian Domiati Cheese▿

    PubMed Central

    El-Baradei, Gaber; Delacroix-Buchet, Agnès; Ogier, Jean-Claude

    2007-01-01

    Bacterial biodiversity occurring in traditional Egyptian soft Domiati cheese was studied by PCR-temporal temperature gel electrophoresis (TTGE) and PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Bands were identified using a reference species database (J.-C. Ogier et al., Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 70:5628-5643, 2004); de novo bands having nonidentified migration patterns were identified by DNA sequencing. Results reveal a novel bacterial profile and extensive bacterial biodiversity in Domiati cheeses, as reflected by the numerous bands present in TTGE and DGGE patterns. The dominant lactic acid bacteria (LAB) identified were as follows: Leuconostoc mesenteroides, Lactococcus garvieae, Aerococcus viridans, Lactobacillus versmoldensis, Pediococcus inopinatus, and Lactococcus lactis. Frequent non-LAB species included numerous coagulase-negative staphylococci, Vibrio spp., Kocuria rhizophila, Kocuria kristinae, Kocuria halotolerans, Arthrobacter spp./Brachybacterium tyrofermentans. This is the first time that the majority of these species has been identified in Domiati cheese. Nearly all the dominant and frequent bacterial species are salt tolerant, and several correspond to known marine bacteria. As Domiati cheese contains 5.4 to 9.5% NaCl, we suggest that these bacteria are likely to have an important role in the ripening process. This first systematic study of the microbial composition of Domiati cheeses reveals great biodiversity and evokes a role for marine bacteria in determining cheese type. PMID:17189434

  13. Challenges in assessing the toxic effects of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons to marine organisms: a case study on the acute toxicity of pyrene to the European seabass (Dicentrarchus labrax L.).

    PubMed

    Almeida, Joana R; Gravato, Carlos; Guilhermino, Lúcia

    2012-03-01

    The acute toxicity (96 h) of pyrene (PY) to European seabass (Dicentrachus labrax) juveniles assessed in a semi-static bioassay (SSB) with medium renewal at each 12h, and in a static bioassay (SB) without medium renewal was compared in laboratorial conditions (water PY concentrations: 0.07-10 mg L(-1)). Main findings in the SSB that assessed mainly the toxicity of PY and its metabolites were: increased levels of bile PY metabolites in good agreement with the profile of lipid peroxidation levels (LPO) in exposed fish relating PY exposure and oxidative damage; increased levels of PY-type compounds in the brain indicating their ability to cross the blood-brain barrier; increased levels of these substances in liver and muscle which are edible tissues for humans thus raising concern on potential adverse effects on consumers of fish from PY contaminated areas; a significant inhibition of glutathione S-transferase activity suggesting its involvement in PY detoxication as toxicant scavenger; finally, an almost complete impairment of the swimming velocity at all the PY concentrations linking sub-individual to higher population level effects. In the SB, where the overall toxicity of PY, its metabolites and environmental degradation products was evaluated, 19% and 79% of PY decay in test media was found at 12 and 96 h, respectively. In general, the effects were similar to those of SSB but with significant effects being induced at higher PY concentrations indicating that the parental compound is more toxic than its environmental degradation products. The other main differences relatively to the SSB were: increased levels of PY-type substances in the liver suggesting more accumulation in this organ. Therefore, these findings highlight the need of carefully considering experimental design options when assessing the toxicity of readily degradable substances to marine fish, and stress the importance of taking into consideration the toxicity of environmental degradation products in

  14. The European-wide Geo-Seas data space for marine geological and geophysical data and its novel approach in Metadata, Data models and Semantics emerging from the case of Seismic data.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diviacco, Paolo; Busato, Alessandro; Glaves, Helen M.; Schaap, Dick M. A.

    2013-04-01

    The Geo-Seas EU FP7 project aims at providing means to deliver and access integrated sets of primary marine geological and geophysical data. These are among the most important elements in the process of scientific and applied marine research, economic activities, and sustainable environmental management, at regional, European and global scales. Such data space requires an European-wide services infrastructure, standardised practices by the data repositories, and middleware so that end users can identify, locate and access the data they might be interested in. Being Geo-Seas a sibling of the SeaDataNet project, it adopts technologies developed within the latter, extending them and introducing new paradigms. Within this perspective a specific attention was reserved to Seismic data, due to its value in commercial use and scientific community positioning, on one hand, and to the difficulties in handling its file size on the other. To tackle these issues a novel approach was devised, that uses web based data-owner-side visualization facilities installed at each data provider premise. This overcomes the limitations of the common practices in data dissemination, where eventually the data is downloaded and used "off-line" at the end-user workstation. This solution is based on a seismic data visualization software that is strictly integrated with the GeoSeas (and SeaDataNet) project middleware and that therefore allows to perform consistent user authentications and requests handling across all domains and partners. Considering the large and ever increasing number of datasets made available within the project, and that deep examination of seismic data via the viewer could take time, it was devised to introduce a more efficient way to select useful hits within the Geo-Seas data space extending the already existent ISO19115-based SeaDataNet discovery mechanism (CDI). This has been achieved through the introduction of a "browsing" level linked to the CDI where further

  15. Developing biodiversity indicators on a stakeholders' opinions basis: the gypsum industry Key Performance Indicators framework.

    PubMed

    Pitz, Carline; Mahy, Grégory; Vermeulen, Cédric; Marlet, Christine; Séleck, Maxime

    2016-07-01

    This study aims to establish a common Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) framework for reporting about the gypsum industry biodiversity at the European level. In order to integrate different opinions and to reach a consensus framework, an original participatory process approach has been developed among different stakeholder groups: Eurogypsum, European and regional authorities, university scientists, consulting offices, European and regional associations for the conservation of nature, and the extractive industry. The strategy is developed around four main steps: (1) building of a maximum set of indicators to be submitted to stakeholders based on the literature (Focus Group method); (2) evaluating the consensus about indicators through a policy Delphi survey aiming at the prioritization of indicator classes using the Analytic Hierarchy Process method (AHP) and of individual indicators; (3) testing acceptability and feasibility through analysis of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and visits to three European quarries; (4) Eurogypsum final decision and communication. The resulting framework contains a set of 11 indicators considered the most suitable for all the stakeholders. Our KPIs respond to European legislation and strategies for biodiversity. The framework aims at improving sustainability in quarries and at helping to manage biodiversity as well as to allow the creation of coherent reporting systems. The final goal is to allow for the definition of the actual biodiversity status of gypsum quarries and allow for enhancing it. The framework is adaptable to the local context of each gypsum quarry. PMID:26347416

  16. Developing biodiversity indicators on a stakeholders' opinions basis: the gypsum industry Key Performance Indicators framework.

    PubMed

    Pitz, Carline; Mahy, Grégory; Vermeulen, Cédric; Marlet, Christine; Séleck, Maxime

    2016-07-01

    This study aims to establish a common Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) framework for reporting about the gypsum industry biodiversity at the European level. In order to integrate different opinions and to reach a consensus framework, an original participatory process approach has been developed among different stakeholder groups: Eurogypsum, European and regional authorities, university scientists, consulting offices, European and regional associations for the conservation of nature, and the extractive industry. The strategy is developed around four main steps: (1) building of a maximum set of indicators to be submitted to stakeholders based on the literature (Focus Group method); (2) evaluating the consensus about indicators through a policy Delphi survey aiming at the prioritization of indicator classes using the Analytic Hierarchy Process method (AHP) and of individual indicators; (3) testing acceptability and feasibility through analysis of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and visits to three European quarries; (4) Eurogypsum final decision and communication. The resulting framework contains a set of 11 indicators considered the most suitable for all the stakeholders. Our KPIs respond to European legislation and strategies for biodiversity. The framework aims at improving sustainability in quarries and at helping to manage biodiversity as well as to allow the creation of coherent reporting systems. The final goal is to allow for the definition of the actual biodiversity status of gypsum quarries and allow for enhancing it. The framework is adaptable to the local context of each gypsum quarry.

  17. Phanerozoic Biodiversity Mass Extinctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bambach, Richard K.

    2006-05-01

    Recent analyses of Sepkoski's genus-level compendium show that only three events form a statistically separate class of high extinction intensities when only post-Early Ordovician intervals are considered, but geologists have called numerous events mass extinctions. Is this a conflict? A review of different methods of tabulating data from the Sepkoski database reveals 18 intervals during the Phanerozoic have peaks of both magnitude and rate of extinction that appear in each tabulating scheme. These intervals all fit Sepkoski's definition of mass extinction. However, they vary widely in timing and effect of extinction, demonstrating that mass extinctions are not a homogeneous group of events. No consensus has been reached on the kill mechanism for any marine mass extinction. In fact, adequate data on timing in ecologic, rather than geologic, time and on geographic and environmental distribution of extinction have not yet been systematically compiled for any extinction event.

  18. Marine spatial planning in Cyprus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadjimitsis, Diofantos; Agapiou, Athos; Mettas, Christodoulos; Themistocleous, Kyriacos; Evagorou, Evagoras; Cuca, Branka; Papoutsa, Christiana; Nisantzi, Argyro; Mamouri, Rodanthi-Elisavet; Soulis, George; Xagoraris, Zafiris; Lysandrou, Vasiliki; Aliouris, Kyriacos; Ioannou, Nicolas; Pavlogeorgatos, Gerasimos

    2015-06-01

    Marine Spatial Planning (MSP), which is in concept similar to land-use planning, is a public process by which the relevant Member State's authorities analyse and organise human activities in marine areas to achieve ecological, economic and social objectives. MSP aims to promote sustainable growth of maritime economies, sustainable development of marine areas and sustainable use of marine resources. This paper highlights the importance of MSP and provides basic outcomes of the main European marine development. The already successful MSP plans can provide useful feedback and guidelines for other countries that are in the process of implementation of an integrated MSP, such as Cyprus. This paper presents part of the MSP project, of which 80% funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and 20% from national contribution. An overview of the project is presented, including data acquisition, methodology and preliminary results for the implementation of MSP in Cyprus.

  19. Bioprospecting marine plankton.

    PubMed

    Abida, Heni; Ruchaud, Sandrine; Rios, Laurent; Humeau, Anne; Probert, Ian; De Vargas, Colomban; Bach, Stéphane; Bowler, Chris

    2013-11-01

    The ocean dominates the surface of our planet and plays a major role in regulating the biosphere. For example, the microscopic photosynthetic organisms living within provide 50% of the oxygen we breathe, and much of our food and mineral resources are extracted from the ocean. In a time of ecological crisis and major changes in our society, it is essential to turn our attention towards the sea to find additional solutions for a sustainable future. Remarkably, while we are overexploiting many marine resources, particularly the fisheries, the planktonic compartment composed of zooplankton, phytoplankton, bacteria and viruses, represents 95% of marine biomass and yet the extent of its diversity remains largely unknown and underexploited. Consequently, the potential of plankton as a bioresource for humanity is largely untapped. Due to their diverse evolutionary backgrounds, planktonic organisms offer immense opportunities: new resources for medicine, cosmetics and food, renewable energy, and long-term solutions to mitigate climate change. Research programs aiming to exploit culture collections of marine micro-organisms as well as to prospect the huge resources of marine planktonic biodiversity in the oceans are now underway, and several bioactive extracts and purified compounds have already been identified. This review will survey and assess the current state-of-the-art and will propose methodologies to better exploit the potential of marine plankton for drug discovery and for dermocosmetics. PMID:24240981

  20. Bioprospecting Marine Plankton

    PubMed Central

    Abida, Heni; Ruchaud, Sandrine; Rios, Laurent; Humeau, Anne; Probert, Ian; De Vargas, Colomban; Bach, Stéphane; Bowler, Chris

    2013-01-01

    The ocean dominates the surface of our planet and plays a major role in regulating the biosphere. For example, the microscopic photosynthetic organisms living within provide 50% of the oxygen we breathe, and much of our food and mineral resources are extracted from the ocean. In a time of ecological crisis and major changes in our society, it is essential to turn our attention towards the sea to find additional solutions for a sustainable future. Remarkably, while we are overexploiting many marine resources, particularly the fisheries, the planktonic compartment composed of zooplankton, phytoplankton, bacteria and viruses, represents 95% of marine biomass and yet the extent of its diversity remains largely unknown and underexploited. Consequently, the potential of plankton as a bioresource for humanity is largely untapped. Due to their diverse evolutionary backgrounds, planktonic organisms offer immense opportunities: new resources for medicine, cosmetics and food, renewable energy, and long-term solutions to mitigate climate change. Research programs aiming to exploit culture collections of marine micro-organisms as well as to prospect the huge resources of marine planktonic biodiversity in the oceans are now underway, and several bioactive extracts and purified compounds have already been identified. This review will survey and assess the current state-of-the-art and will propose methodologies to better exploit the potential of marine plankton for drug discovery and for dermocosmetics. PMID:24240981

  1. Biodiversity and Industry Ecosystem Management

    PubMed

    COLEMAN

    1996-11-01

    / The term biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they comprise, and the variety of ecosystems of which they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health, a closely related concept, is described in terms of a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability and sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the face of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish "near-trump" (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-wide, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute

  2. Biodiversity conservation in local planning.

    PubMed

    Miller, James R; Groom, Martha; Hess, George R; Steelman, Toddi; Stokes, David L; Thompson, Jan; Bowman, Troy; Fricke, Laura; King, Brandon; Marquardt, Ryan

    2009-02-01

    Local land-use policy is increasingly being recognized as fundamental to biodiversity conservation in the United States. Many planners and conservation scientists have called for broader use of planning and regulatory tools to support the conservation of biodiversity at local scales. Yet little is known about the pervasiveness of these practices. We conducted an on-line survey of county, municipal, and tribal planning directors (n =116) in 3 geographic regions of the United States: metropolitan Seattle, Washington; metropolitan Des Moines, Iowa; and the Research Triangle, North Carolina. Our objectives were to gauge the extent to which local planning departments address biodiversity conservation and to identify factors that facilitate or hinder conservation actions in local planning. We found that biodiversity conservation was seldom a major consideration in these departments. Staff time was mainly devoted to development mandates and little time was spent on biodiversity conservation. Regulations requiring conservation actions that might benefit biodiversity were uncommon, with the exception of rules governing water quality in all 3 regions and the protection of threatened and endangered species in the Seattle region. Planning tools that could enhance habitat conservation were used infrequently. Collaboration across jurisdictions was widespread, but rarely focused on conservation. Departments with a conservation specialist on staff tended to be associated with higher levels of conservation actions. Jurisdictions in the Seattle region also reported higher levels of conservation action, largely driven by state and federal mandates. Increased funding was most frequently cited as a factor that would facilitate greater consideration of biodiversity in local planning. There are numerous opportunities for conservation biologists to play a role in improving conservation planning at local scales.

  3. Biodiversity and Industry Ecosystem Management

    PubMed

    COLEMAN

    1996-11-01

    / The term biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they comprise, and the variety of ecosystems of which they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health, a closely related concept, is described in terms of a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability and sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the face of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish "near-trump" (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-wide, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute

  4. Relating costs to the user value of farmland biodiversity measurements.

    PubMed

    Targetti, S; Herzog, F; Geijzendorffer, I R; Pointereau, P; Viaggi, D

    2016-01-01

    The impact of agricultural management on global biodiversity highlights the need for farm-scale monitoring programmes capable of determining the performance of agriculture practices. Yet the identification of appropriate indicators is a challenging process and one that involves considering a number of different aspects and requirements. Besides the attention given to scientific effectiveness, relevant but less studied issues related to biodiversity measurements include the economic feasibility of monitoring programmes and the relevance of indicators for different end-users. In this paper, we combine an analytic assessment of costs and a stakeholder-based evaluation of the usefulness of a set of biodiversity-related parameters (habitat mapping, vegetation, bees, earthworms, spiders, and a farmer questionnaire) tested for scientific consistency in 12 European case studies and on more than 14,000 ha of farmland. The results point to the possibility of meeting the expectations of different end-users (administrators, farmers and consumers) with a common indicator set. Combining costs and usefulness also suggests the possibility of designing more efficient monitoring approaches involving private agencies and networks of volunteers and farmers for the field data collection at different stages of a monitoring programme. Although complex, such an approach would make it possible to enhance the effectiveness of available funds for farmland biodiversity monitoring.

  5. Relating costs to the user value of farmland biodiversity measurements.

    PubMed

    Targetti, S; Herzog, F; Geijzendorffer, I R; Pointereau, P; Viaggi, D

    2016-01-01

    The impact of agricultural management on global biodiversity highlights the need for farm-scale monitoring programmes capable of determining the performance of agriculture practices. Yet the identification of appropriate indicators is a challenging process and one that involves considering a number of different aspects and requirements. Besides the attention given to scientific effectiveness, relevant but less studied issues related to biodiversity measurements include the economic feasibility of monitoring programmes and the relevance of indicators for different end-users. In this paper, we combine an analytic assessment of costs and a stakeholder-based evaluation of the usefulness of a set of biodiversity-related parameters (habitat mapping, vegetation, bees, earthworms, spiders, and a farmer questionnaire) tested for scientific consistency in 12 European case studies and on more than 14,000 ha of farmland. The results point to the possibility of meeting the expectations of different end-users (administrators, farmers and consumers) with a common indicator set. Combining costs and usefulness also suggests the possibility of designing more efficient monitoring approaches involving private agencies and networks of volunteers and farmers for the field data collection at different stages of a monitoring programme. Although complex, such an approach would make it possible to enhance the effectiveness of available funds for farmland biodiversity monitoring. PMID:26457535

  6. The proteasomes of two marine decapod crustaceans, European lobster (Homarus gammarus) and Edible crab (Cancer pagurus), are differently impaired by heavy metals.

    PubMed

    Götze, Sandra; Bose, Aneesh; Sokolova, Inna M; Abele, Doris; Saborowski, Reinhard

    2014-05-01

    The intracellular ubiquitin-proteasome system is a key regulator of cellular processes involved in the controlled degradation of short-living or malfunctioning proteins. Certain diseases and cellular dysfunctions are known to arise from the disruption of proteasome pathways. Trace metals are recognized stressors of the proteasome system in vertebrates and plants, but their effects on the proteasome of invertebrates are not well understood. Since marine invertebrates, and particularly benthic crustaceans, can be exposed to high metal levels, we studied the effects of in vitro exposure to Hg(2+), Zn(2+), Cu(2+), and Cd(2+) on the activities of the proteasome from the claw muscles of lobsters (Homarus gammarus) and crabs (Cancer pagurus). The chymotrypsin like activity of the proteasome of these two species showed different sensitivity to metals. In lobsters the activity was significantly inhibited by all metals to a similar extent. In crabs the activities were severely suppressed only by Hg(2+) and Cu(2+) while Zn(2+) had only a moderate effect and Cd(2+) caused almost no inhibition of the crab proteasome. This indicates that the proteasomes of both species possess structural characteristics that determine different susceptibility to metals. Consequently, the proteasome-mediated protein degradation in crab C. pagurus may be less affected by metal pollution than that of the lobster H. gammarus. PMID:24721378

  7. The proteasomes of two marine decapod crustaceans, European lobster (Homarus gammarus) and Edible crab (Cancer pagurus), are differently impaired by heavy metals.

    PubMed

    Götze, Sandra; Bose, Aneesh; Sokolova, Inna M; Abele, Doris; Saborowski, Reinhard

    2014-05-01

    The intracellular ubiquitin-proteasome system is a key regulator of cellular processes involved in the controlled degradation of short-living or malfunctioning proteins. Certain diseases and cellular dysfunctions are known to arise from the disruption of proteasome pathways. Trace metals are recognized stressors of the proteasome system in vertebrates and plants, but their effects on the proteasome of invertebrates are not well understood. Since marine invertebrates, and particularly benthic crustaceans, can be exposed to high metal levels, we studied the effects of in vitro exposure to Hg(2+), Zn(2+), Cu(2+), and Cd(2+) on the activities of the proteasome from the claw muscles of lobsters (Homarus gammarus) and crabs (Cancer pagurus). The chymotrypsin like activity of the proteasome of these two species showed different sensitivity to metals. In lobsters the activity was significantly inhibited by all metals to a similar extent. In crabs the activities were severely suppressed only by Hg(2+) and Cu(2+) while Zn(2+) had only a moderate effect and Cd(2+) caused almost no inhibition of the crab proteasome. This indicates that the proteasomes of both species possess structural characteristics that determine different susceptibility to metals. Consequently, the proteasome-mediated protein degradation in crab C. pagurus may be less affected by metal pollution than that of the lobster H. gammarus.

  8. Motivations for conserving urban biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Dearborn, Donald C; Kark, Salit

    2010-04-01

    In a time of increasing urbanization, the fundamental value of conserving urban biodiversity remains controversial. How much of a fixed budget should be spent on conservation in urban versus nonurban landscapes? The answer should depend on the goals that drive our conservation actions, yet proponents of urban conservation often fail to specify the motivation for protecting urban biodiversity. This is an important shortcoming on several fronts, including a missed opportunity to make a stronger appeal to those who believe conservation biology should focus exclusively on more natural, wilder landscapes. We argue that urban areas do offer an important venue for conservation biology, but that we must become better at choosing and articulating our goals. We explored seven possible motivations for urban biodiversity conservation: preserving local biodiversity, creating stepping stones to nonurban habitat, understanding and facilitating responses to environmental change, conducting environmental education, providing ecosystem services, fulfilling ethical responsibilities, and improving human well-being. To attain all these goals, challenges must be faced that are common to the urban environment, such as localized pollution, disruption of ecosystem structure, and limited availability of land. There are, however, also challenges specific only to particular goals, meaning that different goals will require different approaches and actions. This highlights the importance of specifying the motivations behind urban biodiversity conservation. If the goals are unknown, progress cannot be assessed.

  9. Motivations for conserving urban biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Dearborn, Donald C; Kark, Salit

    2010-04-01

    In a time of increasing urbanization, the fundamental value of conserving urban biodiversity remains controversial. How much of a fixed budget should be spent on conservation in urban versus nonurban landscapes? The answer should depend on the goals that drive our conservation actions, yet proponents of urban conservation often fail to specify the motivation for protecting urban biodiversity. This is an important shortcoming on several fronts, including a missed opportunity to make a stronger appeal to those who believe conservation biology should focus exclusively on more natural, wilder landscapes. We argue that urban areas do offer an important venue for conservation biology, but that we must become better at choosing and articulating our goals. We explored seven possible motivations for urban biodiversity conservation: preserving local biodiversity, creating stepping stones to nonurban habitat, understanding and facilitating responses to environmental change, conducting environmental education, providing ecosystem services, fulfilling ethical responsibilities, and improving human well-being. To attain all these goals, challenges must be faced that are common to the urban environment, such as localized pollution, disruption of ecosystem structure, and limited availability of land. There are, however, also challenges specific only to particular goals, meaning that different goals will require different approaches and actions. This highlights the importance of specifying the motivations behind urban biodiversity conservation. If the goals are unknown, progress cannot be assessed. PMID:19775276

  10. Vampires in the oceans: predatory cercozoan amoebae in marine habitats.

    PubMed

    Berney, Cédric; Romac, Sarah; Mahé, Frédéric; Santini, Sébastien; Siano, Raffaele; Bass, David

    2013-12-01

    Vampire amoebae (vampyrellids) are predators of algae, fungi, protozoa and small metazoans known primarily from soils and in freshwater habitats. They are among the very few heterotrophic naked, filose and reticulose protists that have received some attention from a morphological and ecological point of view over the last few decades, because of the peculiar mode of feeding of known species. Yet, the true extent of their biodiversity remains largely unknown. Here we use a complementary approach of culturing and sequence database mining to address this issue, focusing our efforts on marine environments, where vampyrellids are very poorly known. We present 10 new vampyrellid isolates, 8 from marine or brackish sediments, and 2 from soil or freshwater sediment. Two of the former correspond to the genera Thalassomyxa Grell and Penardia Cash for which sequence data were previously unavailable. Small-subunit ribosomal DNA analysis confirms they are all related to previously sequenced vampyrellids. An exhaustive screening of the NCBI GenBank database and of 454 sequence data generated by the European BioMarKs consortium revealed hundreds of distinct environmental vampyrellid sequences. We show that vampyrellids are much more diverse than previously thought, especially in marine habitats. Our new isolates, which cover almost the full phylogenetic range of vampyrellid sequences revealed in this study, offer a rare opportunity to integrate data from environmental DNA surveys with phenotypic information. However, the very large genetic diversity we highlight within vampyrellids (especially in marine sediments and soils) contrasts with the paradoxically low morphological distinctiveness we observed across our isolates.

  11. Vampires in the oceans: predatory cercozoan amoebae in marine habitats

    PubMed Central

    Berney, Cédric; Romac, Sarah; Mahé, Frédéric; Santini, Sébastien; Siano, Raffaele; Bass, David

    2013-01-01

    Vampire amoebae (vampyrellids) are predators of algae, fungi, protozoa and small metazoans known primarily from soils and in freshwater habitats. They are among the very few heterotrophic naked, filose and reticulose protists that have received some attention from a morphological and ecological point of view over the last few decades, because of the peculiar mode of feeding of known species. Yet, the true extent of their biodiversity remains largely unknown. Here we use a complementary approach of culturing and sequence database mining to address this issue, focusing our efforts on marine environments, where vampyrellids are very poorly known. We present 10 new vampyrellid isolates, 8 from marine or brackish sediments, and 2 from soil or freshwater sediment. Two of the former correspond to the genera Thalassomyxa Grell and Penardia Cash for which sequence data were previously unavailable. Small-subunit ribosomal DNA analysis confirms they are all related to previously sequenced vampyrellids. An exhaustive screening of the NCBI GenBank database and of 454 sequence data generated by the European BioMarKs consortium revealed hundreds of distinct environmental vampyrellid sequences. We show that vampyrellids are much more diverse than previously thought, especially in marine habitats. Our new isolates, which cover almost the full phylogenetic range of vampyrellid sequences revealed in this study, offer a rare opportunity to integrate data from environmental DNA surveys with phenotypic information. However, the very large genetic diversity we highlight within vampyrellids (especially in marine sediments and soils) contrasts with the paradoxically low morphological distinctiveness we observed across our isolates. PMID:23864128

  12. n-TiO2 and CdCl2 co-exposure to titanium dioxide nanoparticles and cadmium: Genomic, DNA and chromosomal damage evaluation in the marine fish European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax).

    PubMed

    Nigro, M; Bernardeschi, M; Costagliola, D; Della Torre, C; Frenzilli, G; Guidi, P; Lucchesi, P; Mottola, F; Santonastaso, M; Scarcelli, V; Monaci, F; Corsi, I; Stingo, V; Rocco, L

    2015-11-01

    Due to the large production and growing use of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (n-TiO2), their release in the marine environment and their potential interaction with existing toxic contaminants represent a growing concern for biota. Different end-points of genotoxicity were investigated in the European sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax exposed to n-TiO2 (1mgL(-1)) either alone and combined with CdCl2 (0.1mgL(-1)) for 7 days. DNA primary damage (comet assay), apoptotic cells (diffusion assay), occurrence of micronuclei and nuclear abnormalities (cytome assay) were assessed in peripheral erythrocytes and genomic stability (random amplified polymorphism DNA-PCR, RAPD assay) in muscle tissue. Results showed that genome template stability was reduced after CdCl2 and n-TiO2 exposure. Exposure to n-TiO2 alone was responsible for chromosomal alteration but ineffective in terms of DNA damage; while the opposite was observed in CdCl2 exposed specimens. Co-exposure apparently prevents the chromosomal damage and leads to a partial recovery of the genome template stability.

  13. n-TiO2 and CdCl2 co-exposure to titanium dioxide nanoparticles and cadmium: Genomic, DNA and chromosomal damage evaluation in the marine fish European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax).

    PubMed

    Nigro, M; Bernardeschi, M; Costagliola, D; Della Torre, C; Frenzilli, G; Guidi, P; Lucchesi, P; Mottola, F; Santonastaso, M; Scarcelli, V; Monaci, F; Corsi, I; Stingo, V; Rocco, L

    2015-11-01

    Due to the large production and growing use of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (n-TiO2), their release in the marine environment and their potential interaction with existing toxic contaminants represent a growing concern for biota. Different end-points of genotoxicity were investigated in the European sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax exposed to n-TiO2 (1mgL(-1)) either alone and combined with CdCl2 (0.1mgL(-1)) for 7 days. DNA primary damage (comet assay), apoptotic cells (diffusion assay), occurrence of micronuclei and nuclear abnormalities (cytome assay) were assessed in peripheral erythrocytes and genomic stability (random amplified polymorphism DNA-PCR, RAPD assay) in muscle tissue. Results showed that genome template stability was reduced after CdCl2 and n-TiO2 exposure. Exposure to n-TiO2 alone was responsible for chromosomal alteration but ineffective in terms of DNA damage; while the opposite was observed in CdCl2 exposed specimens. Co-exposure apparently prevents the chromosomal damage and leads to a partial recovery of the genome template stability. PMID:26448269

  14. Characterising and predicting benthic biodiversity for conservation planning in deepwater environments.

    PubMed

    Dunstan, Piers K; Althaus, Franziska; Williams, Alan; Bax, Nicholas J

    2012-01-01

    Understanding patterns of biodiversity in deep sea systems is increasingly important because human activities are extending further into these areas. However, obtaining data is difficult, limiting the ability of science to inform management decisions. We have used three different methods of quantifying biodiversity to describe patterns of biodiversity in an area that includes two marine reserves in deep water off southern Australia. We used biological data collected during a recent survey, combined with extensive physical data to model, predict and map three different attributes of biodiversity: distributions of common species, beta diversity and rank abundance distributions (RAD). The distribution of each of eight common species was unique, although all the species respond to a depth-correlated physical gradient. Changes in composition (beta diversity) were large, even between sites with very similar environmental conditions. Composition at any one site was highly uncertain, and the suite of species changed dramatically both across and down slope. In contrast, the distributions of the RAD components of biodiversity (community abundance, richness, and evenness) were relatively smooth across the study area, suggesting that assemblage structure (i.e. the distribution of abundances of species) is limited, irrespective of species composition. Seamounts had similar biodiversity based on metrics of species presence, beta diversity, total abundance, richness and evenness to the adjacent continental slope in the same depth ranges. These analyses suggest that conservation objectives need to clearly identify which aspects of biodiversity are valued, and employ an appropriate suite of methods to address these aspects, to ensure that conservation goals are met.

  15. Biodiversity and industry ecosystem management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coleman, William G.

    1996-11-01

    The term biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they comprise, and the variety of ecosystems of which they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health, a closely related concept, is described in terms of a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability and sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the face of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish “near-trump” (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-wide, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute

  16. Biodiversity and industry ecosystem management

    SciTech Connect

    Coleman, W.G.

    1996-11-01

    Biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health is a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability an sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the fact of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish {open_quotes}near-trump{close_quotes} (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-side, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute incrementally to the broader agenda of rebuilding or maintaining biodiversity. 40 refs., 8 figs.

  17. LifeWatch - a Large-scale eScience Infrastructure to Assist in Understanding and Managing our Planet's Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernández Ernst, Vera; Poigné, Axel; Los, Walter

    2010-05-01

    MARBEF network for marine data, and the Consortium for European Taxonomic Facilities (CETAF) and its European Distributed Institute for Taxonomy (EDIT) for taxonomic data. But also "smaller" networks and "volunteer scientists" may send data (e.g. GPS supported species observations) to a LifeWatch repository. Autonomous operating wireless environmental sensors and other smart hand-held devices will contribute to increase data capture activities. In this way LifeWatch will directly underpin the development of GEOBON, the biodiversity component if GEOSS, the Global Earth observation System. To overcome all major technical difficulties imposed by the variety of currently and future technologies, protocols, data formats, etc., LifeWatch will define and use common open interfaces. For this purpose, the LifeWatch Reference Model was developed during the preparatory phase specifying the service-oriented architecture underlying the ICT-infrastructure. The Reference Model identifies key requirements and key architectural concepts to support workflows for scientific in-silico experiments, tracking of provenance, and semantic enhancement, besides meeting the functional requirements mentioned before. It provides guidelines for the specification and implementation of services and information models, defining as well a number of generic services and models. Another key issue addressed by the Reference Model is that the cooperation of many developer teams residing in many European countries has to be organized to obtain compatible results in that conformance with the specifications and policies of the Reference Model will be required. The LifeWatch Reference Model is based on the ORCHESTRA Reference Model for geospatial-oriented architectures and services networks that provides a generic framework and has been endorsed as best practice by the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC). The LifeWatch Infrastructure will allow (interdisciplinary) scientific researchers to collaborate by creating e

  18. Children prioritize virtual exotic biodiversity over local biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Ballouard, Jean-Marie; Brischoux, François; Bonnet, Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Environmental education is essential to stem current dramatic biodiversity loss, and childhood is considered as the key period for developing awareness and positive attitudes toward nature. Children are strongly influenced by the media, notably the internet, about biodiversity and conservation issues. However, most media focus on a few iconic, appealing, and usually exotic species. In addition, virtual activities are replacing field experiences. This situation may curb children knowledge and concerns about local biodiversity. Focusing our analyses on local versus exotic species, we examined the level of knowledge and the level of diversity of the animals that French schoolchildren are willing to protect, and whether these perceptions are mainly guided by information available in the internet. For that, we collected and compared two complementary data sets: 1) a questionnaire was administered to schoolchildren to assess their knowledge and consideration to protect animals, 2) an internet content analysis (i.e. Google searching sessions using keywords) was performed to assess which animals are the most often represented. Our results suggest that the knowledge of children and their consideration to protect animal are mainly limited to internet contents, represented by a few exotic and charismatic species. The identification rate of local animals by schoolchildren was meager, suggesting a worrying disconnection from their local environment. Schoolchildren were more prone to protect "virtual" (unseen, exotic) rather than local animal species. Our results reinforce the message that environmental education must also focus on outdoor activities to develop conservation consciousness and concerns about local biodiversity.

  19. Children Prioritize Virtual Exotic Biodiversity over Local Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Ballouard, Jean-Marie; Brischoux, François; Bonnet, Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Environmental education is essential to stem current dramatic biodiversity loss, and childhood is considered as the key period for developing awareness and positive attitudes toward nature. Children are strongly influenced by the media, notably the internet, about biodiversity and conservation issues. However, most media focus on a few iconic, appealing, and usually exotic species. In addition, virtual activities are replacing field experiences. This situation may curb children knowledge and concerns about local biodiversity. Focusing our analyses on local versus exotic species, we examined the level of knowledge and the level of diversity of the animals that French schoolchildren are willing to protect, and whether these perceptions are mainly guided by information available in the internet. For that, we collected and compared two complementary data sets: 1) a questionnaire was administered to schoolchildren to assess their knowledge and consideration to protect animals, 2) an internet content analysis (i.e. Google searching sessions using keywords) was performed to assess which animals are the most often represented. Our results suggest that the knowledge of children and their consideration to protect animal are mainly limited to internet contents, represented by a few exotic and charismatic species. The identification rate of local animals by schoolchildren was meager, suggesting a worrying disconnection from their local environment. Schoolchildren were more prone to protect “virtual” (unseen, exotic) rather than local animal species. Our results reinforce the message that environmental education must also focus on outdoor activities to develop conservation consciousness and concerns about local biodiversity. PMID:21829710

  20. Biodiverse planting for carbon and biodiversity on indigenous land.

    PubMed

    Renwick, Anna R; Robinson, Catherine J; Martin, Tara G; May, Tracey; Polglase, Phil; Possingham, Hugh P; Carwardine, Josie

    2014-01-01

    Carbon offset mechanisms have been established to mitigate climate change through changes in land management. Regulatory frameworks enable landowners and managers to generate saleable carbon credits on domestic and international markets. Identifying and managing the associated co-benefits and dis-benefits involved in the adoption of carbon offset projects is important for the projects to contribute to the broader goal of sustainable development and the provision of benefits to the local communities. So far it has been unclear how Indigenous communities can benefit from such initiatives. We provide a spatial analysis of the carbon and biodiversity potential of one offset method, planting biodiverse native vegetation, on Indigenous land across Australia. We discover significant potential for opportunities for Indigenous communities to achieve carbon sequestration and biodiversity goals through biodiverse plantings, largely in southern and eastern Australia, but the economic feasibility of these projects depend on carbon market assumptions. Our national scale cost-effectiveness analysis is critical to enable Indigenous communities to maximise the benefits available to them through participation in carbon offset schemes.

  1. Global biodiversity monitoring: from data sources to essential biodiversity variables

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Proenca, Vania; Martin, Laura J.; Pereira, Henrique M.; Fernandez, Miguel; McRae, Louise; Belnap, Jayne; Böhm, Monika; Brummitt, Neil; Garcia-Moreno, Jaime; Gregory, Richard D.; Honrado, Joao P; Jürgens, Norbert; Opige, Michael; Schmeller, Dirk S.; Tiago, Patricia; van Sway, Chris A

    2016-01-01

    Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) consolidate information from varied biodiversity observation sources. Here we demonstrate the links between data sources, EBVs and indicators and discuss how different sources of biodiversity observations can be harnessed to inform EBVs. We classify sources of primary observations into four types: extensive and intensive monitoring schemes, ecological field studies and satellite remote sensing. We characterize their geographic, taxonomic and temporal coverage. Ecological field studies and intensive monitoring schemes inform a wide range of EBVs, but the former tend to deliver short-term data, while the geographic coverage of the latter is limited. In contrast, extensive monitoring schemes mostly inform the population abundance EBV, but deliver long-term data across an extensive network of sites. Satellite remote sensing is particularly suited to providing information on ecosystem function and structure EBVs. Biases behind data sources may affect the representativeness of global biodiversity datasets. To improve them, researchers must assess data sources and then develop strategies to compensate for identified gaps. We draw on the population abundance dataset informing the Living Planet Index (LPI) to illustrate the effects of data sources on EBV representativeness. We find that long-term monitoring schemes informing the LPI are still scarce outside of Europe and North America and that ecological field studies play a key role in covering that gap. Achieving representative EBV datasets will depend both on the ability to integrate available data, through data harmonization and modeling efforts, and on the establishment of new monitoring programs to address critical data gaps.

  2. The Biodiversity Collection: A Review of Biodiversity Resources for Educators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pitman, Barb; Braus, Judy; Asato, Lani

    This collection is designed to help educators find outstanding curricula, multimedia resources, and other educational materials that can enhance biodiversity teaching in a variety of settings. The curriculum materials were reviewed by teams comprised of classroom teachers, content experts, and environmental educators. The materials listed in this…

  3. Biodiverse Planting for Carbon and Biodiversity on Indigenous Land

    PubMed Central

    Renwick, Anna R.; Robinson, Catherine J.; Martin, Tara G.; May, Tracey; Polglase, Phil; Possingham, Hugh P.; Carwardine, Josie

    2014-01-01

    Carbon offset mechanisms have been established to mitigate climate change through changes in land management. Regulatory frameworks enable landowners and managers to generate saleable carbon credits on domestic and international markets. Identifying and managing the associated co-benefits and dis-benefits involved in the adoption of carbon offset projects is important for the projects to contribute to the broader goal of sustainable development and the provision of benefits to the local communities. So far it has been unclear how Indigenous communities can benefit from such initiatives. We provide a spatial analysis of the carbon and biodiversity potential of one offset method, planting biodiverse native vegetation, on Indigenous land across Australia. We discover significant potential for opportunities for Indigenous communities to achieve carbon sequestration and biodiversity goals through biodiverse plantings, largely in southern and eastern Australia, but the economic feasibility of these projects depend on carbon market assumptions. Our national scale cost-effectiveness analysis is critical to enable Indigenous communities to maximise the benefits available to them through participation in carbon offset schemes. PMID:24637736

  4. Biodiversity of Vibrios

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Fabiano L.; Iida, Tetsuya; Swings, Jean

    2004-01-01

    Vibrios are ubiquitous and abundant in the aquatic environment. A high abundance of vibrios is also detected in tissues and/or organs of various marine algae and animals, e.g., abalones, bivalves, corals, fish, shrimp, sponges, squid, and zooplankton. Vibrios harbour a wealth of diverse genomes as revealed by different genomic techniques including amplified fragment length polymorphism, multilocus sequence typing, repetetive extragenic palindrome PCR, ribotyping, and whole-genome sequencing. The 74 species of this group are distributed among four different families, i.e., Enterovibrionaceae, Photobacteriaceae, Salinivibrionaceae, and Vibrionaceae. Two new genera, i.e., Enterovibrio norvegicus and Grimontia hollisae, and 20 novel species, i.e., Enterovibrio coralii, Photobacterium eurosenbergii, V. brasiliensis, V. chagasii, V. coralliillyticus, V. crassostreae, V. fortis, V. gallicus, V. hepatarius, V. hispanicus, V. kanaloaei, V. neonatus, V. neptunius, V. pomeroyi, V. pacinii, V. rotiferianus, V. superstes, V. tasmaniensis, V. ezurae, and V. xuii, have been described in the last few years. Comparative genome analyses have already revealed a variety of genomic events, including mutations, chromosomal rearrangements, loss of genes by decay or deletion, and gene acquisitions through duplication or horizontal transfer (e.g., in the acquisition of bacteriophages, pathogenicity islands, and super-integrons), that are probably important driving forces in the evolution and speciation of vibrios. Whole-genome sequencing and comparative genomics through the application of, e.g., microarrays will facilitate the investigation of the gene repertoire at the species level. Based on such new genomic information, the taxonomy and the species concept for vibrios will be reviewed in the next years. PMID:15353563

  5. Current knowledge, gaps and challenges in the Southern European Seas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papathanassiou, Evangelos

    2015-04-01

    New knowledge advances our current understanding on the selection and application of the appropriate tools for assessing the state of the marine environment in the Southern European Seas (SES). Diminishing the lack of knowledge is a prerequisite for sound policy decisions. Although gaps and knowledge are fewer today, the health of marine and coastal ecosystems in the SES is under pressure and shows, in places, some signs of deterioration and declining quality. Overall, there is a lack of data accessibility and long time series in the SES, while in many cases poorly constrained processes cannot really support knowledge-based policy making (e.g. ecosystem functioning, climate change, fisheries management, etc.). New knowledge has to be produced and excellence must be promoted to support sustainable economic growth. At the same time, existing and new capacities have to be upgraded and increased in order to support sustainable convergence between SES countries. There are several gaps that have been identified and processes that have been poorly understood in the SES, mainly from research projects that have been working at basin level. The main research priorities that have been identified from the SeasERA Project for both, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea include: the climate change and its impacts, the hydrological cycle, the ventilation and the inter-basin coupling, the marine biodiversity and the provision of goods and services, the marine protected areas, the deep sea ecosystems, the biological invasions, the marine pollution and the ocean and human health, the renewable energy, the maritime transport, the fisheries and aquaculture activities and the biotechnology and the exploitation of marine resources for industrial application. More important, however, is the fact that the economic, the social and the scientific and the environmental challenges must be collectively tackled. They should have prioritisation and clear objectives as well as data sharing for

  6. Biodiversity and climate change in relation to the Natura 2000 network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harley, M.; de Soye, Y.; Dickson, B.; Tucker, G.; Keder, G.

    2009-04-01

    This project will provide the European Commission (EC) with an overview of the likely impacts of climate change on biodiversity in the European Union (EU), particularly within the Natura 2000 (N2K) network of protected areas, and indications of how the design and implementation of current policy might need to be adapted to ensure that the EU delivers its commitment to halt biodiversity loss by 2010 and beyond. The study will identify those species and associated habitats that are likely to be most vulnerable to climate change and the steps required to protect the integrity of the network from negative effects. The study will also assess the impacts of large-scale renewable energy schemes (wind parks, hydroelectric schemes and tidal barrages) on biodiversity and produce guidelines on the sorts of measures that might be used to maintain and protect N2K sites.

  7. Trading biodiversity for pest problems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent shifts in agricultural practices have resulted in increased pesticide use, land use intensification, and landscape simplification, all of which threaten biodiversity in and near farms. Pests are major challenges to food security, and responses to pests can represent unintended socioeconomic a...

  8. Teaching Biodiversity: A Successful Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbert, Lynne; Brown, Lucy

    2010-01-01

    This article takes you on a journey through the authors' school course unit, the "Variety of Life," which aims to unpick the idea of biodiversity and its many facets. The aims and principles of each teaching topic are defined, teaching activities suggested, resources described and the skills each topic develops listed. Whilst aimed at 11- to…

  9. Biodiversity Lab: Using Local Resources.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gillie, Lynn L.

    1997-01-01

    Examining living organisms in one's own backyard is a key first step toward appreciating the scope and importance of biological diversity throughout the world. The goals of this lab are to involve students in exploring the biodiversity around them, appreciating its scope, and asking questions of new organisms that they may never have noticed…

  10. Teaching about Biodiversity. ERIC Digest.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haury, David L.

    There are three aspects to biodiversity: (1) genetic diversity within species that enables organisms to evolve and adapt to new conditions; (2) species diversity that refers to the number and kind of organisms distributed within an ecosystem; and (3) ecosystem diversity that refers to the variety of habitats and communities interacting in complex…

  11. Biodiversity Conservation in the REDD

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics is a major source of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The tropics also harbour more than half the world's threatened species, raising the possibility that reducing GHG emissions by curtailing tropical deforestation could provide substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Here we explore the potential for such co-benefits in Indonesia, a leading source of GHG emissions from land cover and land use change, and among the most species-rich countries in the world. We show that focal ecosystems for interventions to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in Indonesia do not coincide with areas supporting the most species-rich communities or highest concentration of threatened species. We argue that inherent trade-offs among ecosystems in emission reduction potential, opportunity cost of foregone development and biodiversity values will require a regulatory framework to balance emission reduction interventions with biodiversity co-benefit targets. We discuss how such a regulatory framework might function, and caution that pursuing emission reduction strategies without such a framework may undermine, not enhance, long-term prospects for biodiversity conservation in the tropics. PMID:21092321

  12. The impact of debris on marine life.

    PubMed

    Gall, S C; Thompson, R C

    2015-03-15

    Marine debris is listed among the major perceived threats to biodiversity, and is cause for particular concern due to its abundance, durability and persistence in the marine environment. An extensive literature search reviewed the current state of knowledge on the effects of marine debris on marine organisms. 340 original publications reported encounters between organisms and marine debris and 693 species. Plastic debris accounted for 92% of encounters between debris and individuals. Numerous direct and indirect consequences were recorded, with the potential for sublethal effects of ingestion an area of considerable uncertainty and concern. Comparison to the IUCN Red List highlighted that at least 17% of species affected by entanglement and ingestion were listed as threatened or near threatened. Hence where marine debris combines with other anthropogenic stressors it may affect populations, trophic interactions and assemblages. PMID:25680883

  13. Making Biodiversity Meaningful through Environmental Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Weelie, Daan; Wals, Arjen E. J.

    2002-01-01

    Explores the crossroads between science education and environmental education and presents a framework for tapping environmental education's potential of biodiversity. Outlines a number of stepping stones for making biodiversity meaningful to learners. From the perspective of environmental education, the ill-defined nature of biodiversity is a…

  14. Biology Student Teachers' Conceptual Frameworks regarding Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dikmenli, Musa

    2010-01-01

    In recent years, biodiversity has received a great deal of attention worldwide, especially in environmental education. The reasons for this attention are the increase of human activities on biodiversity and environmental problems. The purpose of this study is to investigate biology student teachers' conceptual frameworks regarding biodiversity.…

  15. Assessing biodiversity funding during the sixth extinction.

    PubMed

    Amato, George; DeSalle, Rob

    2012-08-01

    Funding for understanding biodiversity on this planet has had a checkered and unsatisfactory history. There have been some true successes in developing models for assessing biodiversity, but satisfactory governmental and international support has been piecemeal and unsatisfactory. A true solution to the biodiversity crisis will require greater attention from governmental and international funding agencies.

  16. Teaching Biodiversity & Evolution through Travel Course Experiences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zervanos, Stam. M.; McLaughlin, Jacqueline S.

    2003-01-01

    Biodiversity is the extraordinary variety of life in this planet. In order to be fully appreciated, biodiversity needs to be experienced firsthand, or "experientially." Thus, the standard classroom lecture format is not the ideal situation for teaching biodiversity and evolutionary concepts, in that student interest and understanding are not…

  17. Equivalence in yield from marine reserves and traditional fisheries management

    PubMed

    Hastings; Botsford

    1999-05-28

    Marine reserves have been proposed as a remedy for overfishing and declining marine biodiversity, but concern that reserves would inherently reduce yields has impeded their implementation. It was found that management of fisheries through reserves and management through effort control produce identical yields under a reasonable set of simplifying assumptions corresponding to a broad range of biological conditions. Indeed, for populations with sedentary adults (invertebrates and reef fishes), reserves have important advantages for sustainability, making marine reserves the preferred management approach.

  18. Marine Careers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Bernard L.

    The five papers in this publication on marine careers were selected so that science teachers, guidance councilors, and students could benefit from the experience and knowledge of individuals active in marine science. The areas considered are indicated by the titles: Professional Careers in Marine Science with the Federal Government, Marine Science…

  19. Marine metagenomics: strategies for the discovery of novel enzymes with biotechnological applications from marine environments

    PubMed Central

    Kennedy, Jonathan; Marchesi, Julian R; Dobson, Alan DW

    2008-01-01

    Metagenomic based strategies have previously been successfully employed as powerful tools to isolate and identify enzymes with novel biocatalytic activities from the unculturable component of microbial communities from various terrestrial environmental niches. Both sequence based and function based screening approaches have been employed to identify genes encoding novel biocatalytic activities and metabolic pathways from metagenomic libraries. While much of the focus to date has centred on terrestrial based microbial ecosystems, it is clear that the marine environment has enormous microbial biodiversity that remains largely unstudied. Marine microbes are both extremely abundant and diverse; the environments they occupy likewise consist of very diverse niches. As culture-dependent methods have thus far resulted in the isolation of only a tiny percentage of the marine microbiota the application of metagenomic strategies holds great potential to study and exploit the enormous microbial biodiversity which is present within these marine environments. PMID:18717988

  20. Marine biodiversity of Costa Rica: the phyla Sipuncula and Echiura.

    PubMed

    Dean, H K

    2001-12-01

    Fourteen species of Sipuncula belonging to 9 genera have been reported from Costa Rican waters, mostly from the Pacific coast. Three of these species are new records for Costa Rica (Phascolion strombus (Montagu 1804), Aspidosiphon (Aspidosiphon) muelleri Diesing 1851, and Aspidosiphon (Aspidosiphon) gracilis schnehageni (W. Fisher 1946)). One species of Echiura, Thalassema steinbecki Fisher 1946, in the order Echiuroinea, has been reported from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. PMID:15264522

  1. Integrating Biodiversity Data into Botanic Collections

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Background Today's species names are entry points into a web of publicly available knowledge and are integral parts of legislation concerning biological conservation and consumer safety. Species information usually is fragmented, can be misleading due to the existence of different names and might even be biased because of an identical name that is used for a different species. Safely navigating through the name space is one of the most challenging tasks when associating names with data and when decisions are made which name to include in legislation. Integrating publicly available dynamic data to characterise plant genetic resources of botanic gardens and other facilities will significantly increase the efficiency of recovering relevant information for research projects, identifying potentially invasive taxa, constructing priority lists and developing DNA-based specimen authentication. New information To demonstrate information availability and discuss integration into botanic collections, scientific names derived from botanic gardens were evaluated using the Encyclopedia of Life, The Catalogue of Life and The Plant List. 98.5% of the names could be verified by the combined use of these providers. Comparing taxonomic status information 13 % of the cases were in disagreement. About 7 % of the verified names were found to be included in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List, including one extinct taxon and three taxa with the status "extinct in the wild". As second most important factor for biodiversity loss, potential invasiveness was determined. Approximately 4 % of the verified names were detected using the Global Invasive Species Information Network, including 208 invasive taxa. According to Delivering Alien Invasive Species Inventories for Europe around 20 % of the verified names are European alien taxa including 15 of the worst European invasive taxa. Considering alternative names in the data recovery process, success increased up

  2. Seamounts are hotspots of pelagic biodiversity in the open ocean.

    PubMed

    Morato, Telmo; Hoyle, Simon D; Allain, Valerie; Nicol, Simon J

    2010-05-25

    The identification of biodiversity hotspots and their management for conservation have been hypothesized as effective ways to protect many species. There has been a significant effort to identify and map these areas at a global scale, but the coarse resolution of most datasets masks the small-scale patterns associated with coastal habitats or seamounts. Here we used tuna longline observer data to investigate the role of seamounts in aggregating large pelagic biodiversity and to identify which pelagic species are associated with seamounts. Our analysis indicates that seamounts are hotspots of pelagic biodiversity. Higher species richness was detected in association with seamounts than with coastal or oceanic areas. Seamounts were found to have higher species diversity within 30-40 km of the summit, whereas for sets close to coastal habitat the diversity was lower and fairly constant with distance. Higher probability of capture and higher number of fish caught were detected for some shark, billfish, tuna, and other by-catch species. The study supports hypotheses that seamounts may be areas of special interest for management for marine pelagic predators. PMID:20448197

  3. Seamounts are hotspots of pelagic biodiversity in the open ocean.

    PubMed

    Morato, Telmo; Hoyle, Simon D; Allain, Valerie; Nicol, Simon J

    2010-05-25

    The identification of biodiversity hotspots and their management for conservation have been hypothesized as effective ways to protect many species. There has been a significant effort to identify and map these areas at a global scale, but the coarse resolution of most datasets masks the small-scale patterns associated with coastal habitats or seamounts. Here we used tuna longline observer data to investigate the role of seamounts in aggregating large pelagic biodiversity and to identify which pelagic species are associated with seamounts. Our analysis indicates that seamounts are hotspots of pelagic biodiversity. Higher species richness was detected in association with seamounts than with coastal or oceanic areas. Seamounts were found to have higher species diversity within 30-40 km of the summit, whereas for sets close to coastal habitat the diversity was lower and fairly constant with distance. Higher probability of capture and higher number of fish caught were detected for some shark, billfish, tuna, and other by-catch species. The study supports hypotheses that seamounts may be areas of special interest for management for marine pelagic predators.

  4. Accounting for biodiversity in the dairy industry.

    PubMed

    Sizemore, Grant C

    2015-05-15

    Biodiversity is an essential part of properly functioning ecosystems, yet the loss of biodiversity currently occurs at rates unparalleled in the modern era. One of the major causes of this phenomenon is habitat loss and modification as a result of intensified agricultural practices. This paper provides a starting point for considering biodiversity within dairy production, and, although focusing primarily on the United States, findings are applicable broadly. Biodiversity definitions and assessments (e.g., indicators, tools) are proposed and reviewed. Although no single indicator or tool currently meets all the needs of comprehensive assessment, many sustainable practices are readily adoptable as ways to conserve and promote biodiversity. These practices, as well as potential funding opportunities are identified. Given the state of uncertainty in addressing the complex nature of biodiversity assessments, the adoption of generally sustainable environmental practices may be the best currently available option for protecting biodiversity on dairy lands.

  5. Accounting for biodiversity in the dairy industry.

    PubMed

    Sizemore, Grant C

    2015-05-15

    Biodiversity is an essential part of properly functioning ecosystems, yet the loss of biodiversity currently occurs at rates unparalleled in the modern era. One of the major causes of this phenomenon is habitat loss and modification as a result of intensified agricultural practices. This paper provides a starting point for considering biodiversity within dairy production, and, although focusing primarily on the United States, findings are applicable broadly. Biodiversity definitions and assessments (e.g., indicators, tools) are proposed and reviewed. Although no single indicator or tool currently meets all the needs of comprehensive assessment, many sustainable practices are readily adoptable as ways to conserve and promote biodiversity. These practices, as well as potential funding opportunities are identified. Given the state of uncertainty in addressing the complex nature of biodiversity assessments, the adoption of generally sustainable environmental practices may be the best currently available option for protecting biodiversity on dairy lands. PMID:25817566

  6. Developing indicators for European birds.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Richard D; van Strien, Arco; Vorisek, Petr; Gmelig Meyling, Adriaan W; Noble, David G; Foppen, Ruud P B; Gibbons, David W

    2005-02-28

    The global pledge to deliver 'a significant reduction in the current rate of biodiversity loss by 2010' is echoed in a number of regional and national level targets. There is broad consensus, however, that in the absence of conservation action, biodiversity will continue to be lost at a rate unprecedented in the recent era. Remarkably, we lack a basic system to measure progress towards these targets and, in particular, we lack standard measures of biodiversity and procedures to construct and assess summary statistics. Here, we develop a simple classification of biodiversity indicators to assist their development and clarify purpose. We use European birds, as example taxa, to show how robust indicators can be constructed and how they can be interpreted. We have developed statistical methods to calculate supranational, multi-species indices using population data from national annual breeding bird surveys in Europe. Skilled volunteers using standardized field methods undertake data collection where methods and survey designs differ slightly across countries. Survey plots tend to be widely distributed at a national level, covering many bird species and habitats with reasonable representation. National species' indices are calculated using log-linear regression, which allows for plot turnover. Supranational species' indices are constructed by combining the national species' indices weighted by national population sizes of each species. Supranational, multi-species indicators are calculated by averaging the resulting indices. We show that common farmland birds in Europe have declined steeply over the last two decades, whereas woodland birds have not. Evidence elsewhere shows that the main driver of farmland bird declines is increased agricultural intensification. We argue that the farmland bird indicator is a useful surrogate for trends in other elements of biodiversity in this habitat.

  7. A Census of marine life: unknowable or just unknown?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Dor, Ron; Decker, Cynthia J.

    2002-01-01

    As an introduction to the entire volume, this article outlines the relationships among the five elements of the Census of Marine Life (CoML) that create new knowledge: (1) The Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS), a marine component of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, links marine databases around the world to provide an Internet accessible, dynamic interface for comparing species-level, geo-referenced biodiversity data in relation to ocean habitats. The entire CoML field project data will be managed in and accessible through OBIS. (2) The History of Marine Animal Populations (HMAP) is a unique new synthesis of historical and biological research that will document marine biodiversity, globally, up to 500 years ago, before significant human impact, and store it in formats compatible with modern data in OBIS. (3) The Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research Working Group 118 monitors and recommends advanced marine technologies, ready to be routinely used in CoML field projects. (4) CoML Initial Field Projects develop and calibrate these technologies in selected regions to facilitate and accelerate global biodiversity research. As calibrated technologies and protocols are adopted in many regions, qualitative and quantitative biodiversity discoveries accumulate. (5) The Future of Marine Animal Populations (FMAP) program will insure that the data in OBIS are suitable for modeling and predicting changes in global biodiversity in response to fishing, pollution, and climate change challenges. It will make datasets available for hindcasting and forecasting analyses linked to physical ocean observations and assist in documenting the impacts of conservation efforts on sustainability.

  8. Effects of bioenergy production on European nature conservation options

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schleupner, C.; Schneider, U. A.

    2009-04-01

    To increase security of energy supply and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions the European Commission set out a long-term strategy for renewable energy in the European Union (EU). Bioenergy from forestry and agriculture plays a key role for both. Since the last decade a significant increase of biomass energy plantations has been observed in Europe. Concurrently, the EU agreed to halt the loss of biodiversity within its member states. One measure is the Natura2000 network of important nature sites that actually covers about 20% of the EU land surface. However, to fulfil the biodiversity target more nature conservation and restoration sites need to be designated. There are arising concerns that an increased cultivation of bioenergy crops will decrease the land available for nature reserves and for "traditional" agriculture and for