Greetings OpenChannels Community Members,
It's been a busy week again with 19 new publications added to the OpenChannels Literature Library. One that is particularly worth the time to read is the latest from Nature Communications, Marine protected area improves yield without disadvantaging fishers. While it is not Open Access, the supplementary graphs and data are free to read. Nature Asia also summarized the article in a press release at http://www.natureasia.com/en/research/highlight/8655.
-Nick Wehner, OpenChannels Project Manager
Table of Contents
Citation Information: National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, 2013
Description: Now in its 12th year, Capitol Hill Ocean Week® is the premier ocean conference held annually in Washington, D.C. Over three days, more than 550 attendees heard from Members of Congress, researchers, industry, and state and local leaders about the most vital ocean issues that must be addressed by our society. Pulling from a broad range of ocean and coastal topics, sessions this year examined how cooperation in a variety of sectors helps build ecological, economic, and social resilience in and beyond America’s coastal communities.
Utilizing the resources at our new venue, the Newseum’s Knight Conference Center, CHOW® 2013 featured an expanded online presence. During the week, nearly 1,000 tweets using #CHOW2013 reached more than 450,000 Twitter accounts, and more than 2,200 online users watched CHOW live on the Internet with OceansLIVE. Photos, video, and presentations are available at www.CapitolHillOceanWeek.org.
Using Seabird Habitat Modeling to Inform Marine Spatial Planning in Central California’s National Marine Sanctuaries
Citation Information: McGowan J, Hines E, Elliott M, Howar J, Dransfield A, et al. (2013) Using Seabird Habitat Modeling to Inform Marine Spatial Planning in Central California’s National Marine Sanctuaries. PLoS ONE 8(8): e71406. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0071406
Abstract: Understanding seabird habitat preferences is critical to future wildlife conservation and threat mitigation in California. The objective of this study was to investigate drivers of seabird habitat selection within the Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries to identify areas for targeted conservation planning. We used seabird abundance data collected by the Applied California Current Ecosystem Studies Program (ACCESS) from 2004–2011. We used zero-inflated negative binomial regression to model species abundance and distribution as a function of near surface ocean water properties, distances to geographic features and oceanographic climate indices to identify patterns in foraging habitat selection. We evaluated seasonal, inter-annual and species-specific variability of at-sea distributions for the five most abundant seabirds nesting on the Farallon Islands: western gull (Larus occidentalis), common murre (Uria aalge), Cassin’s auklet (Ptychorampus aleuticus), rhinoceros auklet (Cerorhinca monocerata) and Brandt’s cormorant (Phalacrocorax penicillatus). The waters in the vicinity of Cordell Bank and the continental shelf east of the Farallon Islands emerged as persistent and highly selected foraging areas across all species. Further, we conducted a spatial prioritization exercise to optimize seabird conservation areas with and without considering impacts of current human activities. We explored three conservation scenarios where 10, 30 and 50 percent of highly selected, species-specific foraging areas would be conserved. We compared and contrasted results in relation to existing marine protected areas (MPAs) and the future alternative energy footprint identified by the California Ocean Uses Atlas. Our results show that the majority of highly selected seabird habitat lies outside of state MPAs where threats from shipping, oil spills, and offshore energy development remain. This analysis accentuates the need for innovative marine spatial planning efforts and provides a foundation on which to build more comprehensive zoning and management in California’s National Marine Sanctuaries.
Citation Information: Ecological Indicators, Volume 36, January 2014, Pages 169–177
Authors: Daniel Kachelriess, Martin Wegmann, Matthew Gollock, Nathalie Pettorelli
Abstract: Marine protected areas (MPAs) are important tools for the conservation of marine biodiversity but their designation and effective monitoring require frequent, comprehensive, reliable data. We aim to show that remote sensing (RS), as demonstrated for terrestrial protected areas, has the potential to provide key information to support MPA management. We review existing literature on the use of RS to monitor biodiversity surrogates, e.g. ecological (e.g., primary productivity) and oceanographic (e.g., Sea Surface Temperature) parameters that have been shown to structure marine biodiversity. We then highlight the potential for RS to inform marine habitat mapping and monitoring, and discuss how RS can be used to track anthropogenic activities and its impacts on biodiversity in MPAs. Reasons for low integration of RS in MPA management and current limitations are also presented. This work concludes that RS shows great promise to support wildlife managers in their efforts to protect marine biodiversity around the world, in particular when such information is used in conjunction with data from field surveys.
Citation Information: Koeck B, Alós J, Caro A, Neveu R, Crec'hriou R, et al. (2013) Contrasting Fish Behavior in Artificial Seascapes with Implications for Resources Conservation. PLoS ONE 8(7): e69303. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0069303
Abstract: Artificial reefs are used by many fisheries managers as a tool to mitigate the impact of fisheries on coastal fish communities by providing new habitat for many exploited fish species. However, the comparison between the behavior of wild fish inhabiting either natural or artificial habitats has received less attention. Thus the spatio-temporal patterns of fish that establish their home range in one habitat or the other and their consequences of intra-population differentiation on life-history remain largely unexplored. We hypothesize that individuals with a preferred habitat (i.e. natural vs. artificial) can behave differently in terms of habitat use, with important consequences on population dynamics (e.g. life-history, mortality, and reproductive success). Therefore, using biotelemetry, 98 white seabream (Diplodus sargus) inhabiting either artificial or natural habitats were tagged and their behavior was monitored for up to eight months. Most white seabreams were highly resident either on natural or artificial reefs, with a preference for the shallow artificial reef subsets. Connectivity between artificial and natural reefs was limited for resident individuals due to great inter-habitat distances. The temporal behavioral patterns of white seabreams differed between artificial and natural reefs. Artificial-reef resident fish had a predominantly nocturnal diel pattern, whereas natural-reef resident fish showed a diurnal diel pattern. Differences in diel behavioral patterns of white seabream inhabiting artificial and natural reefs could be the expression of realized individual specialization resulting from differences in habitat configuration and resource availability between these two habitats. Artificial reefs have the potential to modify not only seascape connectivity but also the individual behavioral patterns of fishes. Future management plans of coastal areas and fisheries resources, including artificial reef implementation, should therefore consider the potential effect of habitat modification on fish behavior, which could have key implications on fish dynamics.
Report of the Joint HZG-LOICZ-ICES Workshop: Mapping Cultural Dimensions of Marine Ecosystem Services
Citation Information: ICES. 2013. Report of the Joint HZG/LOICZ/ICES Workshop: Mapping Cultural Di-mensions of Marine Ecosystem Services (WKCES), 17-21 June 2013, Geesthacht, Ger-many. ICES CM 2013/SSGHIE:12. 70pp.
Executive Summary: Joint HZG/LOICZ/ICES Workshop: Mapping Cultural Dimensions of Ecosystem Services (WKCES), Geesthacht, Germany, 17 – 21 June 2013 Chaired by Andreas Kannen and Kira Gee, brought together 13 participants from 5 nations to discuss ways of increasing the visibility of cultural values in the MSP planning process. The workshop was organ-ised along four main issues which are reflected in the chapters of the report.
a) Codifying and collecting cultural values for MSP purposes
There are various problems with collecting and describing cultural values. One is the absence of universally valid classifications. The word “connection” was used by the workshop as an inclusive descriptor of the many ways that people relate to and value ecosystems. Given the wide range of cultural contexts, and focusing on indigenous cultures as a specific example, a key conclusion is that cultural values cannot be de-fined through pre-set criteria. “What is a cultural value” needs to be defined by the stakeholders, rightsholders and communities of interest within the planning area and in those spatial areas that will experience the impacts of a planned project. This has implications for the planning process.
b) Methods for identifying marine places of socio-cultural importance
“Culturally significant areas” are proposed in analogy to “ecologically significant areas”. To identify an area as culturally significant is to conclude that the area pro-vides cultural services that are critical to the wellbeing and identity of the given community. Criteria for identifying cultural significance include cultural uniqueness, broad cultural/community reliance, importance of the feature to the resilience of the social-ecological system, degree of tradition, and dramatic cultural change. Loca-tion/spatial extent, temporal scale, and the environmental quality required for the cultural feature or practice in question should also be determined. A baseline of cul-tural features or practices of importance is suggested as a basis for planning.
c) Rating impacts on cultural places of importance
Risk assessment identifies vulnerable ecosystem services based on existing and future pressures in the planning area and ascertains the potential of losing a given cultural ecosystem service. The tolerability of the risks in terms of the potential consequence to cultural integrity should be evaluated in collaboration with the community of in-terest. The workshop used pre-agreed risk criteria to draw up a classification of risks as extreme, very high, medium, low and negligible.
d) Mapping spatially relevant information
Mapping cultural ecosystem services is challenging due to their often intangible and varied character. As such there is limited existing evidence of significance and spatial and temporal extent of cultural ecosystem services. However, mapping cultural eco-system services is a powerful tool for grasping the socio-cultural realities of commu-nities, regions, landscapes and ecosystems. Mapping enables localization of critical areas for cultural services management, facilitates better comparison to provisioning and regulating services, and allows consideration of place-based ecological knowledge. The workshop brought together a range of methods that have been used to map cultural ecosystem services and some of the challenges associated with map-ping.
Results will be published as a Cooperative Research Report setting out ‘good prac-tice’ suggestions for identifying and mapping culturally significant marine areas. A key recommendation is to expand WGMPCZM to offer a platform for the continued exploration of CES in MSP.
EU marine strategy framework directive (MSFD) and marine spatial planning (MSP): Which is the more dominant and practicable contributor to maritime policy in the UK?
Citation Information: Marine Policy, Available online 15 August 2013
Authors: Jonathon Brennan, Clare Fitzsimmons, Tim Gray, Laura Raggatt
Abstract: This paper is a comparative analysis of the contribution to UK marine governance of two recent EU initiatives: the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) and Marine Spatial Planning (MSP). MSFD imposed a duty on Member States to achieve Good Environmental Status (GES) in four regional seas, while MSP required Member States to replace their fragmented, sector-based system of maritime decision making with an integrated approach. This paper explains MSFD and MSP, examines their relationship, and compares their practicability, concluding that MSP is both the more dominant and the more practicable instrument, reflecting the UK's preference for sustainable development over conservationism in marine policy. A recent proposal by the European Commission to make MSP and integrated coastal management a Directive reinforces the UK position.
Deep-sea sponge grounds enhance diversity and abundance of epibenthic megafauna in the Northwest Atlantic
Citation Information: Beazley, L. I., Kenchington E. L., Murillo, F. J., and Sacau, M. Deep-sea sponge grounds enhance diversity and abundance of epibenthic megafauna in the Northwest Atlantic. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, doi:10.1093/icesjms/fst124.
Abstract: The influence of structure-forming deep-water sponge grounds on the composition, diversity, and abundance of the local epibenthic megafaunal community of the Flemish Pass area, Northwest Atlantic was statistically assessed. These habitats are considered vulnerable marine ecosystems and, therefore, warrant conservation measures to protect them from bottom fishing activities. The epibenthic megafauna were quantified from four photographic transects, three of which were located on the western slope of the Flemish Cap with an overall depth range of 444–940 m, and the fourth in the southern Flemish Pass between 1328 and 1411 m. We observed a diverse megafaunal community dominated by large numbers of ophiuroids and sponges. On the slope of the Flemish Cap, sponge grounds were dominated by axinellid and polymastid sponges, while the deeper sponge ground in the southern Flemish Pass was formed mainly by geodiids and Asconema sp. The presence of structure-forming sponges was associated with a higher biodiversity and abundance of associated megafauna compared with non-sponge habitat. The composition of megafauna significantly differed between sponge grounds and non-sponge grounds and also between different sponge morphologies. Surface chlorophyll a and near-bottom salinity were important environmental determinants in generalized linear models of megafaunal species richness and abundance.
The Substantial First Impact of Bottom Fishing on Rare Biodiversity Hotspots: A Dilemma for Evidence-Based Conservation
Citation Information: Cook R, Fariñas-Franco JM, Gell FR, Holt RHF, Holt T, et al. (2013) The Substantial First Impact of Bottom Fishing on Rare Biodiversity Hotspots: A Dilemma for Evidence-Based Conservation. PLoS ONE 8(8): e69904. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0069904
Abstract: This study describes the impact of the first passage of two types of bottom-towed fishing gear on rare protected shellfish-reefs formed by the horse mussel Modiolus modiolus (L.). One of the study sites was trawled and the other was scallop-dredged. Divers collected HD video imagery of epifauna from quadrats at the two study sites and directed infaunal samples from one site.
The total number of epifaunal organisms was significantly reduced following a single pass of a trawl (90%) or scallop dredge (59%), as was the diversity of the associated community and the total number of M. modiolus at the trawled site. At both sites declines in anthozoans, hydrozoans, bivalves, echinoderms and ascidians accounted for most of the change. A year later, no recovery was evident at the trawled site and significantly fewer infaunal taxa (polychaetes, malacostracans, bivalves and ophuroids) were recorded in the trawl track.
The severity of the two types of impact reflected the undisturbed status of the habitats compared to previous studies. As a ‘priority habitat’ the nature of the impacts described on M. modiolus communities are important to the development of conservation management policy and indicators of condition in Marine Protected Areas (EU Habitats Directive) as well as indicators of ‘Good Environmental Status’ under the European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive.
Conservation managers are under pressure to support decisions with good quality evidence. Elsewhere, indirect studies have shown declines of M. modiolus biogenic communities in fishing grounds. However, given the protected status of the rare habitat, premeditated demonstration of direct impact is unethical or illegal in Marine Protected Areas. This study therefore provides a unique opportunity to investigate the impact from fishing gear whilst at the same time reflecting on the dilemma of evidence-based conservation management.
Citation Information: Zitterbart DP, Kindermann L, Burkhardt E, Boebel O (2013) Automatic Round-the-Clock Detection of Whales for Mitigation from Underwater Noise Impacts. PLoS ONE 8(8): e71217. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0071217
Abstract: Loud hydroacoustic sources, such as naval mid-frequency sonars or airguns for marine geophysical prospecting, have been increasingly criticized for their possible negative effects on marine mammals and were implicated in several whale stranding events. Competent authorities now regularly request the implementation of mitigation measures, including the shut-down of acoustic sources when marine mammals are sighted within a predefined exclusion zone. Commonly, ship-based marine mammal observers (MMOs) are employed to visually monitor this zone. This approach is personnel-intensive and not applicable during night time, even though most hydroacoustic activities run day and night. This study describes and evaluates an automatic, ship-based, thermographic whale detection system that continuously scans the ship’s environs for whale blows. Its performance is independent of daylight and exhibits an almost uniform, omnidirectional detection probability within a radius of 5 km. It outperforms alerted observers in terms of number of detected blows and ship-whale encounters. Our results demonstrate that thermal imaging can be used for reliable and continuous marine mammal protection.
Citation Information: Kersting DK, Bensoussan N, Linares C (2013) Long-Term Responses of the Endemic Reef-Builder Cladocora caespitosa to Mediterranean Warming. PLoS ONE 8(8): e70820. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0070820
Abstract: Recurrent climate-induced mass-mortalities have been recorded in the Mediterranean Sea over the past 15 years. Cladocora caespitosa, the sole zooxanthellate scleractinian reef-builder in the Mediterranean, is among the organisms affected by these episodes. Extensive bioconstructions of this endemic coral are very rare at the present time and are threatened by several stressors. In this study, we assessed the long-term response of this temperate coral to warming sea-water in the Columbretes Islands (NW Mediterranean) and described, for the first time, the relationship between recurrent mortality events and local sea surface temperature (SST) regimes in the Mediterranean Sea. A water temperature series spanning more than 20 years showed a summer warming trend of 0.06°C per year and an increased frequency of positive thermal anomalies. Mortality resulted from tissue necrosis without massive zooxanthellae loss and during the 11-year study, necrosis was recorded during nine summers separated into two mortality periods (2003–2006 and 2008–2012). The highest necrosis rates were registered during the first mortality period, after the exceptionally hot summer of 2003. Although necrosis and temperature were significantly associated, the variability in necrosis rates during summers with similar thermal anomalies pointed to other acting factors. In this sense, our results showed that these differences were more closely related to the interannual temperature context and delayed thermal stress after extreme summers, rather than to acclimatisation and adaption processes.
Citation Information: Hobbs J-PA, Frisch AJ, Ford BM, Thums M, Saenz-Agudelo P, et al. (2013) Taxonomic, Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Bleaching in Anemones Inhabited by Anemonefishes. PLoS ONE 8(8): e70966. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0070966
Rising sea temperatures are causing significant destruction to coral reef ecosystems due to coral mortality from thermally-induced bleaching (loss of symbiotic algae and/or their photosynthetic pigments). Although bleaching has been intensively studied in corals, little is known about the causes and consequences of bleaching in other tropical symbiotic organisms.
This study used underwater visual surveys to investigate bleaching in the 10 species of anemones that host anemonefishes. Bleaching was confirmed in seven anemone species (with anecdotal reports of bleaching in the other three species) at 10 of 19 survey locations spanning the Indo-Pacific and Red Sea, indicating that anemone bleaching is taxonomically and geographically widespread. In total, bleaching was observed in 490 of the 13,896 surveyed anemones (3.5%); however, this percentage was much higher (19–100%) during five major bleaching events that were associated with periods of elevated water temperatures and coral bleaching. There was considerable spatial variation in anemone bleaching during most of these events, suggesting that certain sites and deeper waters might act as refuges. Susceptibility to bleaching varied between species, and in some species, bleaching caused reductions in size and abundance.
Anemones are long-lived with low natural mortality, which makes them particularly vulnerable to predicted increases in severity and frequency of bleaching events. Population viability will be severely compromised if anemones and their symbionts cannot acclimate or adapt to rising sea temperatures. Anemone bleaching also has negative effects to other species, particularly those that have an obligate relationship with anemones. These effects include reductions in abundance and reproductive output of anemonefishes. Therefore, the future of these iconic and commercially valuable coral reef fishes is inextricably linked to the ability of host anemones to cope with rising sea temperatures associated with climate change.
Citation Information: Valuing Nature Network, 2013
Authors: Tavis Potts, Emma Jackson, Daryl Burdon, Justine Saunders, Jonathan Atkins, Emily Hastings, Olivia Langmead.
Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between ecosystem services (ES) provided by coastal ecosystems and the designation and management of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). ES are defined as the outputs of ecosystems from which people and society derive benefits (MA, 2005). The hypothesis is that relationships exist between the provision of a range of ES and the features protected by the designation of MPAs and this protection will maintain these features in good ecological condition and in some cases restore ecological function with positive effects on the delivery of services. While all coastal and marine habitats provide a range of service functions, the implementation of an MPA may result in a ‘lens effect’ deriving from an improvement in the quality or supply of an ecosystem service as pressures upon the feature are minimised. As the number of MPA designations grows, system-wide benefits to communities from improvements in delivery of a range of services may be realised. Specific questions explored in this paper include:
- What ES do MPAs provide?
- How are ES concepts built into policy relating to MPAs?
- What ES may protected features (both habitats and species) generate? How will MPA management affect the output of ES from sites?
This paper will focus on the United Kingdom (UK) as a case study, given the contrasting approaches to MPA designation applied by the English, Scottish and Welsh Governments, although the approach and findings will be discussed within the wider European and international context.
Sampling selectivity in acoustic-trawl surveys of Pacific sardine (Sardinops sagax) biomass and length distribution
Citation Information: Demer, D. A., Zwolinski, J. P., Cutter, G. R. Jr, Byers, K. A., Macewicz, B. J., and Hill, K. T. Sampling selectivity in acoustic-trawl surveys of Pacific sardine (Sardinops sagax) biomass and length distribution. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, doi.10.1093/icesjms/fst116.
Abstract: To annually assess the northern stock of Pacific sardine (Sardinops sagax) in the California Current and set harvest quotas for the US fishery, managers have used an age-structured stock synthesis model fitted with results from acoustic-trawl (ATM), daily-egg-production, and aerial-photogrammetric survey methods, fishery landing and individual-length data, and many assumed or empirically derived parameters. In these assessments, sardine landed at ports spanning from Ensenada, México to Vancouver Island, Canada were assumed to be solely from the northern stock. It was also assumed that the ATM estimates of sardine biomass were negligibly biased for the sizes of fish sampled by the survey trawls (i.e., catchability q = 1 for sardine standard length (SL) values greater than ∼17 cm). Due to these catchability and length-selectivity assumptions, the ATM- and assessment-estimated abundances are mostly similar for larger sardine. However, the assessment estimates include large abundances of small sardine (SL values less than ∼15 cm) that are not represented in either the ATM-survey results or the fishery landings, and generally did not recruit to the migrating northern stock sampled by the ATM surveys. We considered four explanations for this disparity: (i) the ATM length-selectivity assumption is correct; (ii) the non-recruiting small fish may comprise a smaller portion of the stock than indicated by the assessments; (iii) during years of low recruitment success, those size classes may be virtually completely fished by the Ensenada and San Pedro fisheries; or (iv) they may belong to the southern sardine stock. This investigation emphasizes the previously identified importance of differentiating samples from the northern and southern stocks and surveying their entire domains.
Citation Information: Marine Pollution Bulletin, Available online 12 August 2013
Authors: Catarina Frazão Santos, Jaqueline Michel, Mário Neves, João Janeiro, Francisco Andrade, Michael Orbach
Abstract: A flow of key information links marine spatial planning (MSP) and oil spill risk analysis (OSRA), two distinct processes needed to achieve true sustainable management of coastal and marine areas. OSRA informs MSP on areas of high risk to oil spills allowing a redefinition of planning objectives and the relocation of activities to increase the ecosystem’s overall utility and resilience. Concomitantly, MSP continuously generates a large amount of data that is vital to OSRA. The Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) mapping system emerges as an operational tool to implement the MSP–OSRA link. Given the high level of commonalities between ESI and MSP data (both in biophysical and human dimensions), ESI tools (both paper maps and dynamic GIS-based product) are easily developed to further inform MSP and oil spill risk management. Finally, several other benefits from implementing the MSP–OSRA link are highlighted.
A review of the concepts of enjoyment, appreciation and understanding as applied to Victoria’s Marine Protected Areas (MPA)
Citation Information: A review of the concepts of enjoyment, appreciation and understanding as applied to Victoria’s Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), by A. Curtis, P, Davidson. Institute for Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Albury, NSW, 2640. 1 v., - (Report / ILWS, No. 71).
Description: The Victorian Environmental Assessment Council (VEAC) is undertaking an investigation into the outcomes of the establishment of Victoria’s marine protected areas (MPAs) (Figure 1). VEAC’s ‘Marine Investigation’ will examine and assess: the performance and management of Victoria’s MPAs in meeting their establishment purposes, and ongoing threats and challenges to the management of these areas. This report is relevant to the MPAs establishment purposes of providing opportunities for recreation and education associated with enjoyment, appreciation and understanding (EA&U) of the natural environment in Victoria’s MPAs.
To inform VEAC’s investigation of Victorian MPAs, a Charles Sturt University (CSU) team of Professor Allan Curtis and Dr Penny Davidson was contracted to provide an expert review of the concepts and critical analysis of existing information related to the EA&U objectives for Victoria’s existing MPAs.
The core of this report is a review of the literature that provides a theoretical understanding of ‘enjoyment’, ‘appreciation’ and ‘understanding’ (EA&U) of the natural environment. An interpretation of current best practice with respect to evaluating EA&U across three key stakeholder groups follows. The three key stakeholder groups are onsite visitors, virtual (or off-site) visitors and non-visitors. Critical comment is also made regarding ongoing challenges and threats to achieving ‘enjoyment, appreciation and understanding’ purposes.
Victoria’s MPAs contribute to Victorian’s recreation options. Pont et al. (2012) indicate that 19% of Victorians visited MPAs in the last 12 months. Maddern (2012) established that 41% of people who visit marine national parks and marine sanctuaries will do so once every month or more (another 30% visit about once every six months).The landscape associated with MPAs (i.e. coast) is very familiar to many people, but the visitor experience has different aspects to that for a terrestrial protected area. Many access issues will be the same (e.g. bad weather, requirement of specialised equipment to visit the site) but on the other hand the majority of a MPAs – the underwater environment – receives visitation by a very small proportion of the population, and then only to part of the underwater environment. MPAs are frequently experienced through a surface vista, or by recreational boaters/fishers as a thoroughfare and resource1. This means that despite considerable familiarity with coastal environments the MPAs purposes of understanding and appreciation commences with a lower base line of knowledge in the community than for terrestrial protected areas.
Mediterranean marine protected areas and climate change: a guide to regional monitoring and adaptation opportunities
Citation Information: Otero, M., Garrabou, J., Vargas, M. 2013. Mediterranean Marine Protected Areas and climate change: A guide to regional monitoring and adaptation opportunities. Malaga, Spain: IUCN. 52 pages.
Description: Climate change is likely to have drastic effects on the habitat of the Mediterranean flora and fauna, but its impacts will vary between Mediterranean regions and between marine protected areas (MPAs) within each region. This IUCN guide analyzes the threats and effects of climate change on Mediterranean marine biodiversity and provides MPA managers with tools to monitor and mitigate changes in their own MPA.
Improving Ocean Management through the Use of Ecological Principles and Integrated Ecosystem Assessments
Citation Information: BioScience; Vol. 63, No. 8 (August 2013), pp. 619-631
Authors: Melissa M. Foley, Matthew H. Armsby, Erin E. Prahler, Margaret R. Caldwell, Ashley L. Erickson, John N. Kittinger, Larry B. Crowder and Phillip S. Levin
Abstract: The US National Ocean Policy calls for ecosystem-based management (EBM) of the ocean to help realize the vision advanced in the 2010 Executive Order on the Stewardship of the Ocean, Our Coasts, and the Great Lakes. However, no specific approach for incorporating EBM into planning was provided. We explore how a set of ecological principles and ecosystem vulnerability concepts can be integrated into emerging comprehensive assessment frameworks, including Australia’s National Marine Bioregional Assessments, California’s Marine Life Protection Act Initiative’s regional profiles, Canada’s Eastern Scotian Shelf Integrated Management Initiative, and the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Integrated Ecosystem Assessment (IEA) program, to transition to ecosystem-based ocean planning. We examine NOAA’s IEA framework to demonstrate how these concepts could be incorporated into existing frameworks. Although our discussion is focused on US ocean policy, comprehensive ecological assessments are applicable to a wide array of management strategies and planning processes.
Citation Information: Kelble CR, Loomis DK, Lovelace S, Nuttle WK, Ortner PB, et al. (2013) The EBM-DPSER Conceptual Model: Integrating Ecosystem Services into the DPSIR Framework. PLoS ONE 8(8): e70766. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0070766
Abstract: There is a pressing need to integrate biophysical and human dimensions science to better inform holistic ecosystem management supporting the transition from single species or single-sector management to multi-sector ecosystem-based management. Ecosystem-based management should focus upon ecosystem services, since they reflect societal goals, values, desires, and benefits. The inclusion of ecosystem services into holistic management strategies improves management by better capturing the diversity of positive and negative human-natural interactions and making explicit the benefits to society. To facilitate this inclusion, we propose a conceptual model that merges the broadly applied Driver, Pressure, State, Impact, and Response (DPSIR) conceptual model with ecosystem services yielding a Driver, Pressure, State, Ecosystem service, and Response (EBM-DPSER) conceptual model. The impact module in traditional DPSIR models focuses attention upon negative anthropomorphic impacts on the ecosystem; by replacing impacts with ecosystem services the EBM-DPSER model incorporates not only negative, but also positive changes in the ecosystem. Responses occur as a result of changes in ecosystem services and include inter alia management actions directed at proactively altering human population or individual behavior and infrastructure to meet societal goals. The EBM-DPSER conceptual model was applied to the Florida Keys and Dry Tortugas marine ecosystem as a case study to illustrate how it can inform management decisions. This case study captures our system-level understanding and results in a more holistic representation of ecosystem and human society interactions, thus improving our ability to identify trade-offs. The EBM-DPSER model should be a useful operational tool for implementing EBM, in that it fully integrates our knowledge of all ecosystem components while focusing management attention upon those aspects of the ecosystem most important to human society and does so within a framework already familiar to resource managers.
Citation Information: Nature Communications: 4, 2347 doi:10.1038/ncomms3347; August 2013
Authors: Sven E. Kerwath, Henning Winker, Albrecht Götz & Colin G. Attwood
Abstract: Potential fishery benefits of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are widely acknowledged, yet seldom demonstrated, as fishery data series that straddle MPA establishment are seldom available. Here we postulate, based on a 15-year time series of nation-wide, spatially referenced catch and effort data, that the establishment of the Goukamma MPA (18 km alongshore; 40 km2) benefited the adjacent fishery for roman (Chrysoblephus laticeps), a South African endemic seabream. Roman-directed catch-per-unit-effort (CPUE) in the vicinity of the new MPA immediately increased, contradicting trends across this species’ distribution. The increase continued after 5 years, the time lag expected for larval export, effectively doubling the pre-MPA CPUE after 10 years. We find no indication that establishing the MPA caused a systematic drop in total catch or increased travel distances for the fleet. Our results provide rare empirical evidence of rapidly increasing catch rates after MPA implementation without measurable disadvantages for fishers.