Confronting the coral reef crisis
Bellwood, D.R., Hughes, T.P., Folke, C., and Nystrom, M. (2004) Confronting the coral reef crisis. Nature, 429 (6994). pp. 827-833.
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View at Publisher Website: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature02691
The worldwide decline of coral reefs calls for an urgent reassessment of current management practices. Confronting large-scale crises requires a major scaling-up of management efforts based on an improved understanding of the ecological processes that underlie reef resilience. Managing for improved resilience, incorporating the role of human activity in shaping ecosystems, provides a basis for coping with uncertainty, future changes and ecological surprises. Here we review the ecological roles of critical functional groups (for both corals and reef fishes) that are fundamental to understanding resilience and avoiding phase shifts from coral dominance to less desirable, degraded ecosystems. We identify striking biogeographic differences in the species richness and composition of functional groups, which highlight the vulnerability of Caribbean reef ecosystems. These findings have profound implications for restoration of degraded reefs, management of fisheries, and the focus on marine protected areas and biodiversity hotspots as priorities for conservation.
|Item Type:||Article (Refereed Research - C1)|
© 2004 Nature Publishing Group : This journal is available online - use hypertext links above.
|Keywords:||coral reefs, resilience, management, ecology, ecosystems, conservation, ecological processes, human activities, functional groups|
|FoR Codes:||05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 100%|
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 0%
|SEO Codes:||96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960508 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Mining Environments @ 100%|
|Deposited On:||14 Jun 2007|
|Last Modified:||17 May 2013 00:18|
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|Citation Counts with External Providers:||Web of Science: 772|
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