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Global seabird response to forage fish depletion-one-third for the birds
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement.
Scottish Oceans Institute, University of St Andrews.
Ifremer, UMR EME 212, Centre de Recherche Halieutique Méditerranéenne et Tropicale.
Stockholm University, Stockholm Resilience Centre, Baltic Nest Institute.
2011 (English)In: Science, ISSN 0036-8075, Vol. 334, no 6063, 1703-1706 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Determining the form of key predator-prey relationships is critical for understanding marine ecosystem dynamics. Using a comprehensive global database, we quantified the effect of fluctuations in food abundance on seabird breeding success. We identified a threshold in prey (fish and krill, termed “forage fish”) abundance below which seabirds experience consistently reduced and more variable productivity. This response was common to all seven ecosystems and 14 bird species examined within the Atlantic, Pacific, and Southern Oceans. The threshold approximated one-third of the maximum prey biomass observed in long-term studies. This provides an indicator of the minimal forage fish biomass needed to sustain seabird productivity over the long term.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 334, no 6063, 1703-1706 p.
National Category
Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-68687DOI: 10.1126/science.1212928ISI: 000298344000067OAI: diva2:472932
Other authors: Tycho Anker-Nilssen, Robert J. M. Crawford, Robert W. Furness, James A. Mills, Eugene J. Murphy, Henrik Österblom, Michelle Paleczny, John F. Piatt, Jean-Paul Roux, Lynne Shannon14, William J. SydemanAvailable from: 2012-01-04 Created: 2012-01-04 Last updated: 2012-01-29Bibliographically approved

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