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  • 1.
    Perry, Diana
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Staveley, Thomas A. B.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Gullström, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Habitat Connectivity of Fish in Temperate Shallow-Water Seascapes2018In: Frontiers in Marine Science, E-ISSN 2296-7745, Vol. 4, article id 440Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Movements of organisms comprise a fundamental aspect of coastal habitat connectivity. Determining the distribution and co-existence of habitat specialists and generalists in shallow-water seascapes leads to a better understanding of the strength of connectivity-driven community patterns in coastal areas. In this study, unbaited Remote Underwater Video (RUV) systems were used to examine habitat usage and connectivity of fish within six shallow-water coastal seascapes on the Swedish west coast. Within each seascape, video sampling was conducted at three different shallow-water habitats: seagrass meadows, rock-macroalgae and unvegetated areas, in June 2014. Comparative analyses showed that the shallow-water fish community was similar in adjacent habitats within a seascape, though abundances of fish were higher within the structurally complex habitats. All habitats were dominated by juveniles, highlighting the importance of the coastal seascape for early fish life stages. The findings demonstrate that adjacent shallow-water habitats in temperate coastal waters are linked through similar species utilization and that the coastal matrix could be regarded in terms of a seascape nursery for fish. The study highlights the importance of considering shallow-water seascape connectivity in coastal conservation planning and management.

  • 2.
    Perry, Diana
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Staveley, Thomas A. B.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Hammar, Linus
    Meyers, Alyssa
    Lindborg, Regina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.
    Gullström, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Temperate fish community variation over seasons in relation to large-scale geographic seascape variables2018In: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, ISSN 0706-652X, E-ISSN 1205-7533, Vol. 75, no 10, p. 1723-1732Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In shallow-water marine environments, ecosystem functioning is a complex interworking of fine-scale characteristics and region-wide factors, and the importance of these variables can vary on multiple temporal and spatial scales. This underwater video study targeted seasonal changes in the fish community of seagrass habitats along the Swedish west coast and the influence of offshore seascape variables (latitudinal position, wave exposure, open ocean, and deep water). Results showed that fish assemblage structure exhibited seasonal changes between summer and autumn and strong spatiotemporal variations in the importance of offshore factors affecting shallow-water fish communities. In summer, abundance from the Gobiidae family responded to wave exposure, whereas the Gadidae family and juvenile migrant habitat preference guild responded to latitudinal position and proximity to deep water. In autumn, deep water was related to abundance of Gadidae and juvenile migrants, whereas latitudinal position influenced Gasterosteidae. These findings underscore the importance of understanding the influence of offshore factors on facets of coastal fish assemblages to address large-scale geographic connectivity along nearshore–offshore gradients.

  • 3.
    Staveley, Thomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Fish in the coastal seascape: exploring ecological processes and connectivity for conservation of temperate fish communities2019Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The need to understand patterns and processes in the marine environment has never been so profound as today, particularly as anthropogenic pressures upon coastal regions are drastically affecting habitats and species across a vast range. One approach to further understand these patterns and processes is through the use of seascape ecology methods. Pertinently, fish are ideal candidates to use in many seascape ecological studies due to their mobility and potential to connect a multitude of patches and habitats throughout their life cycle. They also serve as fundamental components in coastal food webs and are of economic benefit. This thesis strives to answer how fish assemblages are affected by ecological and environmental patterns and changes in temperate seascapes throughout the Swedish Skagerrak and the Baltic Sea. 

    Initially, the spatial arrangement of benthic habitat patches in coastal Skagerrak was investigated in relation to the fish community inhabiting seagrass meadows. Seascape structure and complexity was shown to create optimal or sub-optimal areas for certain parts of the fish community. For instance, simpler seascapes (e.g. less habitat patches and edges) were found to have a higher density of juvenile fish, while wrasse densities were related to more complex seascapes. This offers insights into the consequences of spatial patterning in the marine environment and possible effects of habitat loss in the ecosystem (paper I). Through surveying fish assemblages in common, shallow-water habitats, the more structurally complex habitats, i.e. seagrass and macroalgae, were found to harbour a greater fish abundance compared to the less complex unvegetated soft bottoms. However, all three habitats were deemed important for their role in supporting juvenile fish species, thus suggesting that embayments in this environment might function as seascape nurseries (paper II). The importance of connectivity of a marine predator was discovered using acoustic telemetry and network analysis. This study demonstrated that sea surface temperature was of major importance for Atlantic cod movement dynamics within a fjord system as well as revealing the significance of localised connectivity at varying spatial and temporal scales (paper III). Finally, spatial pattern relationships and fish assemblages were explored in Baltic seagrass meadows. Fish assemblages were dominated by meso-predators (i.e. three-spined stickleback) both during summer and autumn, with a noticeable lack of larger piscivorous species throughout both seasons. Correlative analysis showed that fish densities were influenced by seagrass habitat structure (negatively), area of bare sediment (negatively) and habitat patch diversity (positively) (paper IV).  

    This thesis has lifted a central role in addressing important seascape ecology questions and tools in the temperate marine environment. Specifically, it highlights the importance of analysing patterns and processes at multiple scales to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the relationships between fish and their environments, which is relevant for marine spatial planning and conservation. 

  • 4.
    Staveley, Thomas A. B.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences. AquaBiota Water Research, Sweden.
    Jacoby, David M. P.
    Perry, Diana
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences. University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    van der Meijs, Felix
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Lagenfelt, Ingvar
    Cremle, Mikael
    Gullstrom, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences. University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
    Sea surface temperature dictates movement and habitat connectivity of Atlantic cod in a coastal fjord system2019In: Ecology and Evolution, ISSN 2045-7758, E-ISSN 2045-7758Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    While movements of organisms have been studied across a myriad of environments, information is often lacking regarding spatio-seasonal patterning in complex temperate coastal systems. Highly mobile fish form an integral part of marine food webs providing linkages within and among habitats, between patches of habitats, and at different life stages. We investigated how movement, activity, and connectivity patterns of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) are influenced by dynamic environmental conditions. Movement patterns of 39 juvenile and subadult Atlantic cod were assessed in two coastal sites in the Swedish Skagerrak for 5 months. We used passive acoustic telemetry and network analysis to assess seasonal and spatial movement patterns of cod and their relationships to different environmental factors, using statistical correlations, analysis of recurrent spatial motifs, and generalized linear mixed models. Temperature, in combination with physical barriers, precludes significant connectivity (complex motifs) within the system. Sea surface temperature had a strong influence on connectivity (node strength, degree, and motif frequency), where changes from warmer summer waters to colder winter waters significantly reduced movement activity of fish. As the seasons changed, movement of fish gradually decreased from large-scale (km) linkages in the summer to more localized movement patterns in the winter (limited to 100s m). Certain localized areas, however, were identified as important for connectivity throughout the whole study period, likely due to these multiple-habitat areas fulfilling functions required for foraging and shelter. This study provides new knowledge regarding inshore movement dynamics of juvenile and subadult Atlantic cod that use complex, coastal fjord systems. The findings show that connectivity, seasonal patterns in particular, should be carefully considered when selecting conservation areas to promote marine stewardship.

  • 5.
    Staveley, Thomas A. B.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Perry, Diana
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Lindborg, Regina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.
    Gullström, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Seascape structure and complexity influence temperate seagrass fish assemblage composition2017In: Ecography, ISSN 0906-7590, E-ISSN 1600-0587, Vol. 40, no 8, p. 936-946Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Understanding how spatial patterning relates to ecological processes is fundamental to define important species-environment associations at broader scales. Analyses targeting habitat structure (i.e. composition and configuration) in terrestrial landscapes are increasing, but similar studies in marine landscapes are still relatively uncommon. In this study, we explored how seascape structure and complexity (determined from significant spatial pattern metrics) influenced summer and autumn fish assemblage composition in 30 seagrass (Zostera marina) meadows along the west coast of Sweden. Species density was not influenced by seascape structure in any season. In contrast, the majority of significant fish assemblage variables were influenced by seascape structure during the summer (i.e. abundance and proportion of juveniles, abundance of Labridae and abundance of occasional shallow-water visitors) whilst fewer in the autumn (i.e. abundance of occasional shallow-water visitors and Synganthidae). For instance, less complex seascapes were more suitable for juvenile assemblages in summer, as these seascapes exhibit larger patch sizes of appropriate habitat (e.g. Z. marina) and less edge boundaries providing refuges from predators and food resources. Abundances of migrating fish, such as the sea trout Salmo trutta, also responded positively to a less complex seascape in the summer though perhaps ecological processes, such as prey availability, were additional contributing factors driving this relationship. High complexity seascapes only had a positive influence on the abundance of taxa using multiple habitats (Labridae during the summer). Our study shows that fish assemblages in temperate marine environments are significantly linked to spatial habitat patterning and seascape complexity. This offers valuable insights into species-habitat-seascape linkages, information important for coastal conservation and marine spatial planning.

  • 6.
    Staveley, Thomas
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Hernvall, Patrick
    Stjärnkvist, Nellie
    van der Meijs, Felix
    Wikström, Sofia
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Stockholm University Baltic Sea Centre.
    Gullström, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Exploring seagrass fish assemblages in relation to the habitat patch mosaic in the brackish Baltic SeaManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 7.
    Staveley, Thomas
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Jacoby, David
    Perry, Diana
    van der Meijs, Felix
    Lagenfelt, Ingvar
    Cremle, Mikael
    Gullström, Martin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
    Sea surface temperature dictates movement and connectivity of Atlantic cod in a coastal fjord systemManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
1 - 7 of 7
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