Effects of climate-driven primary production change on marine food webs: Implications for fisheries and conservation

Brown, C. J., Fulton, E. A., Hobday, A. J., Matear, R. J., Possingham, H. P., Bulman, C., Christensen, V., Forrest, R. E., Gehrke, P. C., Gribble, N. A., Griffiths, S. P., Lozano-Montes, H., Martin, J. M., Metcalf, S., Okey, T. A., Watson, R. and Richardson, A. J. (2010) Effects of climate-driven primary production change on marine food webs: Implications for fisheries and conservation. Global Change Biology, 16 4: 1194-1212. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2486.2009.02046.x

Author Brown, C. J.
Fulton, E. A.
Hobday, A. J.
Matear, R. J.
Possingham, H. P.
Bulman, C.
Christensen, V.
Forrest, R. E.
Gehrke, P. C.
Gribble, N. A.
Griffiths, S. P.
Lozano-Montes, H.
Martin, J. M.
Metcalf, S.
Okey, T. A.
Watson, R.
Richardson, A. J.
Title Effects of climate-driven primary production change on marine food webs: Implications for fisheries and conservation
Journal name Global Change Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1354-1013
Publication date 2010-04-01
Year available 2009
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2486.2009.02046.x
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 16
Issue 4
Start page 1194
End page 1212
Total pages 19
Editor S. Long
Place of publication Oxford, England, U.K.
Publisher Blackwell
Language eng
Subject C1
960305 Ecosystem Adaptation to Climate Change
050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change
Abstract Climate change is altering the rate and distribution of primary production in the world's oceans. Primary production is critical to maintaining biodiversity and supporting fishery catches, but predicting the response of populations to primary production change is complicated by predation and competition interactions. We simulated the effects of change in primary production on diverse marine ecosystems across a wide latitudinal range in Australia using the marine food web model Ecosim. We link models of primary production of lower trophic levels (phytoplankton and benthic producers) under climate change with Ecosim to predict changes in fishery catch, fishery value, biomass of animals of conservation interest, and indicators of community composition. Under a plausible climate change scenario, primary production will increase around Australia and generally this benefits fisheries catch and value and leads to increased biomass of threatened marine animals such as turtles and sharks. However, community composition is not strongly affected. Sensitivity analyses indicate overall positive linear responses of functional groups to primary production change. Responses are robust to the ecosystem type and the complexity of the model used. However, model formulations with more complex predation and competition interactions can reverse the expected responses for some species, resulting in catch declines for some fished species and localized declines of turtle and marine mammal populations under primary productivity increases. We conclude that climate-driven primary production change needs to be considered by marine ecosystem managers and more specifically, that production increases can simultaneously benefit fisheries and conservation. Greater focus on incorporating predation and competition interactions into models will significantly improve the ability to identify species and industries most at risk from climate change.
Keyword Climate change
Food web model
Marine biodiversity
Ecological interactions
Port Phillip Bay
Ecosystem models
Ocean Productivity
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID DP0879365
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Online publication; Received 6 April 2009 and accepted 17 June 2009

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Mathematics and Physics
2010 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 81 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Fri, 12 Feb 2010, 22:59:29 EST by Hayley Ware on behalf of School of Biological Sciences