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The trophodynamics of marine top predators: Current knowledge, recent advances and challenges


Young, JW and Hunt, BPV and Cook, TR and Llopiz, JK and Hazen, EL and Pethybridge, HR and Ceccarelli, D and Lorrain, A and Olson, RJ and Allain, V and Menkes, C and Patterson, T and Nicol, S and Lehodey, P and Kloser, RJ and Arrizabalaga, H and Choy, CA, The trophodynamics of marine top predators: Current knowledge, recent advances and challenges, Deep-Sea Research. Part 2: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 113 pp. 170-187. ISSN 0967-0645 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2014.05.015


We review present understanding of the spatial and temporal diet variability (trophodynamics) of a range of pelagic marine top predators, at both early and adult life history stages. We begin with a review of methodologies used to advance our understanding of the trophodynamics of marine top predators, particularly in relation to climate change. We then explore how these developments are informing our understanding of the major trophic groups in food webs leading to, and including, marine top predators. We examine through specific examples how the impacts of ocean warming may affect pelagic food web relationships from both top-down and bottom-up perspectives. We examine the potential, in the absence of long-term data sets, of using large-scale spatial studies to examine how potential changes in biological oceanography could impact the biomass and composition of prey species, particularly the role of phytoplankton size spectra. We focus on examples from regions where biotic change with respect to climate change is likely. In particular, we detail the effects of climate change on oceanographic and bathymetric "hotspots" and provide the example involving seabirds in the Benguela Current system. We end by urging the development of international collaborations and databases to facilitate comprehensive ocean-scale understanding of climate impacts on marine top predators.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:top predators, trophodynamics, micronekton, bottom-up processes, hotspots, climate change
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Pethybridge, HR (Miss Heidi Pethybridge)
UTAS Author:Patterson, T (Dr Toby Patterson)
UTAS Author:Kloser, RJ (Dr Rudy Kloser)
ID Code:118581
Year Published:2015
Web of Science® Times Cited:84
Deposited By:Directorate
Deposited On:2017-07-14
Last Modified:2017-11-02

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