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Global patterns in marine predatory fish


van Denderen, PD and Lindegren, M and MacKenzie, BR and Watson, RA and Andersen, KH, Global patterns in marine predatory fish, Nature Ecology and Evolution, 2, (1) pp. 65-70. ISSN 2397-334X (2018) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2017 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. Post-prints are subject to Springer Nature re-use terms

DOI: doi:10.1038/s41559-017-0388-z


Large teleost (bony) fish are a dominant group of predators in the oceans and constitute a major source of food and livelihood for humans. These species differ markedly in morphology and feeding habits across oceanic regions; large pelagic species such as tunas and billfish typically occur in the tropics, whereas demersal species of gadoids and flatfish dominate boreal and temperate regions. Despite their importance for fisheries and the structuring of marine ecosystems, the underlying factors determining the global distribution and productivity of these two groups of teleost predators are poorly known. Here, we show how latitudinal differences in predatory fish can essentially be explained by the inflow of energy at the base of the pelagic and benthic food chain. A low productive benthic energy pathway favours large pelagic species, whereas equal productivities support large demersal generalists that outcompete the pelagic specialists. Our findings demonstrate the vulnerability of large teleost predators to ecosystem-wide changes in energy flows and hence provide key insight to predict the responses of these important marine resources under global change.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:pelagic, global, marine, energy flow, trophic, food web, climate change
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Aquaculture and fisheries stock assessment
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Adaptation to climate change
Objective Field:Social impacts of climate change and variability
UTAS Author:Watson, RA (Professor Reginald Watson)
ID Code:122796
Year Published:2018
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP140101377)
Web of Science® Times Cited:35
Deposited By:Fisheries and Aquaculture
Deposited On:2017-11-29
Last Modified:2019-02-21
Downloads:24 View Download Statistics

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