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Assessing National Biodiversity Trends for Rocky and Coral Reefs through the Integration of Citizen Science and Scientific Monitoring Programs

Assessing National Biodiversity Trends for Rocky and Coral Reefs through the Integration of Citizen Science and Scientific Monitoring Programs
Assessing National Biodiversity Trends for Rocky and Coral Reefs through the Integration of Citizen Science and Scientific Monitoring Programs
Reporting progress against targets for international biodiversity agreements is hindered by a shortage of suitable biodiversity data. We describe a cost-effective system involving Reef Life Survey citizen scientists in the systematic collection of quantitative data covering multiple phyla that can underpin numerous marine biodiversity indicators at high spatial and temporal resolution. We then summarize the findings of a continental- and decadal-scale State of the Environment assessment for rocky and coral reefs based on indicators of ecosystem state relating to fishing, ocean warming, and invasive species and describing the distribution of threatened species. Fishing impacts are widespread, whereas substantial warming-related change affected some regions between 2005 and 2015. Invasive species are concentrated near harbors in southeastern Australia, and the threatened-species index is highest for the Great Australian Bight and Tasman Sea. Our approach can be applied globally to improve reporting against biodiversity targets and enhance public and policymakers’ understanding of marine biodiversity trends.
0006-3568
134-146
Stuart-smith, Rick D.
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Edgar, Graham J.
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Barrett, Neville S.
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Bates, Amanda E.
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Baker, Susan C.
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Bax, Nicholas J.
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Becerro, Mikel A.
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Berkhout, Just
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Blanchard, Julia L.
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Brock, Daniel J.
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Clark, Graeme F.
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Cooper, Antonia T.
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Davis, Tom R.
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Day, Paul B.
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Holmes, Thomas H.
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Howe, Steffan A.
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Jordan, Alan
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Kininmonth, Stuart
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Knott, Nathan A.
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Lefcheck, Jonathan S.
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Ling, Scott D.
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Parr, Amanda
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Strain, Elisabeth
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Sweatman, Hugh
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Thomson, Russell
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Stuart-smith, Rick D.
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Edgar, Graham J.
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Barrett, Neville S.
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Bates, Amanda E.
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Baker, Susan C.
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Bax, Nicholas J.
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Becerro, Mikel A.
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Berkhout, Just
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Blanchard, Julia L.
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Brock, Daniel J.
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Clark, Graeme F.
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Cooper, Antonia T.
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Davis, Tom R.
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Day, Paul B.
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Duffy, J. Emmett
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Holmes, Thomas H.
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Howe, Steffan A.
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Jordan, Alan
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Kininmonth, Stuart
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Knott, Nathan A.
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Lefcheck, Jonathan S.
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Ling, Scott D.
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Parr, Amanda
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Strain, Elisabeth
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Sweatman, Hugh
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Thomson, Russell
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Stuart-smith, Rick D., Edgar, Graham J., Barrett, Neville S., Bates, Amanda E., Baker, Susan C., Bax, Nicholas J., Becerro, Mikel A., Berkhout, Just, Blanchard, Julia L., Brock, Daniel J., Clark, Graeme F., Cooper, Antonia T., Davis, Tom R., Day, Paul B., Duffy, J. Emmett, Holmes, Thomas H., Howe, Steffan A., Jordan, Alan, Kininmonth, Stuart, Knott, Nathan A., Lefcheck, Jonathan S., Ling, Scott D., Parr, Amanda, Strain, Elisabeth, Sweatman, Hugh and Thomson, Russell (2017) Assessing National Biodiversity Trends for Rocky and Coral Reefs through the Integration of Citizen Science and Scientific Monitoring Programs. BioScience, 67 (2), 134-146. (doi:10.1093/biosci/biw180).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Reporting progress against targets for international biodiversity agreements is hindered by a shortage of suitable biodiversity data. We describe a cost-effective system involving Reef Life Survey citizen scientists in the systematic collection of quantitative data covering multiple phyla that can underpin numerous marine biodiversity indicators at high spatial and temporal resolution. We then summarize the findings of a continental- and decadal-scale State of the Environment assessment for rocky and coral reefs based on indicators of ecosystem state relating to fishing, ocean warming, and invasive species and describing the distribution of threatened species. Fishing impacts are widespread, whereas substantial warming-related change affected some regions between 2005 and 2015. Invasive species are concentrated near harbors in southeastern Australia, and the threatened-species index is highest for the Great Australian Bight and Tasman Sea. Our approach can be applied globally to improve reporting against biodiversity targets and enhance public and policymakers’ understanding of marine biodiversity trends.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 1 January 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 1 February 2017
Published date: 1 February 2017

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 418031
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/418031
ISSN: 0006-3568
PURE UUID: 1742fd55-91d8-413a-8b46-5cc57a9fe768

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Date deposited: 21 Feb 2018 17:30
Last modified: 27 Apr 2022 08:53

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Contributors

Author: Rick D. Stuart-smith
Author: Graham J. Edgar
Author: Neville S. Barrett
Author: Amanda E. Bates
Author: Susan C. Baker
Author: Nicholas J. Bax
Author: Mikel A. Becerro
Author: Just Berkhout
Author: Julia L. Blanchard
Author: Daniel J. Brock
Author: Graeme F. Clark
Author: Antonia T. Cooper
Author: Tom R. Davis
Author: Paul B. Day
Author: J. Emmett Duffy
Author: Thomas H. Holmes
Author: Steffan A. Howe
Author: Alan Jordan
Author: Stuart Kininmonth
Author: Nathan A. Knott
Author: Jonathan S. Lefcheck
Author: Scott D. Ling
Author: Amanda Parr
Author: Elisabeth Strain
Author: Hugh Sweatman
Author: Russell Thomson

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