Environmental controls on spatial patterns in the long-term persistence of giant kelp in central California

Young, Mary, Cavanaugh, Kyle, Bell, Tom, Raimondi, Pete, Edwards, Christopher A., Drake, Patrick T., Erikson, Li and Storlazzi, Curt 2016, Environmental controls on spatial patterns in the long-term persistence of giant kelp in central California, Ecological monographs, vol. 86, no. 1, pp. 45-60, doi: 10.1890/15-0267.1.

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Title Environmental controls on spatial patterns in the long-term persistence of giant kelp in central California
Author(s) Young, MaryORCID iD for Young, Mary orcid.org/0000-0001-7426-2343
Cavanaugh, Kyle
Bell, Tom
Raimondi, Pete
Edwards, Christopher A.
Drake, Patrick T.
Erikson, Li
Storlazzi, Curt
Journal name Ecological monographs
Volume number 86
Issue number 1
Start page 45
End page 60
Total pages 16
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication Hoboken, N.J.
Publication date 2016-02
ISSN 0012-9615
Keyword(s) foundation species
generalized linear mixed effects models
giant kelp
Macrocystis pyrifera
population connectivity
spatial persistence
wave climate
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Environmental Sciences & Ecology
Summary As marine management measures increasingly protect static areas of the oceans, it is important to make sure protected areas capture and protect persistent populations. Rocky reefs in many temperate areas worldwide serve as habitat for canopy-forming macroalgae and these structure-forming species of kelps (order Laminariales) often serve as important habitat for a great diversity of species. Macrocystis pyrifera is the most common canopy-forming kelp species found along the coast of California, but the distribution and abundance of M. pyrifera varies in space and time. The purpose of this study is to determine what environmental parameters are correlated with and their relative contribution to the spatial and temporal persistence of M. pyrifera along the central coast of California and how well those environmental parameters can be used to predict areas where this species is more likely to persist. Nine environmental variables considered in this study included depth of the seafloor, structure of the rocky reef, proportion of rocky reef, size of kelp patch, biomass of kelp within a patch, distance from the edge of a kelp patch, sea surface temperature, wave orbital velocities, and population connectivity of individual kelp patches. Using a generalized linear mixed effects model (GLMM), the persistence of M. pyrifera was significantly associated with seven of the nine variables considered: depth, complexity of the rocky reef, proportion of rock, patch biomass, distance from the edge of a patch, population connectivity, and wave orbital velocities. These seven environmental variables were then used to predict the persistence of kelp across the central coast, and these predictions were compared to a reserved dataset of M. pyrifera persistence, which was not used in the creation of the GLMM. The environmental variables were shown to accurately predict the persistence of M. pyrifera within the central coast of California (r = 0.71, P < 0.001). Because persistence of giant kelp is important to the community structure of kelp forests, understanding those factors that support persistent populations of M. pyrifera will enable more effective management of these ecosystems.
Language eng
DOI 10.1890/15-0267.1
Field of Research 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology)
060701 Phycology (incl Marine Grasses)
0406 Physical Geography And Environmental Geoscience
0501 Ecological Applications
0602 Ecology
Socio Economic Objective 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Ecological Society of America
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30085576

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