Molecular indicators of chronic seagrass stress: A new era in the management of seagrass ecosystems?

Macreadie, P.I., Schliep, M.T., Rasheed, M.A., Chartrand, K.M., and Ralph, P.J. (2014) Molecular indicators of chronic seagrass stress: A new era in the management of seagrass ecosystems? Ecological Indicators, 38. pp. 279-281.

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Abstract

[Extract] Orth et al. (2006)'s influential paper – 'A global crisis for seagrass ecosystems' – highlighted the critical need for a targeted global conservation effort to protect, monitor, and successfully manage seagrasses. Yet seagrasses continue to face rapid global decline (Waycott et al., 2009), demonstrating that we have failed to avert the crisis. Central to the problem is the lack of awareness (by compliance regulators, policy makers, and the public) of the value of seagrasses in terms of the ecosystem services they provide (e.g. fisheries habitat, carbon sequestration, nutrient cycling). However, this is not the only problem. Even if seagrasses achieved a similar status as their coral reef counterparts, we are still left with a major scientific challenge, which is: to successfully detect and respond to stressed seagrasses before they 'pass the point of no return', as current methods of seagrass monitoring – morphological and physiological – do not always provide sufficient early warning of a meadows demise or a sufficient timeframe for successful rehabilitation actions. This is where sub-lethal, molecular indicators are required; where a molecular parameter will change at the onset of stress and if conditions do not change, the organism will eventually die.

Item ID: 31477
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
ISSN: 1470-160X
Funders: Australian Research Council, CSIRO Coastal Carbon Cluster
Projects and Grants: ARC (LP110200454 and DE130101084)
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2014 00:15
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050206 Environmental Monitoring @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960503 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Coastal and Estuarine Environments @ 100%
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