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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 413:185-187 (2010)  -  DOI:

Ecological thresholds in marine communities: theory, experiments and management

Richard W. Osman1, Pablo Munguia2, Roman N. Zajac3

1Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, 647 Contees Wharf Road, Edgewater, Maryland 21037-0028, USA
2Marine Science Institute, The University of Texas at Austin, 750 Channel View Dr., Port Aransas, Texas 78373, USA
3Department of Biology and Environmental Science, University of New Haven, West Haven, Connecticut 06516, USA

ABSTRACT: There is increasing interest in the resilience of marine and estuarine populations, communities and ecosystems, and their rapid change when stresses reach some threshold or tipping point. Current research on thresholds is altering  our understanding of these systems, the processes by which they change, and our approach to their management and restoration. In this Theme Section conceptual, modeling, and empirical studies explore threshold dynamics in marine coastal systems in a variety of habitats and across different scales. The contributions provide a window on present research, highlight some of the issues being debated, and point to some of the potential applications of threshold dynamics to resource management issues.

KEY WORDS: Thresholds · Resilience · Multiple stable states · Tipping points · Management

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Cite this article as: Osman RW, Munguia P, Zajac RN (2010) Ecological thresholds in marine communities: theory, experiments and management. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 413:185-187.

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