Social–environmental drivers inform strategic management of coral reefs in the Anthropocene

Emily Darling 1 Tim Mcclanahan 2 Joseph Maina Georgina Gurney Nicholas Graham 3 Fraser Januchowski-Hartley 4 Joshua Cinner 5 Camilo Mora Christina Hicks Eva Maire 4 Marji Puotinen 6 William Skirving Mehdi Adjeroud 7 Gabby Ahmadia 8 Rohan Arthur Andrew Bauman Maria Beger Michael Berumen Lionel Bigot Jessica Bouwmeester 9 Ambroise Brenier 10 Tom Bridge Eric Brown 11 Stuart Campbell 12 Sara Cannon Bruce Cauvin 13 Chaolun Allen Chen Joachim Claudet 14 Vianney Denis 15 Simon Donner Estradivari Estradivari Nur Fadli David Feary 16 Douglas Fenner Helen Fox Erik Franklin Alan Friedlander James Gilmour Claire Goiran 17 James Guest Jean-Paul Hobbs Andrew Hoey Peter Houk 18 Steven Johnson 19 Stacy Jupiter Mohsen Kayal 20 Chao-Yang Kuo Joleah Lamb 21 Michelle Lee 22 Jeffrey Low Nyawira Muthiga 23 Efin Muttaqin 24 Yashika Nand Kirsty Nash Osamu Nedlic John Pandolfi Shinta Pardede Vardhan Patankar Lucie Penin 14 Lauriane Ribas-Deulofeu Zoe Richards T. Edward Roberts Ku’ulei Rodgers Che Din Mohd Safuan Enric Sala 25 George Shedrawi Tsai Min Sin Patrick Smallhorn-West Jennifer Smith Brigitte Sommer Peter Steinberg Makamas Sutthacheep Chun Hong James Tan Gareth Williams 26 Shaun Wilson Thamasak Yeemin John Bruno Marie-Josée Fortin 27 Martin Krkosek David Mouillot 28
Abstract : Without drastic efforts to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate globalized stressors, tropical coral reefs are in jeopardy. Strategic conservation and management requires identification of the environmental and socioeconomic factors driving the persistence of scleractinian coral assemblages—the foundation species of coral reef ecosystems. Here, we compiled coral abundance data from 2,584 Indo-Pacific reefs to evaluate the influence of 21 climate, social and environmental drivers on the ecology of reef coral assemblages. Higher abundances of framework-building corals were typically associated with: weaker thermal disturbances and longer intervals for potential recovery; slower human population growth; reduced access by human settlements and markets; and less nearby agriculture. We therefore propose a framework of three management strategies (protect, recover or transform) by considering: (1) if reefs were above or below a proposed threshold of >10% cover of the coral taxa important for structural complexity and carbonate production; and (2) reef exposure to severe thermal stress during the 2014–2017 global coral bleaching event. Our findings can guide urgent management efforts for coral reefs, by identifying key threats across multiple scales and strategic policy priorities that might sustain a network of functioning reefs in the Indo-Pacific to avoid ecosystem collapse.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 2:32:19 PM
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Emily Darling, Tim Mcclanahan, Joseph Maina, Georgina Gurney, Nicholas Graham, et al.. Social–environmental drivers inform strategic management of coral reefs in the Anthropocene. Nature Ecology & Evolution, Nature, 2019, 3 (9), pp.1341-1350. ⟨10.1038/s41559-019-0953-8⟩. ⟨hal-02309662⟩

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