New study provides information on the role of forage fish in the California Current Ecosystem

Farallon Institute scientists Amber Szoboszlai, Julie Thayer, and William Sydeman co-authored a paper for a study that examined the role of forage fish in the California Current Ecosystem, and the results of this study were published in the journal Ecological Modelling.  In this research, the authors developed and used a food web model to analyze which species are predators of forage fish (such as sardine and herring) and how much the predators' diets are composed of forage fish species.  Results of this study show that many predator species consume multiple forage fish species (rather than focusing on just one type), which suggests that management on the ecosystem level rather than a species-specific level is likely to be a more successful approach to conservation.  Likewise, this information suggests that declines in forage fish populations can have far-reaching effects in marine food webs.  

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