Farallon Institute News
Predator-habitat relationships are described by spatio-temporal dynamics of ocean conditions and forage taxa
October 24, 2014
An article describing new research led by Jarrod Santora was recently published in the journal Ecological Applications. In this study, Santora et al. show that abundance of lower trophic level prey species such as krill and anchovy covary with oceanic conditions on the continental shelf. In turn, variability in seabird breeding success indicates the importance and availability of multiple forage taxa within shelf and oceanic regions. Demographic responses (such as seabird breeding success) related to prey availability revealed spatially variable associations, which are indicative of the dynamic nature of "predator-habitat" relationships.
Mesopelagic fishes in the California Current
October 24, 2014
Pete Davison, Farallon Institute post-doctoral scientist, and co-authors have research that was featured in the September issue of the IMBER Update Newsletter. The article explores the ecological importance of poorly-studied mesopelagic fish and how climate change is impacting them, and outlines the need and utility of broad-scale, long-term monitoring programs such as the CalCOFI program.
Rising variability in winter maritime climate
September 23, 2014
Farallon Institute collaborator Bryan A. Black and in-house scientists published new results in the journal Science. In this paper, marine and terrestrial biological data were combined to reconstruct changes in winter maritime climate across six centuries. The team developed a multivariate marine climate index, which represented coastal upwelling as well as local precipitation in adjacent terrestrial ecosystems, and linked variation in blue oak (Quercus douglasii) growth with several marine biological variables (copepod abundance, seabird productivity and timing of breeding, and rockfish growth). Then, the team used the oak tree ring data set to hindcast winter climate changes over the past 576 years. This exciting research illustrates a remarkable degree of connectivity across the coastal interface and supports an integrative approach to coastal zone management. The study shows that winter climate variability is increasing, but remains within the bounds seen over the past 600 years.
New OceanSpaces blog features Farallon Institute research
September 16, 2014
Ocean upwelling becoming more intense with climate change, new Farallon Institute research reveals
July 4, 2014
An international team of scientists, led by Farallon Institute President Dr. Bill Sydeman, has shown that winds that cause coastal upwelling off the west coasts of North and South America and southern Africa have increased over the past 60 years, indicating a global pattern of change. The study was published in the journal Science; additional information can be found in the press release and on the Farallon Institute Pelican Brief blog.
An additional article about this research can be found in the Los Angeles Times.
FI Scientist Pete Davison appears on KCRW program To the Point
July 2, 2014
Pete Davison appeared on KCRW's July 2nd episode of To the Point to discuss the presence of microplastics in the ocean. Pete explains the expectations and results of a recent study that found less plastic in the ocean than was expected and possible reasons why those plastics weren't detected. He also discusses the disintegration of plastics into small fragments, the consumption of plastic particles by animals, and toxicity of plastics to organisms.
New Facebook page and the Pelican Brief blog
July 17, 2013
Like us on Facebook to receive updates on our latest activities, including photos and links to our newly-created blog. The goal of our Facebook page is to create a network of supporters, both personal and professional, and to broadcast our message on a current and accessible platform.
The Pelican Brief is a blog designed for general audiences (managers, policy-makers, and informed members of the public) where we give summaries (briefs) of recent research papers involving Farallon Institute researchers. The name refers to the iconic California Brown Pelican, a once-endangered species in the California Current marine ecosystem which has recovered from chemical contamination of its primary food sources. The mission of Pelican Brief is to facilitate communication of scientific research to general audiences and in doing so provide a bridge to decision-makers and other interested parties.