This book provides a unique perspective on the destruction - both natural and human-caused - of coral reef ecosystems. Reconstructing the ecological history of coral reefs, the authors evaluate whether recent dramatic changes are novel events or part of a long-term trend or cycle. The text combines principles of geophysics, paleontology, and marine sciences with real-time observation, examining the interacting causes of change: hurricane damage, predators, disease, rising sea-level, nutrient loading, global warming and ocean acidification. Predictions about the future of coral reefs inspire strategies for restoration and management of ecosystems. Useful for students and professionals in ecology and marine biology, including environmental managers.
About the Author
Dr. Richard B. Aronson is Senior Marine Scientist at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, Dauphin Island, Alabama and Professor of Marine Sciences at the University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama, USA.
Table of Contents
Dedication Preface Part I Coral Reefs in Context: The Changing Fate of Coral Reefs: Lessons from the Deep Past.- Part II Detecting Critical Events: Taphonomy: Detecting Critical Events in Fossil Reef-Coral Assemblages.- Species Turnover on Coral Reefs: A Probabilistic Approach.- Past Seastar Outbreaks Inferred from Scar Patterns on Reef-Coral Heads.- Influence of Terrigenous Runoff on Offshore Reefs: An Example from the Flower Garden Banks, Gulf of Mexico.- Fidelity of Annual Growth in Montastraea faveolata and the Recentness of Coral Bleaching in Florida.- Part III Patterns of Reef Development and Their Implications: Demise, Regeneration, and Survival of Some Western Atlantic Reefs During the Holocene Transgression.- Broad-Scale Patterns in Pleisene Coral Reef Communities: Implications for Ecology and Management.- Ecological Shifts Along the Florida Reef Tract: The Past is the Key to the Future.- Part IV Coral Reefs and Global Change: Extreme Climatic Events and Coral Reefs: How Much Short-Term Threat from Global Change?- Responses of Coral Reefs to El Niño-Southern Oscillation Sea-Warming Events.- Constraints on Predicting Coral Reef Response to Global Change.