Transient demographic approaches can drastically expand the toolbox of coral reef science
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Coral communities are threatened by an increasing plethora of abiotic and biotic disturbances. Preventing the ensuing loss of coral coverage and diversity calls for a mechanistic understanding of resilience across coral species and populations that is currently lacking in coral reef science. Assessments into the dynamics of coral populations typically focus on their long-term (i.e. asymptotic) characteristics, tacitly assuming stable environments in which populations can attain their long-term characteristics. Instead, we argue that greater focus is needed on investigating the transient (i.e. short-term) dynamics of coral populations to describe and predict their characteristics and trajectories within unstable environments. Applying transient demographic approaches to evaluating and forecasting the responses of coral populations to disturbance holds promise for expediting our capacity to predict and manage the resilience of coral populations, species, and communities.
Cant , J , Salguero-Gómez , R & Beger , M 2022 , ' Transient demographic approaches can drastically expand the toolbox of coral reef science ' , Coral Reefs . https://doi.org/10.1007/s00338-022-02250-x
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DescriptionThis work was supported by a NERC DTP scholarship to JC and a NERC Independent Research Fellowship (NE/M018458/1) to RS-G.
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