Global Seabird Response to Forage Fish Depletion-One-Third for the Birds

Type Article
Date 2011-12
Language English
Author(s) Cury Philippe1, Boyd Ian L.2, Bonhommeau SylvainORCID3, Anker-Nilssen Tycho4, Crawford Robert J. M.5, Furness Robert W.6, Mills James A.7, Murphy Eugene J.8, Oesterblom Henrik9, Paleczny Michelle10, Piatt John F.11, Roux Jean-Paul12, 13, Shannon Lynne14, Sydeman William J.15
Affiliation(s) 1 : Inst Rech Dev, Ctr Rech Halieut Mediterraneenne & Trop, UMR EME 212, F-34203 Sete, France.
2 : Univ St Andrews, Scottish Oceans Inst, St Andrews KY16 8LB, Fife, Scotland.
3 : Ifremer, Ctr Rech Halieut Mediterraneenne & Trop, UMR EME 212, F-34203 Sete, France.
4 : Norwegian Inst Nat Res, NO-7485 Trondheim, Norway.
5 : Dept Environm Affairs, Branch Oceans & Coasts, ZA-8012 Cape Town, South Africa.
6 : Univ Glasgow, Coll Med Vet & Life Sci, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Lanark, Scotland.
7 : British Antarctic Survey, Cambridge CB3 0ET, England.
8 : Stockholm Univ, Stockholm Resilience Ctr, Balt Nest Inst, SE-10691 Stockholm, Sweden.
9 : Univ British Columbia, Fisheries Ctr, AERL, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada.
10 : US Geol Survey, Alaska Sci Ctr, Anchorage, AK 99508 USA.
11 : Luderitz Marine Res, Minist Fisheries & Marine Resources, Ecosyst Anal Sect, Luderitz, Namibia.
12 : Univ Cape Town, Dept Zool, Anim Demog Unit, ZA-7701 Cape Town, South Africa.
13 : Univ Cape Town, Marine Res Inst, ZA-7701 Cape Town, South Africa.
14 : Univ Cape Town, Dept Zool, ZA-7701 Cape Town, South Africa.
15 : Farallon Inst Adv Ecosyst Res, Petaluma, CA 94952 USA.
Source Science (0036-8075) (Amer Assoc Advancement Science), 2011-12 , Vol. 334 , N. 6063 , P. 1703-1706
DOI 10.1126/science.1212928
WOS© Times Cited 447
Abstract Determining the form of key predator-prey relationships is critical for understanding marine ecosystem dynamics. Using a comprehensive global database, we quantified the effect of fluctuations in food abundance on seabird breeding success. We identified a threshold in prey (fish and krill, termed "forage fish") abundance below which seabirds experience consistently reduced and more variable productivity. This response was common to all seven ecosystems and 14 bird species examined within the Atlantic, Pacific, and Southern Oceans. The threshold approximated one-third of the maximum prey biomass observed in long-term studies. This provides an indicator of the minimal forage fish biomass needed to sustain seabird productivity over the long term.
Full Text
File Pages Size Access
4 543 KB Access on demand
Author's final draft 67 1020 KB Open access
Top of the page

How to cite 

Cury Philippe, Boyd Ian L., Bonhommeau Sylvain, Anker-Nilssen Tycho, Crawford Robert J. M., Furness Robert W., Mills James A., Murphy Eugene J., Oesterblom Henrik, Paleczny Michelle, Piatt John F., Roux Jean-Paul, Shannon Lynne, Sydeman William J. (2011). Global Seabird Response to Forage Fish Depletion-One-Third for the Birds. Science, 334(6063), 1703-1706. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :