Parasites are ubiquitous. They feed on virtually every animal and even on each other. Yet, for all the parasites' collective contributions to biomass and biodiversity, conventional food webs don't account for the presence of these tiny and numerous consumers. A recent study may alter our picture of who-eats-who.
"If you are not including parasites in food webs, you aren't getting the whole picture," said Kevin Lafferty, a marine ecologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, and adjunct professor in the UCSB Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology (EEMB). "They are consumers like predators, but they are less visible and easy to forget."
The World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Oceans endorses the Ocean Health Index (OHI) an NCEAS partner, to help guide how the world's oceans are managed. The OHI rates the world's ocean health on a scale of 0 - 100 based on measures of ecological health and human benefits and currently gives global ocean health a score of 60.
NCEAS congratulates two of its Postdoctoral alumni, Marissa L. Baskett and Duncan N.L. Menge for being named the Ecological Society of America’s (ESA) 2013 Early Career Fellows. The ESA fellows program recognizes the many ways in which its members contribute to ecological research and discovery, communication, education and pedagogy, and to management and policy. A complete list of ESA 2013 Fellows and Early Career Fellows is in their announcement.
Linking the condition of an ecosystem to the benefits that people derive from that system is a fundamental challenge for scientists and managers, and one that must be met in order to implement ecosystem based management. This paper presents a pragmatic approach to quantifying the benefits people gain from marine systems.
NCEAS director of informatics research and development, Matthew B. Jones, has assembled an all-star team to conduct a hands-on EcoInformatics workshop for early career scientists at the upcoming annual conference of the Ecological Society of America (ESA) in Minneapolis, MN on Sunday, August 4, 2013.
Meta-analysis is a powerful statistical methodology for synthesizing research evidence across independent studies. Just published, the Handbook of Meta-analysis in Ecology and Evolution is the first comprehensive handbook of meta-analysis written specifically for ecologists and evolutionary biologists, and it provides an invaluable introduction for beginners as well as an up-to-date guide for experienced meta-analysts. This handbook was developed as part of a NCEAS working group, Meta-analysis in Ecology: Lessons, Challenges and Future working group.
Triple–bottom-line outcomes from resource management and conservation, where conservation goals and equity in social outcomes are maximized while overall costs are minimized, remain a highly sought-after ideal. This study provides an important foundation for moving the science and practice of conservation planning—and broader spatial planning in general—toward more consistently achieving efficient, equitable, and effective outcomes.
The 2013 DataONE Summer Internship Program is now open for applications. The Data Observation Network for Earth (DataONE) is a virtual organization dedicated to providing open, persistent, robust, and secure access to biodiversity and environmental data, supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation. UCSB is a DataONE partner.
The National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) is pleased to invite applications from early-career researchers for a 3-week intensive training workshop in ecological analysis and synthesis, to take place at NCEAS in Santa Barbara CA June 19-July 10, 2013.
Happy New Year from Santa Barbara! As we proceed into 2013, we would like to take a moment to share with you some of NCEAS' 2012 highlights.
California exhibits one of the richest floras on the planet, with more than 5,500 native plant species, approximately 40% of which are endemic. This study, published in Evolution, shows that California’s current biodiversity primarily results from low extinction rates, as opposed to elevated specialization or immigration rates, as previously believed.