Blake Stoner-Osborne Rose Hills
Comparison of conditions supporting coral reef structure in islands throughout the Pacific
Global change occurs at unprecedented rates within the Anthropocene and the drastic changes to coral reef ecosystems around the globe are unparalleled. Long-term ecological monitoring datasets from coral reefs in the Carribean and Indo-Pacific regions contain key information for assessing modern changes to tropical reef ecosystems. Abundant data on oceanographic conditions and organismal density hold the key to examining relationships between the biotic and abiotic factors that have changed coral reef community composition in the recent past. This project will use long-term ecological monitoring datasets from tropical islands in the Indo-Pacific and the Caribbean to investigate the impacts of changing water temperature, nutrient availability, and geomorphology on organismal community assemblages. These oceanographic and biological relationships have the potential to reveal key impacts of anthropogenic activity on these extremely productive, yet rather fragile ecosystems that support such a large percentage of marine life. This project hopes to investigate the effects of changing environmental conditions and human activity such as overfishing, pollution, and habitat destruction on coral reef community composition.