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Recordings of previous webinars are available on our webinar archive page.
Friday 2 October 2020, 13:00 – 14:30 UK time: Modelling benthic functional diversity at the ecosystem scale using hierarchical modelling of species communities (WP2 webinar series)
Speakers: Ellen Kenchington and Javier Murillo-Perez, Fisheries and Oceans, Canada
Title: Modelling benthic functional diversity at the ecosystem scale using hierarchical modelling of species communities
Synopsis: Benthic invertebrates play important roles in marine ecosystems. They represent a key link between benthic and pelagic ecosystems facilitating nutrient cycling, and through their physical structure, some locally enhance habitat complexity increasing biodiversity, and provide nursery areas for other species. Many are an important food source for fish and marine mammals and can be active predators themselves. Our research has focused on characterizing and mapping the functional diversity of selected ecological functions of marine epibenthic invertebrate communities at the ecosystem scale and evaluating the relative contributions of environmental filtering, including bottom-contact fishing, phylogenetic relationships and competitive interactions to benthic community assembly. Through the use of Hierarchical Modelling of Species Communities (HMSC) to fit a joint species distribution model to the benthic data, we have explored seven community response traits to the environment applied to 105 epibenthic species and evaluated the influence of such traits on the community assembly processes. Assumed bioturbation, nutrient cycling and habitat provision functions, linked to individual or a combination of biological traits, were also mapped using random forest modelling. We quantified functional diversity (FD), and calculated functional richness (FRic), and functional dispersion (FDis), providing a complementary facet of functional diversity. In our presentation we will elaborate on our selection of traits to assess (E. Kenchington) and then provide an introduction to HMSC with details of how to use the various R packages involved (data required, scripts used, outputs created), using our published work as an example (J. Murillo). Lastly we will provide a brief summary of the HMSC work we are doing in iATLANTIC in Case Study Area 4 in support of WP2.
Wednesday 7 October 2020, 15:00 – 16:00 UK time: Follow the Fellows webinar
Speaker: Danielle S.W. de Jonge, Heriot-Watt University
Title: Food-web models: abyssal ecosystem functioning and stability under climate change projections
Synopsis: Trophic interactions are important in shaping communities, especially in the deep sea where food availability is limited. Food-web models incorporate trophic interactions into a community network which can be assessed for ecosystem functioning (like carbon cycling) and ecosystem stability (i.e. the response of the network to a disturbance). I am constructing linear inverse food-web models of abyssal benthic systems in the Atlantic under eutrophic and oligotrophic conditions to assess their functioning and stability currently, and under future climate scenarios. I will present the first results, my ideas for the project, and I may request some input from the audience!
Access: Open to all – please contact iAtlantic project office to request joining details