OceanObs09

Published in the
Proceedings of OceanObs'09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society

COMMUNITY WHITE PAPER10.5270/OceanObs09.cwp.52

Benthic Biology Time-Series in the Deep Sea: Indicators of Change

K.E. Larkin(1), H A Ruhl(1), P. Bagley(2), A. Benn(1), B.J. Bett(1), D.S.M. Billett(1), A. Boetius(3), P. Chevaldonné(4), A Colaço(5), A. Copley(1), R. Danovaro(6), E. Escobar-Briones(7), A. Glover(8), A.J. Gooday(1), J.A. Hughes(1), V. Kalogeropoulou(9), B.A. Kelly-Gerreyn(1), H Kitazato(10), M. Klages(11), N Lampadariou(12), C Lejeusne(4), T Perez(4), I.G. Priede(13), A. Rogers(14), P.M. Sarradin(15), J. Sarrazin(16), P.M. Soltwedel(11), E.H. Soto(17), S. Thatje(1), A. Tselepides(18), P.A. Tyler(1), S. van den Hove(19), A Vanreusel(20), F. Wenzhöfer(21)

pdf Download this paper »

The responsiveness of benthic biological communities to climatic drivers and shifts makes them powerful indicators of biogeochemical and other environmental change in the oceans. In addition, benthic ecosystems have an economic value and are considered a vital marine resource. However deep-sea faunal dynamics and ecosystem functioning is not well defined. This has placed a higher priority in recent years on developing and sustaining long-term, time-series studies of benthic biodiversity, rate processes, and ecosystem change in deep-sea and extreme habitats. A few key long-term time-series sites exist across the global Ocean. Many of these sites are reviewed in this paper. However, much of the existing research is uncoordinated and the data collected are not integrated or standardized. This currently limits the use of these valuable datasets, which could be used for benthic modeling, global model validation and other societal benefits related to more effective and environmentally sustainable governance of human activities in the deep ocean. Furthermore, the time scales that can be studied within existing research frameworks are not currently sufficient to adequately address internationally-identified science priorities. These include assessing regional and global biodiversity, ecosystem functioning and the links between climate, terrestrial and marine ecosystems. In addition, the contribution of deep-sea ecosystems to global biogeochemical cycles and the potential alteration to ecosystem value and services due to anthropogenic activities is largely unknown. In order to maximize the societal benefit, biological time-series, in particular deep-sea sites, urgently require more coordination, integration, sustained funding and infrastructure. This is necessary to unify research methodologies, create synergies in the use of deep-sea technology, develop benthic models, and to stimulate more collaboration between programmes. National and international research organizations may provide a suitable framework within which further advances can be achieved. Only then will we better understand the goods and services provided by deep-sea ecosystems and the potential for environmentally sustainable exploitation of the deep ocean.

1National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton, Waterfront Campus, European Way, Southampton SO14 3ZH, United Kingdom
2University of Aberdeen, Oceanlab, Newburgh, Aberdeenshire, AB41 6AA, (U.K.),
3Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Celsiusstr. 1, 28359 Bremen (Germany),
4Centre d'Océanologie de Marseille, Station Marine d'Endoume, Rue de la Batterie des Lions - 13007 Marseille France
5Department of Oceanography and Fisheries, Campus of Horta, Cais de Santa Cruz, 9901-862 Horta, Açores (Portugal)
6Department of Marine Science, Polytechnic University of Marche, Via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona (Italy),
7Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Instituto de Ciencias del Mar y Limnologia, Unidad Academica Ecologia Marina, Laboratorio Biodiversidad y Macroecologia, A.P. 70-305 Ciudad Universitaria, 04510 Mèxico, D.F. (Mèxico)
8Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD, (U.K.),
9Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), Institute of Oceanography, PO Box 2214, 71003 Heraklion, Crete, (Greece)
10Institute of Biogeosciences, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, 2-15 Natsushima-cho, Yokosuka 237-0061, (Japan)
11Alfred Wegener Institute, Am Handelshafen 12, D-27570 Bremerhaven, (Germany)
12Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), Institute of Oceanography, PO Box 2214, 71003 Heraklion, Crete,, (Greece)
13University of Aberdeen, Oceanlab, Newburgh, Aberdeenshire, AB41 6AA, U.K.
14Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4RY U.K.
15IFREMER (French Institute for Exploitation of the Sea/Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer) DEEP/LEP (Département Études des Écosystèmes Profonds/Laboratoire Environnement Profond), Centre de Brest, BP 70, 29280 Plouzané, France
16IFREMER (French Institute for Exploitation of the Sea/Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer) DEEP/LEP (Département Etudes des Ecosystèmes Profonds/Laboratoire Environnement Profond), Centre de Brest, BP 70, 29280 Plouzané, France
17Facultad de Ciencias del Mar y de Recursos Naturales, Universidad de Valparaíso, Casilla 5080 Reñaca, Viña del Mar, (Chile)
18Univ. of Piraeus, Dept. of Maritime Studies, Piraeus 185 32, (Greece)
19MEDIAN SCP, Passeig Pintor Romero, 8 08197 Valldoreix, (Spain)
20Ghent University, Marine Biology Research group, Sterre Campus, Krijgslaan 281 (S8), B-9000 Ghent, (Belgium)
21Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Celsiusstr. 1, 28359 Bremen (Germany)

Correspondence should be addressed to E-mail: kel1@noc.soton.ac.uk

This paper shall be cited as:

Larkin, K. & Co-Authors (2010). "Benthic Biology Time-Series in the Deep Sea: Indicators of Change " in Proceedings of OceanObs’09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society (Vol. 2), Venice, Italy, 21-25 September 2009, Hall, J., Harrison, D.E. & Stammer, D., Eds., ESA Publication WPP-306, doi:10.5270/OceanObs09.cwp.52

Rights to reproduction of individual articles are held by the authors. The source of the article (these proceedings) shall be cited.

 Contact: info .at. oceanobs09.net