Modeling Population and Ecosystem Response to Sublethal Toxicant Exposure
CALIFORNIA UNIV SANTA BARBARA DEPT OF ECOLOGY EVOLUTION AND MARINE BIOLOGY
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The ecological effects of environmental stress occur within complex communities and ecosystems. Prior to the current award, the PIs formulated and tested general dynamic energy budget models characterizing the response of individual organisms to toxicants, and developed methodology for using these models to predict population dynamics. They also developed new theory describing the trophic dynamics of open systems. They now propose to use these advances as the basis of research to test the predictive power and limitations of an individual-based approach to understanding the impact of pollutants on the dynamics of marine communities and ecosystems with multiple trophic levels. The research has three main components a Models of the acclimation of individual organisms to changes in their environment. b Development of simple models of marine organisms in open populations competing for a single resource in a polluted environment. Tests against data on estuarine fish experiencing environmental gradients. c Development of simple ecosystem models with primary producers, competing herbivores and explicit incorporation of microbial dynamics. Tests of the models using experimental data on polluted benthic microcosms obtained by Dr. Kevin Carman Louisiana State University. Use of the models to interpret field data on infauna near point sources of pollution.
- Biological Oceanography
- Environmental Health and Safety