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Temporal clustering of tropical cyclones on the Great Barrier Reef and its ecological importance

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dc.contributor Australian Institute Of Marine Science
dc.contributor University Of Siena
dc.contributor Sch Biol Sci
dc.contributor University Of Queensland
dc.contributor Complex Syst Community
dc.contributor Univ Siena
dc.contributor Marine Spatial Ecol Lab
dc.contributor Univ Queensland
dc.contributor Australian Inst Marine Sci
dc.contributor Arc Ctr Excellence Coral Reef Studies MUMBY, PETER J. WOLFF, NICHOLAS H. WONG, AARON VITOLO, RENATO STOLBERG, KRISTIN ANTHONY, KENNETH R. N. 2016-05-19T04:23:12Z 2016-05-19T04:23:12Z 2017-03-21T01:06:13Z 2019-05-09T01:12:56Z 2016-05-19T04:23:12Z 2017-03-21T01:06:13Z 2017-03-21T01:06:13Z 2019-05-09T01:12:56Z 2016-06-01
dc.identifier.citation Wolff NH, Wong A, Vitolo R, Stolberg K, Anthony KRN, Mumby PJ (2016) Temporal clustering of tropical cyclones on the Great Barrier Reef and its ecological importance. Coral Reefs 35(2): 613-623 en_US
dc.identifier.issn 0722-4028
dc.description.abstract Tropical cyclones have been a major cause of reef coral decline during recent decades, including on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). While cyclones are a natural element of the disturbance regime of coral reefs, the role of temporal clustering has previously been overlooked. Here, we examine the consequences of different types of cyclone temporal distributions (clustered, stochastic or regular) on reef ecosystems. We subdivided the GBR into 14 adjoining regions, each spanning roughly 300 km, and quantified both the rate and clustering of cyclones using dispersion statistics. To interpret the consequences of such cyclone variability for coral reef health, we used a model of observed coral population dynamics. Results showed that clustering occurs on the margins of the cyclone belt, being strongest in the southern reefs and the far northern GBR, which also has the lowest cyclone rate. In the central GBR, where rates were greatest, cyclones had a relatively regular temporal pattern. Modelled dynamics of the dominant coral genus, Acropora, suggest that the long-term average cover might be more than 13 % greater (in absolute cover units) under a clustered cyclone regime compared to stochastic or regular regimes. Thus, not only does cyclone clustering vary significantly along the GBR but such clustering is predicted to have a marked, and management-relevant, impact on the status of coral populations. Additionally, we use our regional clustering and rate results to sample from a library of over 7000 synthetic cyclone tracks for the GBR. This allowed us to provide robust reef-scale maps of annual cyclone frequency and cyclone impacts on Acropora. We conclude that assessments of coral reef vulnerability need to account for both spatial and temporal cyclone distributions.
dc.description.sponsorship We thank the National Environmental Research Programme and Australian Research Council for funding. We thank Kerry Emanuel for generously providing synthetic cyclone tracks.
dc.description.sponsorship Funding received from the National Environmental Research Programme and Australian Research Council. en_US
dc.description.uri en_US
dc.language English
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Springer en_US
dc.relation.ispartof Null
dc.subject Typhoon
dc.subject Dispersion
dc.subject Large-scale Disturbance
dc.subject Coral-reefs
dc.subject Acropora-palmata
dc.subject Region
dc.subject Mean Intensity
dc.subject Acropora
dc.subject Disturbance
dc.subject Climate-change
dc.subject Hurricane
dc.subject Damage
dc.subject Marine & Freshwater Biology
dc.subject Impact
dc.subject Temporal Variability
dc.subject Model
dc.subject Variance
dc.title Temporal clustering of tropical cyclones on the Great Barrier Reef and its ecological importance
dc.type journal article en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1007/s00338-016-1400-9
dc.identifier.wos WOS:000376244600025

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