[Coral-List] BioScience article: Ecology of Caribbean sponges from molecule to ecosystem

Pawlik, Joseph pawlikj at uncw.edu
Thu Nov 10 09:25:51 EST 2011

Hi Coral-listers,

I'd like to alert you to the cover article in this month's Bioscience, which summarizes the last 20 years of research by my group on the chemical ecology of sponges on Caribbean coral reefs.
This synthesis is notable in ecology because of its span from the level of molecules to an entire ecosystem, and because of its validation of theoretical concepts of resource allocation, for which there has been only limited success from studies of terrestrial systems.  The conceptual model presented in the article illustrates a simple, clear and predictive narrative that is rare in ecology.

Our ongoing surveys indicate that sponges now cover more reef surface than hard corals on >60% of Caribbean coral reefs.  We are currently investigating how different levels of fishing pressure (from the indiscriminate use of fish traps to the long-term imposition of marine protected areas) alter the abundance of sponge-eating fishes, and consequently, the composition of the sponge and coral community on reefs across the Caribbean.
Pawlik, J.R. 2011. The chemical ecology of sponges on Caribbean reefs: Natural products shape natural systems. BioScience, 61: 888-898.
If you don't have access to the article through your institutional website, you can find it as #113 at this website:



Joseph R. Pawlik, Professor
Department of Biology and Marine Biology
UNCW Center for Marine Science
5600 Marvin K Moss Lane
Wilmington, NC  28409   USA
pawlikj at uncw.edu<mailto:pawlikj at uncw.edu>; Office:(910)962-2377; Cell:(910)232-3579
Website: http://people.uncw.edu/pawlikj/index.html
PDFs: http://people.uncw.edu/pawlikj/pubs2.html

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