[Coral-List] Collaborative project on mesophotic reefs

Gal Eyal gal4596 at gmail.com
Sun Oct 15 08:06:54 EDT 2017

Dear listers (apologies for cross-posting),

We are writing to invite you to collaborate on a project we are working on
to identify the key questions revolving around Mesophotic Coral Ecosystems
(MCEs) and Temperate Mesophotic Ecosystems (TMEs) in order to increase the
ability to make effective conservation and management actions globally.
This information will be used to drive conversations at the upcoming
mesophotic reef workshop at the European Coral Reef Symposium (ECRS) in
Oxford, UK. *We greatly encourage you to contribute even if you are not
attending the workshop*.

As we enter the Anthropocene era marine systems, and coral reefs, in
particular, are facing an escalating threat from a suite of pressures
including climate change in particular. The future of coral reefs now
depends on building innovative partnerships, redefining management goals,
and building institutions for effective governance. In order to do this
appropriately and effectively, researchers and policymakers must have a
detailed understanding of the ecosystem in question and human interactions
with them.

MCEs lie at depths beyond those typically associated with tropical coral
reef ecosystems (30-150m). MCEs can harbor diverse biological assemblages
of corals, fish, and other invertebrates. Some species are highly endemic
to these systems, highlighting MCE’s importance in contributing to and
maintaining global biodiversity. Similarly, high-diverse coral-dominated
ecosystems are also present in the twilight zone of temperate seas, such as
the Mediterranean. MCEs are a relatively new ecosystem in terms of
scientific research interest where, as a result, our knowledge of these
systems is limited and localized to specific geographic locations. Many key
questions currently remain unanswered, where obtaining an answer can be
particularly challenging especially as marine research is expensive and
logistically difficult, particularly in the case of MCEs.

Research prioritization exercises have proved to be useful tools for
emerging scientific disciplines and have been utilized in
conservation-related fields. High participation exercises and workshop
projects help create agreement on the most important issues that need
answering to address management of conservation problems.  This exercise is
designed to identify questions that, if answered, would greatly increase
the ability to make effective conservation and management actions globally.
We draw your attention to the attached papers by Sutherland et al. (2013)
and Parsons et al. (2014) as examples of the type of work we are looking to

The aim of this study is to create a list of questions to prioritize
research topics. Participants are encouraged to take the following into
account while thinking of questions:

1.       Question must be of global importance

2.       The current lack of an answer must be impeding a wider
understanding of MCE processes or management/conservation progress

3.       Question is answerable through a realistic research design

4.       Should not be answerable by a simple Yes / No

5.       The answer should be factual, and not based on a value judgment,
with a measurable outcome.

If you are willing to support this study, it would be greatly appreciated
if you could fill out the following Google Form by *FRIDAY 3RD NOVEMBER*,
where we are collating the information: https://goo.gl/forms/

You will be appropriately acknowledged for your contributions. We envisage
the output to consist of a peer-reviewed publication, where authorship will
be considered based upon the attached criteria.

If you have any questions with regards to this exercise then please feel
free to get in touch with Joe Turner (joseph.turner at research.uwa.edu.au).

We thank you in advance for your time,

Many thanks,

Joe Turner, Dom Andradi-Brown, Andrea Gori, and Gal Eyal


Survey form - https://goo.gl/forms/2VsOpGWYrfMCenRH3

Authorship requirements -

Parsons et al. 2014 -

Sutherland et al. 2011 -

Gal Eyal
School of Zoology, Tel-Aviv University
Address: The Interuniversity Institute for Marine Sciences in Eilat,
P.O.B:469, Zip:88103, Israel
Mobile: +972-(0)50-7384422
Office: +972-(0)8-6360119
Fax: +972-(0)8-6374329 (For Gal Eyal - Tel Aviv University)
E-mail: Galeyal at mail.tau.ac.il, Gal4596 at gmail.com
Web: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Gal_Eyal

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