[Coral-List] Reef biodiversity under global change, new paper

Christopher Jury jurycp at hawaii.edu
Tue Oct 26 08:06:42 UTC 2021

Dear colleagues,

Given recent discussions regarding reef biodiversity responses to global
change I wanted to direct you to our new article published in PNAS. The
title, abstract, and link to the paper follow:

Title: Biodiversity of coral reef cryptobiota shuffles but does not decline
under the combined stressors of ocean warming and acidification

Abstract: Ocean-warming and acidification are predicted to reduce coral
reef biodiversity, but the combined effects of these stressors on overall
biodiversity are largely unmeasured. Here, we examined the individual and
combined effects of elevated temperature (+2 °C) and reduced pH (−0.2
units) on the biodiversity of coral reef communities that developed on
standardized sampling units over a 2-y mesocosm experiment. Biodiversity
and species composition were measured using amplicon sequencing libraries
targeting the cytochrome oxidase I (COI) barcoding gene. Ocean-warming
significantly increased species richness relative to present-day control
conditions, whereas acidification significantly reduced richness. Contrary
to expectations, species richness in the combined future ocean treatment
with both warming and acidification was not significantly different from
the present-day control treatment. Rather than the predicted collapse of
biodiversity under the dual stressors, we find significant changes in the
relative abundance but not in the occurrence of species, resulting in a
shuffling of coral reef community structure among the highly species-rich
cryptobenthic community. The ultimate outcome of altered community
structure for coral reef ecosystems will depend on species-specific
ecological functions and community interactions. Given that most species on
coral reefs are members of the understudied cryptobenthos, holistic
research on reef communities is needed to accurately predict
diversity–function relationships and ecosystem responses to future climate



Chris Jury (on behalf of co-authors)

Christopher P. Jury
University of Hawai'i at Manoa
Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology
P.O. Box 1346
Kane'ohe, HI 96744
Academia.edu profile <http://manoa-hawaii.academia.edu/ChristopherJury>
Google Scholar profile

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