From February 17th to 24 th Dr. Graham Edgar of the University of Tasmania and his working group of ten scientists from Australia, Finland, New Zealand, Canada and the United Kingdom held a workshop at the Huinay Scientific Field Station in northern Patagonia, Chile. These investigators seek to address how climate change affects the abundance of marine life around the world. They are targeting elevated water temperatures, effects on reef species, and the role of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle.
In addition, Dr. Edgar revisited the Reef Life Survey sites he originally monitored in 2012. Reef Life Survey (RLS) is a worldwide citizen science program to monitor global marine biodiversity. Dr. Edgar previously used the RLS data in his investigation of the effectiveness of marine protected areas worldwide. The study, published in the renowned journal Nature, concluded that at least 4 of 5 key criteria need to be met for protected areas to have significant impact in comparison with unprotected waters: no-take area, well-enforced, large size (more than 100 sq. km), old (older 10 years), and isolated by deep water or sand.
The working group performed the nine transect dives for RLS with the staff of the Huinay station. Dives will continue to inform both regional (over the past seven years) and global studies of changing marine biodiversity. Throughout the week, scientists discussed findings, modeled data and outlined three future publications.
Researchers included Dr. Graham Edgar, Dr. Rick Stuart-Smith, Dr. Jemina Stuart-Smith, Dr. Ross Corkrey and Judy Corkrey from the University of Tasmania, Dr. Mike Burrows from the Scottish Association for Marine Science, Dr. Mark Costello, Katherine Kelly, and Lena Hartebrodt from University of Auckland, Dr. Laura Henriques Antao from University of Helsinki, and Dr. Amanda Bates from Memorial University of Newfoundland.