My PhD project is about the tropicalisation of temperate seagrass meadows of Western Australia and its consequences to ecosystems.
Climate-driven changes profoundly alter the structure and functioning of marine ecosystems. As the water temperature rises, the tropical herbivorous fishes are expected to extend towards the cooler, temperate waters, and the temperate species – to retract southwards. Shifting their ranges, the tropical species increase in abundance and interact with native fauna, competing for essential resources and changing the food web structures of seagrass habitats.
My research attempts to understand the contribution of tropical herbivores to fish assemblages in temperate seagrass meadows and the impact of poleward-moving tropical Siganus species on temperate seagrass complexes along the western coast of Australia.
Mrs Maria Samsonova
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