Smith lab Ph.D. candidate, Mike Fox, contributed to a book chapter recently published by colleagues in Marine Macrophytes as Foundation Species that explores the role of marine macrophytes as a source of energy and habitat for nearshore systems. A description of the chapter is below:
Foundation species disproportionately contribute energy and habitat to ecosystems and thus directly facilitate the maintenance of community structure and function. However, a foundation species may not provide the same energy and habitat from place to place due to variability in productivity and population dynamics. In this new book chapter our focus is to examine this important aspect of the foundation species concept through the lens of marine macrophytes (seaweed and seagrasses). Specifically, our chapter seeks to: (1) identify macrophyte taxa that are clearly disproportionate in their provisioning of energy and habitat to their associated communities; (2) describe some of the physiological features that facilitate the role of macrophytes as foundation species; and (3) discuss how variability in the productivity of marine macrophyte foundation species may impact their associated communities.
Graham, M.H., Fox, M.D., and Hamilton, S.L. Macrophyte productivity and the provisioning of energy and habitat to nearshore systems. 2016. In: Marine Macrophytes as Foundation Species (ed. Olafsson, E.), Science Publisher/CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL. ISBN 978-1-498-72324-4,pp. 131-160