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Historical Recount of the Great South Bay Ecosystem, Long Island, New York and A Quantitative Assessment of the Ecosystem Structure of Great South Bay using Ecopath

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dc.contributor.advisor Frisk, Michael G. en_US
dc.contributor.author Nuttall, Matthew Andrew en_US
dc.contributor.other Department of Marine and Atmospheric Science en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2012-05-15T18:05:24Z
dc.date.available 2012-05-15T18:05:24Z
dc.date.issued 1-Aug-10 en_US
dc.date.submitted Aug-10 en_US
dc.identifier Nuttall_grad.sunysb_0771M_10261.pdf en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1951/55565
dc.description.abstract The Great South Bay (GSB) ecosystem has provided marine resources to Long Island residents for well over 300 years. However, various external stressors have threatened this system, marked with declines in multiple stocks and ecosystem indices. A historical review was conducted, indicating GSB has shifted to an dominated by lower trophic groups. Of the twelve stocks with identifiable temporal abundance trends, eight are currently declining. These stock declines have been met with drops in recent harvests of GSB fisheries. In addition to monetary losses to local fishermen, the lack of a commercially dominant shellfish stock may leave GSB without a dominant filter feeder, facilitating the brown tide blooms that have affected stocks of plankton, shellfish, finfish, and eelgrass since 1985. Ecosystem models were developed to elucidate the predominant drivers of the ecosystem and determine the expected impact of external GSB stressors over the last 120 years. Mass-balanced food web models indicated GSB has seen concurrent drops in size and system maturity. Twenty two of the twenty four ecosystem maturity indices measured an overall drop. GSB has experienced consistent reductions in size and structure indicating the system is under stress. Indeed, trends consistent with habitat degradation, alterations to physical conditions, phosphorus loading, and overfishing were observed. Determination of cause and effect between multiple system stressors and modeled ecosystem structure was no achieved but the results can help enhance efforts aimed at restoration by providing an understanding of system changes and historic baselines. Future modeling attempts should address the feasibility of a return to historic baselines and the management strategy that would be required to achieve such a change. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Stony Brook University Libraries. SBU Graduate School in Department of Marine and Atmospheric Science. Lawrence Martin (Dean of Graduate School). en_US
dc.format Electronic Resource en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher The Graduate School, Stony Brook University: Stony Brook, NY. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Biology, Oceanography -- Environmental Sciences en_US
dc.subject.other Assessment, Ecosystem, Fisheries, Great South Bay, Historic, Variations en_US
dc.title Historical Recount of the Great South Bay Ecosystem, Long Island, New York and A Quantitative Assessment of the Ecosystem Structure of Great South Bay using Ecopath en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.description.advisor Advisor(s): Michael G. Frisk. Committee Member(s): Robert M. Cerrato; Adrian Jordaan. en_US
dc.mimetype Application/PDF en_US

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