Virtual Issue: Marine Ecology 

Edited by Carol Thornber, Amy Austin & David Gibson
October 2015

The Editors of the Journal of Ecology are pleased to present this Virtual Issue on Marine Ecology. Studies on marine primary producers have been an integral part of the scientific field of ecology since the early 1900's, and they have been included in the Journal of Ecology since its inaugural issue in 1913. Recognition of the ecological dynamics of marine photosynthetic organisms (including plants, algae, and cyanobacteria) is crucial, as the oceans cover over 70% of earth's surface, and marine primary producers contribute roughly half of earth's total annual net primary productivity.

Here, we have selected 20 papers on marine ecology that have been published in the Journal of Ecology over the past four years. These span a wide range of ecological topics, including (but not limited to) biodiversity, herbivory, carbon sequestration, genetic diversity, and climate change. Similarly, these studies span a range of marine habitats, such as salt marshes, seagrass beds, rocky shores, and pelagic systems. One article in this Virtual Issue (Vergés et al. 2014) was featured as an Editor's Choice, as it documents the devastating impacts of a range-shifting herbivore, the tropical rabbitfish, in the eastern Mediterranean.

As scientists, our understanding of ecology increases when we investigate and compare ecological dynamics across different systems (terrestrial, aquatic, marine). While the individual research techniques used may vary from one system to another, our research findings can provide insights into broader ecological relationships, as many of these publications demonstrate. We hope that this Virtual Issue encourages stimulating ecological discussions, and we encourage future submissions on the ecology of marine primary producers. We invite you to visit the Journal's blog, as well as follow the Journal of Ecology on Twitter and Facebook.

Carol Thornber
Associate Editor, Journal of Ecology

Should we sync? Seascape-level genetic and ecological factors determine seagrass flowering patterns
Marlene Jahnke, Jordi F. Pagès, Teresa Alcoverro, Paul S. Lavery, Kathryn M. McMahon and Gabriele Procaccini

Rehabilitating the cyanobacteria – niche partitioning, resource use efficiency and phytoplankton community structure during diazotrophic cyanobacterial blooms
Kalle Olli, Riina Klais and Timo Tamminen

Global biogeochemical impacts of phytoplankton: a trait-based perspective
Elena Litchman, Paula de Tezanos Pinto, Kyle F. Edwards, Christopher A. Klausmeier, Colin T. Kremer and Mridul K. Thomas

Impacts of geography, taxonomy and functional group on inorganic carbon use patterns in marine macrophytes
Courtney C. Stepien

Wave-induced changes in seaweed toughness entail plastic modifications in snail traits maintaining consumption efficacy
Markus Molis, Ricardo A. Scrosati, Ehab F. El-Belely, Thomas J. Lesniowski and Martin Wahl

Nutrient enrichment alters the consequences of species loss
Nessa E. O'Connor, Matthew E. S. Bracken, Tasman P. Crowe and Ian Donohue

Impact of seagrass loss and subsequent revegetation on carbon sequestration and stocks
Núria Marbà, Ariane Arias-Ortiz, Pere Masqué, Gary A. Kendrick, Inés Mazarrasa, Geoff R. Bastyan, Jordi Garcia-Orellana and Carlos M. Duarte

Canopy facilitates seaweed recruitment on subtidal temperate reefs
Scott Bennett and Thomas Wernberg

Tropical rabbitfish and the deforestation of a warming temperate sea
Adriana Vergés, Fiona Tomas,, Emma Cebrian, Enric Ballesteros, Zafer Kizilkaya, Panagiotis Dendrinos, Alexandros A. Karamanlidis, David Spiegel and Enric Sala
Editors' Choice

Extreme climate events lower resilience of foundation seagrass at edge of biogeographical range
Matthew W. Fraser, Gary A. Kendrick, John Statton, Renae K. Hovey, Andrea Zavala-Perez and Diana I. Walker

Short-term spatial stability in trophic interactions
Eliecer R. Díaz andChristopher D. McQuaid

Genotypic diversity and trait variance interact to affect marsh plant performance
A. Randall Hughes

Ocean acidification outweighs nutrient effects in structuring seagrass epiphyte communities
Justin E. Campbell and James W. Fourqurean

Phenotypic plasticity promotes persistence following severe events: physiological and morphological responses of seagrass to flooding
Paul S. Maxwell, Kylie A. Pitt, Dana D. Burfeind, Andrew D. Olds, Russell C. Babcock and Rod M. Connolly

Greener pastures? High-density feeding aggregations of green turtles precipitate species shifts in seagrass meadows
Nachiket Kelkar, Rohan Arthur, Núria Marbà and Teresa Alcoverro

Restoration recovers population structure and landscape genetic connectivity in a dispersal-limited ecosystem
Laura K. Reynolds, Michelle Waycott and Karen J. McGlathery

Combined effects of fragmentation and herbivory on Posidonia oceanica seagrass ecosystems
Alessandro Gera, Jordi F. Pagès, Javier Romero andTeresa Alcoverro

Novel chemical weapon of an exotic macroalga inhibits recruitment of native competitors in the invaded range
J. Robin Svensson, Göran M. Nylund, Gunnar Cervin, Gunilla B. Toth and Henrik Pavia

Snail grazing facilitates growth of two morphologically similar bloom-forming Ulva species through different mechanisms
Michele Guidone, Carol S. Thornber and Emily Vincent

Marine megaherbivore grazing may increase seagrass tolerance to high nutrient loads
Marjolijn J. A. Christianen, Laura L. Govers, Tjeerd J. Bouma, Wawan Kiswara, Jan G.M. Roelofs, Leon P. M. Lamers and Marieke M. van Katwijk





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