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A new method for predicting the response of ecosystems to marine heatwaves

An international team of marine scientists from Hong Kong, Japan, and Canada, led by Dr Bayden D RUSSELL (Associate Director of the Swire Institute of Marine Science and Associate Professor from the School of Biological Sciences, The University of Hong Kong), including Dr Ben HARVEY (University of Tsukuba), Dr Katie MARSHALL and Professor Christopher HARLEY (University of British Columbia), have developed a new framework to allow us to not only understand the effects of marine heatwaves, but potentially predict their effects before they occur. This new method will allow researchers worldwide to identify the key biological traits of marine species in their region and predict how they are likely to be stressed by heatwaves. Most importantly, using this trait-based approach will allow managers and policy makers to identify the key species which are needed to support ecosystem function and develop strategies to help mitigate the damage caused by heatwaves.

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