Integrative Biodiversity Assessment of Coral-Sponge Communities of W Florida Shelf: Establishing a Baseline for a Sensitive Ecosystem
University of Florida
DWH Project Funding
Known Leveraged Funding
Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI)
Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) Grant Program
Human and/or Institutional Capacity
The BP oil crisis has brought home how little we know about benthic marine communities of the West Florida shelf, and how this lack of knowledge will limit our ability to assess impacts and plan remediation. The crisis also comes at the general time when marine resource management is undergoing a broad shift in focus from focusing on exploited species, to assessing ecosystems, and a necessary scaling up in our capacity to assess, monitor, and to generally better understand marine biodiversity.