Ecology and Management of the Bull Kelp, Nereocystis Luetkeana: A Synthesis with Recommendations for Future Research
Ecosystem-based management of coastal marine resources is based, in part, on scientific understanding of the broad (i.e. ecosystem-wide) consequences of human uses of the coastal environment, including resource extraction and degradation of habitats. To wisely manage these resources, a clear understanding of the potential impacts of human activities on the resource and the ecosystem is essential. To contribute to this understanding, this report synthesizes the state of knowledge of (1) the ecology of the bull kelp and its role in coastal ecosystems, (2) the past and present human uses of and impacts on this species and, by extension, the coastal ecosystem, and (3) the past and present approaches to managing this resource. We use this synthesis to identify gaps in our knowledge required to make sound management decisions, and recommend priority research needs to inform management of the human activities that impinge on this species and its ecosystem functions and services. The scope of this review spans studies and management programs from Alaska to central California, and includes both data published in peer-reviewed, scientific journals and non-peer-reviewed data (e.g., produced by governmental agencies and NGOs).
This report includes three components: the written summary included here, an electronic database of all the material used to generate this synthesis, and a compilation of most of this published and gray literature in the form of PDF documents. The literature database was compiled in EndNote (version X), one of the most popular and readily available electronic bibliographic databases. The collection of PDF documents will be available as linked attachments through the Endnote library file as well as on the web at both Dr. Carr’s website at UC Santa Cruz and the Pacific Marine Conservation Council website.