Douglas Mccauley

Douglas Mccauley
University of California, Santa Barbara | UCSB · Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology

PhD

About

103
Publications
49,571
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
5,805
Citations

Publications

Publications (103)
Article
Full-text available
Marine protected areas (MPAs) are a key tool for achieving goals for biodiversity conservation and human well-being, including improving climate resilience and equitable access to nature. At a national level, they are central components in the U.S. commitment to conserve at least 30% of U.S. waters by 2030. By definition, the primary goal of an MPA...
Article
Full-text available
Over the past 4 decades there has been a growing concern for the conservation status of elasmobranchs (sharks and rays). In 2002, the first elasmobranch species were added to Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Less than 20 yr later, there were 39 species on Appendix II and 5 o...
Article
Full-text available
Recognized as an emerging global crisis in the mid-1990s, the “nutrition transition” is marked by a shift to Western diets, dominated by highly processed, sugar-sweetened, and high caloric foods. Occurring in parallel to these health transitions are dramatic shifts in the natural systems that underlie food availability and access. Traditionally, en...
Article
Significance How abundant were sharks on Caribbean coral reefs before human impact? To explore this question, we recovered fossilized shark dermal denticles (scales) from a ∼7,000-y-old reef in western Caribbean Panama and compared them with denticles found on modern reefs in the same area. Our data suggest that sharks were over three times more nu...
Article
Full-text available
Globally, anthrax outbreaks pose a serious threat to people, livestock, and wildlife. Furthermore, environmental change can exacerbate these outbreak dynamics by altering the host–pathogen relationship. However, little is known about how the quantitative spatial dynamics of host movement and environmental change may affect the spread of Bacillus an...
Article
Successful species reintroductions require land managers to balance the goal of viable wildlife populations with potential risks to human enterprise. Such risks are particularly acute at the wildland-agriculture interface, where native and domestic species are likely to come into contact. In a national park in northern California, we combined insig...
Article
Large marine protected areas (MPAs) of unprecedented size have recently been established across the global oceans, yet their ability to meet conservation objectives is debated. Key areas of debate include uncertainty over nations' abilities to enforce fishing bans across vast, remote regions and the intensity of human impacts before and after MPA i...
Article
Full-text available
Invasive rodent eradications are frequently undertaken to curb island biodiversity loss. However, the breadth of rodents' ecological impact, even after eradication, is not always fully recognized. For example, the most widespread invasive rodent, the black rat (Rattus rattus), while omnivorous, eats predominantly seeds and fruit. Yet, the effects o...
Article
Full-text available
Global demand for freshwater and marine foods (i.e., seafood) is rising and an increasing proportion is farmed. Aquaculture encompasses a range of species and cultivation methods, resulting in diverse social, economic, nutritional, and environmental outcomes. As a result, how aquaculture develops will influence human wellbeing and environmental hea...
Article
Full-text available
Invasive plants can have significant negative interactions with native flora and fauna, often decreasing the abundance and diversity of native plants and invertebrate and vertebrate herbivores. Less is known, however, about how invasive plants influence higher-order consumers, such as carnivores. Arundo donax is a globally distributed invasive gras...
Article
Full-text available
One of the aims of the United Nations (UN) negotiations on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) is to develop a legal process for the establishment of area-based management tools, including marine protected areas, in ABNJ. Here we use a conservation planning algorithm to integrate...
Article
Boundary spanning – the practice of facilitating knowledge exchange to address complex sustainability challenges – has the potential to align research and policymaking and increase the uptake of research in decision making. But the goals, methods, and outcomes of boundary-spanning activities in the environment sector can be difficult to describe, m...
Article
Full-text available
1.It is challenging to assess long‐term trends in mobile, long‐lived, and relatively rare species such as sharks. Despite ongoing declines in many coastal shark populations, conventional surveys might be too fleeting and too recent to describe population trends over decades to millennia. Placing recent shark declines into historical context should...
Article
Full-text available
The obligate dependency of the common hippopotamus, Hippopotamus amphibius, on water makes them particularly vulnerable to hydrological disturbances. Despite the threats facing this at-risk species, there is a lack of information regarding H. amphibius spatial ecology. We used high-resolution tracking data of male H. amphibius to assess home range...
Article
Full-text available
Bolbometopon muricatum are ecologically unique mega-consumers in coral reef ecosystems. They primarily divide their dietary intake between living scleractinian corals and coral rock, a substrate richly colonized by non-coral biota. Here we examine how the chemical, structural, and energetic content of these two main classes of forage material may i...
Article
Full-text available
Native forests on islands throughout the global tropics face increasing pressure from the human-driven expansion of coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) planted for the purposes of coconut oil harvest. Conversion from native forests to Cocos monocultures leads to drastic ecological consequences in island environments and alters terrestrial and marine food...
Article
Full-text available
The ecological importance of the common hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) in aquatic ecosystems is becoming increasingly well known. These unique megaherbivores are also likely to have a formative influence on the terrestrial ecosystems in which they forage. In this study, we employed a novel exclosure design to exclude H. amphibius from experi...
Article
Full-text available
Shark sanctuaries are an ambitious attempt to protect huge areas of ocean space to curtail overfishing of sharks. If shark sanctuaries are to succeed, effective surveillance and enforcement is urgently needed. We use a case study with a high level of illegal shark fishing within a shark sanctuary to help motivate three actionable opportunities to c...
Article
Full-text available
The patterns by which different nations share global fisheries influence outcomes for food security, trajectories of economic development, and competition between industrial and small-scale fishing. We report patterns of industrial fishing effort for vessels flagged to higher- and lower-income nations, in marine areas within and beyond national jur...
Article
Recent increases in human disturbance pose significant threats to migratory species using collective movement strategies. Key threats to migrants may differ depending on behavioural traits (e.g. collective navigation), taxonomy and the environmental system (i.e. freshwater, marine or terrestrial) associated with migration. We quantitatively assess...
Article
Full-text available
Cross-boundary transfers of nutrients can profoundly shape the ecology of recipient systems. The common hippopotamus, Hippopotamus amphibius, is a significant vector of such subsidies from terrestrial to river ecosystems. We compared river pools with high and low densities of H. amphibius to determine how H. amphibius subsidies shape the chemistry...
Article
Full-text available
Between 1950 and 1989, marine fisheries catch in the open-ocean and deep-sea beyond 200 nautical miles from shore increased by a factor of more than 10. While high seas catches have since plateaued, fishing effort continues to increase linearly. The combination of increasing effort and illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing has led to ov...
Article
Full-text available
Designated large-scale marine protected areas (LSMPAs, 100,000 or more square kilometers) constitute over two-thirds of the approximately 6.6% of the ocean and approximately 14.5% of the exclusive economic zones within marine protected areas. Although LSMPAs have received support among scientists and conservation bodies for wilderness protection, r...
Article
Full-text available
Classically, biomass partitioning across trophic levels was thought to add up to a pyramidal distribution. Numerous exceptions have, however, been noted including complete pyramidal inversions. Elevated levels of biomass top-heaviness (i.e. high consumer/resource biomass ratios) have been reported from Arctic tundra communities to Brazilian phytote...
Article
Full-text available
Strong decreases in greenhouse gas emissions are required to meet the reduction trajectory resolved within the 2015 Paris Agreement. However, even these decreases will not avert serious stress and damage to life on Earth, and additional steps are needed to boost the resilience of ecosystems, safeguard their wildlife, and protect their capacity to s...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding the effects of anthropogenic disturbance on zoonotic disease risk is both a critical conservation objective and a public health priority. Here, we evaluate the effects of multiple forms of anthropogenic disturbance across a precipitation gradient on the abundance of pathogen-infected small mammal hosts in a multi-host, multi-pathogen...
Article
Full-text available
What did coral reef ecosystems look like before human impacts became pervasive? Early efforts to reconstruct baselines resulted in the controversial suggestion that pristine coral reefs have inverted trophic pyramids, with disproportionally large top predator biomass. The validity of the coral reef inverted trophic pyramid has been questioned, but...
Article
Full-text available
For broadly distributed, often overexploited species such as elasmobranchs (sharks and rays), conservation management would benefit from understanding how life history traits change in response to local environmental and ecological factors. However, fishing obfuscates this objective by causing complex and often mixed effects on the life histories o...
Data
Capture-recapture data for Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos caught at Palmyra Atoll used to estimate the Francis growth model. (PDF)
Article
Biological invasions are a pervasive and dominant form of anthropogenic disturbance. However, we seldom have the opportunity to evaluate the long-term, indirect, and often slow-moving cascading effects of invasions at the community and ecosystem scale. Here we synthesize the collective knowledge from 10 years of study on the influence of the deep h...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropocene defaunation, the global extinction of faunal species and populations and the decline in abundance of individuals within populations, has been predominantly documented in terrestrial ecosystems, but indicators suggest defaunation has been more severe in freshwater ecosystems. Marine defaunation is in a more incipient stage, yet pronounc...
Article
Here, we identify the extant species of marine megafauna (>45 kg maximum reported mass), provide a conceptual template for the ways in which these species influence the structure and function of ocean ecosystems, and review the published evidence for such influences. Ecological influences of more than 90% of the 338 known species of extant ocean me...
Article
De-extinction, or the process of resurrecting extinct species, has been advanced as a promising new tool in conservation biology. Most scientific discussion of de-extinction has thus far focused on the methodology and ethics of bringing once-extinct species back to life. We ask: how can de-extinction be strategically shaped into a service that maxi...
Article
Full-text available
Christopher Golden and colleagues calculate that declining numbers of marine fish will spell more malnutrition in many developing nations.
Article
Full-text available
1. Manta and devil rays of the subfamily Mobulinae (mobulids) are rarely studied, large, pelagic elasmobranchs, with all eight of well-evaluated species listed on the IUCN Red List as threatened or near threatened. 2. Mobulids have life history characteristics (matrotrophic reproduction, extremely low fecundity, and delayed age of first reproductio...
Article
The ocean remains the least observed part of our planet. This deficiency was made obvious by two recent developments in ocean governance: the emerging global movement to create massive marine protected areas (MPAs) ( 1 ) and a new commitment by the United Nations (UN) to develop a legally binding treaty to better manage high-seas biodiversity ( 2 )...
Article
Anthropogenic disturbances involving land use change, climate disruption, pollution, and invasive species have been shown to impact immune function of wild animals. These immune changes have direct impacts on the fitness of impacted animals and, also, potentially indirect effects on other species and on ecological processes, notably involving the s...
Conference Paper
Baseline population estimates are lacking for most species of reef shark. The grey reef shark (Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos), which is listed as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, is highly mobile and therefore particularly difficult to monitor. At the same time, its mobility is precisely what has stymied its protection in mu...
Article
Full-text available
The common hippopotamus, Hippopotamus amphibius, transports millions of tons of organic matter annually from its terrestrial feeding grounds into aquatic habitats. We evaluated whether carbon stable isotopes (δ13C) can be used as tracers for determining whether H. amphibius-vectored allochthonous material is utilized by aquatic consumers. Two appro...
Article
Full-text available
Many species of large wildlife have declined drastically worldwide. These reductions often lead to profound shifts in the ecology of entire communities and ecosystems. However, the effects of these large-wildlife declines on other taxa likely hinge upon both underlying abiotic properties of these systems and on the types of secondary anthropogenic...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding the effects of land-use change on zoonotic disease risk is a pressing global health concern. Here, we compare prevalence of Yersinia pestis, the etiologic agent of plague, in rodents across two land-use types-agricultural and conserved-in northern Tanzania. Estimated abundance of seropositive rodents nearly doubled in agricultural sit...
Article
The relative importance of both environmental factors and host factors in explaining variation in prevalence and intensity of flea parasitism in small mammal communities is poorly established. We examine these relationships in an East African savanna landscape, considering multiple host levels: across individuals within a population, across populat...
Article
Full-text available
Marine defaunation, or human-caused animal loss in the oceans, emerged forcefully only hundreds of years ago, whereas terrestrial defaunation has been occurring far longer. Though humans have caused few global marine extinctions, we have profoundly affected marine wildlife, altering the functioning and provisioning of services in every ocean. Curre...
Chapter
Over the past decade, the benefits that healthy oceans provide have increasingly become the focus of science, management, and policy making (e.g., Halpern et al. 2012, Samhouri et al. 2013). Productive oceans enhance food security (Garcia and Rosenberg 2010), and marine habitats protect millions of people from floods, hurricanes, and typhoons (Barb...
Article
The discomfort expressed by Masuda and Scharks in linking wildlife declines to social conflict and Smith's concern about harvest effort increasing when wildlife declines reinforce the central message of our Policy Forum: Despite growing evidence of the importance of wildlife-society linkages, these
Article
Full-text available
The range of the sicklefin lemon shark (Negaprion acutidens) is expanded to include Palmyra Atoll, in the Northern Line Islands, central Pacific. Despite the fact that researchers have been studying reef and lagoon flat habitats of the Atoll since 2003, lemon sharks were first observed in 2010, suggesting a recent colonization event. To date, only...
Article
Full-text available
Quantifying the ecological importance of individual habitats to highly mobile animals is challenging because patterns of habitat reliance for these taxa are complex and difficult to observe. We investigated the importance of lagoons to the manta ray, Manta alfredi, a wide-ranging and vulnerable species in a less-disturbed atoll ecosystem. Lagoons a...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Ecologists lack a clear model for how to incorporate information on consumer mobility into investigations of how communities are structured and how they operate. This deficiency is becoming increasingly apparent as new technologies broaden our insight into the dynamics of consumer mobility. Classically, ecologists draw...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods The common hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) is thought to play a key role in African ecosystems by shaping vegetation patterns on land with its nightly grazing forays, and fertilizing aquatic ecosystems by defecating in them during the day. Little is known about the spatial ecology of H. amphibius or the extent at...
Article
Species that are strong interactors play disproportionately important roles in the dynamics of natural ecosystems. It has been proposed that their presence is necessary for positively shaping the structure and functioning of ecosystems. We evaluated this hypothesis using the case of the world's largest parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum), a globall...
Article
Full-text available
Policies aimed at reducing wildlife-related conflict must address the underlying causes.