Martin Attrill

Martin Attrill
University of Plymouth | UoP · Marine Institute

BSc, PhD

About

208
Publications
110,221
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9,419
Citations
Citations since 2017
33 Research Items
3531 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230100200300400500600
20172018201920202021202220230100200300400500600
20172018201920202021202220230100200300400500600

Publications

Publications (208)
Article
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The UK government has committed to a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions for England and Wales by 20% below 1990 levels by 2010 and to increase the amount of electrical energy generated by renewable energy sources to 10% by 2010 and 15% by 2015. Wave and tidal energy are likely to contribute significantly to achieving these targets as important r...
Article
The 2003 Marine Parks Congress recommended networks of marine reserves to be established covering 20–30% of habitats by 2012. Most marine reserves are, however, failing to meet their objectives, the main reason being attributed to lack of funding. In light of the growing need for effectively managed marine reserves, a survey ascertaining tourists'...
Article
Collection of marine invertebrates for use as fishing bait is a substantial activity in many parts of the world, often with unknown ecological consequences. As new fisheries develop, it is critical for environmental managers to have high quality ecological information regarding the potential impacts, in order to develop sound management strategies....
Article
Many commercially important marine fishes are found in estuaries, particularly as juveniles. The estuaries may provide a thermal resource, refuge from predators and a source of abundant prey. Here, carbon (δ13C) and sulphur (δ34S) stable isotope data from coastally caught common sole (Solea solea) and whiting (Merlangius merlangus) were used in ind...
Article
An intertidal Zostera marina landscape in Torbay, Devon, UK, was sampled to investigate the relationship between patch size, diversity and infaunal assemblage composition with the intention of defining a minimum Zostera patch size where the infaunal seagrass assemblage becomes distinct from the bare sand assemblage. All Zostera patches were found t...
Article
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The colour of sportswear has been shown to influence the outcome of bouts for several different combat sports. The generality of these effects, and whether they extend to collaborative forms of contests (team sports), is uncertain. Since 1947, English football teams wearing red shirts have been champions more often than expected on the basis of the...
Article
Estuaries are regarded as valuable nursery habitats for many commercially important marine fishes, potentially providing a thermal resource, refuge from predators and a source of abundant prey. Stable isotope analysis may be used to assess relative resource use from isotopically distinct sources. This study comprised two major components: (1) devel...
Article
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Coral reefs worldwide have suffered extensive decline in density and diversity. Brazilian coral reefs were spared natural acute stresses that have had key influences on Caribbean and Indo-Pacific corals. Their demise is due mainly to human activities, especially nutrification. This study presents a review of the current state of knowledge of coasta...
Article
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The circulation of Atlantic water along the European continental slope, in particular the inflow into the North Sea, influences North Sea water characteristics with consequent changes in the environment affecting plankton community dynamics. The long-term effect of fluctuating oceanographic conditions on the North Sea pelagic ecosystem is assessed....
Article
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The first reports of Sargassum muticum occurring in British waters coincided with a warning that this invasive alga may replace seagrass beds, particularly those of Zostera marina. Initial fears were allayed when subsequent research suggested that both species required different attachment substrata, and, therefore, S. muticum would be unable to re...
Article
The provision of artificial shelters for the collection of crabs, known as crab-tiling, and the subsequent harvesting of the soft "peeler" crabs for angling bait, are associated with trampling disturbance of intertidal mudflats in the United Kingdom. Recovery of meiofauna communities following crab-tiling activity was investigated on an intertidal...
Article
Many animals are sexually dimorphic, but the underlying evolutionary causes and ecological consequences of sexual dimorphism are not fully understood. One predicted consequence for sexual dimorphism is that different sexes show niche differentiation. If sexual dimorphism is in feeding appendages, then differences may be manifested by different diet...
Article
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Within the phytoplankton community, diatoms and dinoflagellates have diverse roles, different spatial patterns and contrasting trophic value: diatoms are the foundation of the copepod-fish food web while dinoflagellates appear less valuable. Changes in relative abundance of these two phytoplankton groups have been linked to pressures such as climat...
Article
We present results from a seven year (1995–2001) study on the coral reefs in Bahia (Brazil), the reef invertebrate community being severely impacted by the 1997–98 El Niño Southern Oscillation event. Despite local extinction of some taxa, the urchin Diadema antillarum was the only species out of a total of 678 enumerated demonstrating a significant...
Article
European society is experiencing unprecedented changes triggered by expansion of the European Union, the fall of Communism, economic growth and the onset of globalisation. Europe's regional seas, the Baltic, Black Sea, Mediterranean and North-East Atlantic (including the North Sea), provide key goods and services to the human population but have su...
Article
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The Chinese mitten crab, Eriocheir sinensis is a successful invader. Whilst non-breeding adult E. sinensis have been associated with the destruction of riverbanks, little is known about the ecology of this species in its invaded areas. This is especially true of the juveniles which are a key migratory stage. Intertidal surveys along the Thames estu...
Article
During the 1980s, a rapid increase in the Phytoplankton Colour Index (PCI), a semiquantitative visual estimate of algal biomass, was observed in the North Sea as part of a regionwide regime shift. Two new data sets created from the relationship between the PCI and SeaWiFS chlorophyll "a" (Chl "a') quantify differences in the previous and current re...
Article
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Long-term monitoring data collected in the Thames estuary, UK, were used to investigate inter-annual trends in year-end size and growth rate of smelt Osmerus eperlanus (L.). Patterns were related to variations in the thermal opportunity for growth, defined in terms of temperature-dependent cumulative degree-days at estuarine temperatures >= 5 degre...
Article
Data obtained since 1958 from the continuous plankton recorder show an increasing occurrence of jellyfish in the central North Sea that is positively related to the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Atlantic inflow to the northern North Sea. Since 1970, jellyfish frequency has been also significantly negatively correlated with mean annual pH, in...
Thesis
Full-text available
The ecological effects of the green shore crab Carcinus maenas (L.) fishery was investigated in estuaries on the south west coast of the UK. The fishery known as ‘crab-tiling’ involves ‘crab-tilers’ laying artificial refugia such as car tyres, guttering or roof tiles, intertidally in estuaries. ‘Crab-tiles’ are specifically laid on mudflats and san...
Article
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Habitat complexity plays an important role in the structuring of ecological assemblages in many terrestrial, freshwater and marine habitats. In this study, we investigated the effects of increased habitat complexity on the diversity and abundance of macrofauna colonising artificial kelp holdfasts of 3 varying levels of complexity. The artificial ho...
Article
Recent research and management plans for seagrass habitats have called for landscape level approaches. The present study examines the spatial utilisation of subtidal seagrass beds by fish and decapods around the coast of Jersey (49°N 02° W). A hierarchical scale of landscape configuration and the plant characteristics of eight seagrass beds were me...
Article
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The Mediterranean endemic seagrass Posidonia oceanica forms beds characterised by a dense leaf canopy and a thick root-rhizome ‘matte’. Death of P. oceanica shoots leads to exposure of the underlying matte, which can persist for many years, and is termed ‘dead’ matte. Traditionally, dead matte has been regarded as a degraded habitat. To test whethe...
Article
We examined the influence of seasonality and anthropogenic activity on the delivery of land-based nutrients to coral reefs in eastern Brazil. Seawater and porewater were sampled during dry and rainy seasons in three nearshore and offshore reefs with distinct nutrient inputs along the south coast of Bahia State, and analysed for total oxidised nitro...
Article
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Vegetation data including plant cover, biomass, species richness, and vegetation height was sampled on a copper-contaminated field with total copper contents varying from 50 to almost 3,000 mg/kg soil. The field was covered by early succession grassland dominated by Agrostis stolonifera. Plant cover, biomass, species richness, and vegetation height...
Article
Recent research has identified a need for seagrass habitat management plans to be based on landscape-level approaches as they offer a more appropriate scale for large mobile fauna than smaller scales. Also, conservation decisions are more likely to be a choice between different seagrass beds rather than parts of individual beds. The present study e...
Article
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In April/May each year from 1995 to 2000, ascidians were sampled randomly with 35 1m2 quadrats from three different reef habitats (intertidal reef tops, coastal reef walls and shallow-bank reefs) at four replicate localities (Praia do Forte, Itacimirim, Guarajuba and Abai) in northern Bahia (Brazil). As the sampling period included the 1997/1998 El...
Article
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The present study describes the spatial and temporal patterns of surficial sediments within the transition zone of the terrigenous and carbonate (CO) provinces in the Southern Gulf of Mexico after flood events during the rainy season of 1999. The sampling design consisted of two across-shelf (A, B) and two along-shelf (C, D) transects that followed...
Article
The Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR) survey has been used to characterize phytoplankton and zooplankton space–time dynamics in the North Sea since 1931 and in the North Atlantic since 1939. Phytoplankton biomass is assessed from these samples by visual assessment of the green color of the silk mesh, the Phytoplankton Color Index (PCI), and the to...
Article
Most herring Clupea harengus and sprat Sprattus sprattus sampled from West Thurrock power station intake screens, middle Thames estuary, between 1977 and 1992 were age-0 and followed regular patterns of seasonal occurrence. Juvenile herring entered the estuary in July, peaked in abundance November to March, and then declined. Juvenile sprat first a...
Article
Full-text available
Considering the long history of oil extraction and the numerous platforms that exist in the southern Gulf of Mexico, a regional approach has been used to investigate the impact of oil-related activities on the macrobenthic community. The objective was to determine the effect of oil-related activity in a region known to have a highly variable benthi...
Article
Seagrass beds occur in various morphological forms, ranging from small patches to continuous meadows. The endemic Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica forms dense and extensive stands that occur in several different morphotypes, including reticulate (seagrass interspersed with a different habitat type, such as bare sand) and continuous beds. T...
Article
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We estimated the abundance of a small population of threespine stickleback, Gasterosteus aculeatus, by mark-recapture over a 21 year period. Length-frequency analysis showed that the population in October consisted almost entirely of young-of-the-year. The per capita annual rate of increase was inversely related to abundance in October. Time series...
Article
Temperature (i.e. habitat at any given temperature) is an ecological resource for which organisms compete to maximise growth and other fitness measures, but the temperature (thermal habitat)-resource concept has not been widely applied to the study of estuarine fish. Temperature–abundance relationships for 16 fish and four invertebrate species from...
Article
We studied the relationship between abundance and extent of occupancy of 158 species of macrofauna inhabiting 66 sandy beaches around the coast of Great Britain. We also used these data to test the predictions of two hypotheses proposed to explain positive abundance-occupancy relationships. We found a strong positive relationship between abundance...
Article
The 1997–1998 El-Niño Southern Oscillation was the most severe on record and dramatically impacted corals worldwide. However, the effect of this event on the associated community of reef organisms has received much less attention. The composition of the bryozoan assemblage from the coral reefs of Northern Bahia, Brazil were monitored annually from...
Article
Full-text available
The 1997-98 El Niño event was the most severe on record, resulting in record elevated water temperatures across much of the world's tropical ocean regions. This event triggered extensive bleaching of coral reefs world-wide, but little information is available on the impact of this major global event on the non-coral invertebrates associated with re...
Article
Summary • Body size is a central parameter in determining prey selection, and where animals exhibit large increases in size, ontogenetic diet shifts are common. Optimal foraging models have proved to be useful tools in predicting changes in diet, but previous applications have been limited to those associated with changes in external drivers such a...
Article
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Macroecology is essentially concerned with understanding the large-scale patterns in organisms' abundance and distribution, and determining how these patterns arise. Whilst macroecological studies abound in terrestrial and freshwater ecology, few comparable studies have ever been conducted using marine data. We examined the relationships between me...
Article
The influence of large-scale natural disturbance from winter storms (‘northers’) and river runoff on the macrobenthic community structure of the southern Gulf of Mexico was investigated in both carbonate and transitional carbonate–terrigenous sedimentary environments. Samples of the infauna were obtained in three seasons from 13 stations from two 2...
Article
Data on the relative abundance of Syngnathus rostellatus Nilsson sampled over 16 years from a power station on the Thames estuary were used to investigate linkages between estuarine environmental and seasonal variables and fluctuations in pipefish abundance using multiple regression. Temperature was the dominant influence on abundance and, when com...
Article
The composition of meiobenthic and macrobenthic communities between different intertidal reef-flat pools on Rocas Atoll (South Atlantic) was compared, and related to properties of the carbonate sediments and patterns of reef growth. Both univariate and multivariate statistical analyses showed that the reef height and size influenced the properties...
Article
Full-text available
Human activities have substantially increased the natural flux of nutrients to coastal systems worldwide. In Brazilian reefs, all major stresses (sedimentation, overfishing, tourism-related activities and nutrification) are human induced. To assess nutrification levels in Brazilian coastal reefs, measurements of the distribution patterns of nutrien...
Article
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This study provides the first semi-quantititative account of the benthic campanulariid hydroids from Northern Bahia (Brazil), down to a depth of 60 m, based largely on collections obtained since 1992. Colonies were collected from six habitats along the coast of Salvador City, Todos os Santos Bay, Itaparica Island and at the northernmost part of the...
Article
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Within-bed variation of epiphytic algal assemblages was studied in 3 Zostera marina beds around Plymouth Sound (Devon, United Kingdom) in order to determine if distance from edge of bed affected the assemblage composition. Replicate seagrass samples were taken at 0, 1, 3 and 6 m along a transect running from the edge of each bed. Individual epiphyt...
Article
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The number of species in an assemblage at a given point in time is a fundamental property of ecological systems, yet it is hard to quantify for many marine systems. We studied the performance of 6 techniques ('estimators') for extrapolating species richness from limited numbers of samples, using 3 datasets for which an absolute value for total spec...
Article
Full-text available
We are reporting on the results of a 4-year study that allowed for the analysis of the effects of the 1997–1998 El Nio Southern Oscillation (ENSO) event on the cnidarian community of the naturally high-turbidity reefs of northern Bahia, Brazil. Cnidarian densities were significantly different between pre- and post-ENSO years, with significant conse...
Article
Two main ecological boundaries, ecotone and ecocline, have been defined in landscape ecology. At this scale, the estuary represents a boundary between rivers and the sea, but there has been no attempt to fit empirical data for estuaries to these boundary models. An extensive data set from the Thames estuary was analysed using multivariate technique...
Article
Full-text available
Local-scale studies provide fishery agencies with essential information on the relative importance of seagrass beds as habitats. Combinations of day/night and low/high tide trawls within the same shallow bay were used to identify significant differences in the commercial species associated with seagrass (Zostera marina) and unvegetated sand. ANOVA...
Article
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Pomatoschistus microps (Pisces: Gobiidae), a predatory, benthic feeder, occurs in high densities in variable, shallow, muddy coastal waters where prey availability can be unpredictable. Here, we investigate the effect and consequences of prey depletion on the body condition and nest building of adult male fish using manipulative mesocosm experiment...
Article
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Understanding the fluctuations in marine fish stocks is important for the management of fisheries, and attempts have been made to demonstrate links with oceanographic and climatic variability, including the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). The NAO has been correlated with a range of long-term ecological measures, including certain fish stocks. Suc...
Article
Long-term data assembled from a power station on the Thames estuary were used to model fluctuations in the abundance of pogge (Agonus cataphractus) as a function of estuarine environmental, seasonal and prey availability variables using multiple regression. Temperature was the most important determinant of abundance, with seasonal variables and cha...
Article
Summary 1. In 1934, Adolf Remane constructed a diagram to describe changes in the number of species along a full salinity gradient within the Baltic. Despite fundamental differences in tidal regimes, the Baltic model has been applied directly to estuaries, becoming sub- sequently the textbook model for estuarine diversity trends. 2. Despite its ubi...
Article
Full-text available
Techniques for sampling motile macroinvertebrates associated with Posidonia oceanica seagrass meadows have mainly involved the use of hand-nets and suction samplers or collection by hand. These techniques give unreliable quantitative estimates or have practical difficulties. A large cylindrical saw-rimmed corer was designed and used successfully to...
Article
Samples taken regularly from the intake screens of West Thurrock power station between January 1977 and November 1992 were used to examine physico-chemical factors influencing the abundance of Gadidae species (poor cod, Trisopterus minutus; pouting, Trisopterus luscus; and whiting, Merlanguis merlangus) in the Thames estuary. Most sampled fish were...
Article
Full-text available
Macroalgae are major components of Atlantic shallow coral reef communities and potentially a major competitor with corals.This study investigates the spatial and seasonal distribution of macroalgal species, which includes fleshy algae, turf algae and some geniculate and non-geniculate corallines, on two inshore and one offshore reef from Porto Segu...
Article
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This study has described quantitatively the cnidarian community from the previously poorly-studied coastal emergent reef systems off Bahia, Brazil over a 4-yr period. Under normal environmental conditions, the community is remarkably stable, demonstrating very little variation between both reef systems and years. However, significant decreases in c...
Article
Latitudinal diversity gradients are a general feature of the terrestrial realm. Fewer studies have addressed marine habitats and those concerning soft sediments have not reported such consistent trends. This study investigates global patterns of macroinvertebrate -diversity in estuarine tidal flats. A literature search was conducted to collect data...
Article
Much recent work on patch-occupancy dynamics has been concentrated in terrestrial ecosystems, with few examples evident from soft-sediment marine habitats. Seagrass landscapes have recently been recognised to be potentially ideal marine models for the study of such ecological concepts. Infaunal macroinvertebrate assemblages of two patch sizes of th...
Article
Seagrass beds are thought to have a fundamental role in maintaining populations of commercially exploited fish and invertebrate species by providing one or more of the following: (1) a permanent habitat, allowing completion of the full life cycle, (2) a temporary nursery area for the successful development of the juvenile stages, (3) a feeding area...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Macroalgae are major components of Atlantic shallow coral reef communities and potentially a major competitor with corals. This study investigates the spatial and seasonal distribution of macroalgal species, which includes fleshy algae, turf algae and some geniculate and non-geniculate corallines, on two coastal and one offshore reef from Porto Seg...
Article
Full-text available
Coral reefs extend for 20 km along the north coast of the state of Bahia, Brazil. Over the last 15 years, this region has experienced an acceleration of generally unplanned urbanisation, with the irregular and indiscriminate use of septic tanks in urban centres contaminating the groundwater. This infiltration of nutrients and pathogens is facilitat...
Article
Full-text available
Between the years 1989 and 1992, severe drought conditions occurred in the Thames estuary catchment, significantly reducing freshwater flows into the estuary and affecting estuarine water quality. Long-term data assembled for water quality between 1977 and 1992 were combined with invertebrate abundance data obtained from the intake screens of West...
Article
Most herring Clupea harengus and sprat Sprattus sprattus sampled from West Thurrock power station intake screens, middle Thames estuary, between 1977 and 1992 were age-0 and followed regular patterns of seasonal occurrence. Juvenile herring entered the estuary in July, peaked in abundance November to March, and then declined. Juvenile sprat first a...
Article
Samples taken regularly from the intake screens of West Thurrock power station between January 1977 and November 1992 were used to investigate the factors controlling flatfish abundance (flounder: Platichthys flesus; dab: Limanda limanda; plaice: Pleuronectes platessa; sole: Solea solea) in the middle Thames estuary. Most sampled fish were age-0. A...
Article
Long-term data assembled for monitoring the water quality of the Thames estuary between 1977–1992 were used to examine the changing influences of physico-chemical variables on estuarine water quality during drought conditions. Seasonal and monthly means were computed and tested for significant differences. Time series data were used to estimate reg...
Article
Full-text available
A study was undertaken within a sub-tidal Zostera marina seagrass bed (Devon, U.K.), with the aim of elucidating the relationship between seagrass structural complexity and the size and composition of the associated macroinvertebrate community. Samples of macroinvertebrates were recovered from three designated areas of shoot density. Various physic...
Article
Rocas, the only atoll in the South Atlantic, is located 266 km off the northeast Brazilian coast. Spatial patterns in community structure of meiofauna, particularly nematodes, and macrofauna were examined along a transect through the sediment path from windward to leeward of the Rocas Atoll sand flat. Differences in benthic community structure betw...
Article
Full-text available
In order to evaluate the power of laboratory toxicity tests to predict the situation in the field, soil microarthropods were studied at the population and community levels in a copper contaminated field, and data were compared to the outcome of single species laboratory tests in the same soil type from a companion study. In addition to copper, the...