Frank E. Muller-Karger's research while affiliated with University of South Florida St. Petersburg and other places

Publications (98)

Article
People depend on biodiversity—the heart of healthy ecosystems—in many ways and every day of our lives. Yet usable knowledge of marine life is a missing link in the way we have designed marine observing and information systems. We lack critical biodiversity information to inform sustainable development from local levels to global scales—information...
Article
Marine Life 2030 is a programme endorsed by the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (the Ocean Decade) to establish a globally coordinated system that delivers knowledge of ocean life to those who need it, promoting human well-being, sustainable development, and ocean conservation. It is an open network to unite exist...
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We examine the main drivers that may elevate biomass and biodiversity of non-chemosynthetic benthic megafauna of the lower bathyal (800-3500m depth) of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge in the North Atlantic Ocean (MAR). Specifically: 1. Primary production in surface waters (10°-48°N) from remote sensing data 2002-2020 over the MAR was not significantly diffe...
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Accurate and up-to-date maps of coastal bathymetry are fundamental for coastal resource management, commercial and military navigation, and aquaculture, among many applications. Existing methods for bathymetry mapping require intensive and costly field surveys or targeted aerial captures, neither of which are easily or affordably replicated for rep...
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VALIDATION OF A HYBRID EVAPOTRANSPIRATION MODEL USING SATELLITE IMAGERY AND PRECIPITATION-FLOW DATA RAONI WAINER DUARTE BOSQUILIA1; CHRISTOPHER MICHAEL USHER NEALE2; SERGIO NASCIMENTO DUARTE3; SILVIO FROSINI DE BARROS FERRAZ3; PEDRO PAULO DA SILVA BARROS4 AND FRANK EDGAR MULLER-KARGER5 1 Federal Technological University of Paraná (UTFPR), Dois Vizi...
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Maintaining healthy, productive ecosystems in the face of pervasive and accelerating human impacts including climate change requires globally coordinated and sustained observations of marine biodiversity. Global coordination is predicated on an understanding of the scope and capacity of existing monitoring programs, and the extent to which they use...
Article
Located at an interface between water and land, wetlands are complex ecosystems, which are important for the maintenance of biodiversity. The objective of this work was to evaluate five different optical satellite imagery with different spatial resolution (original: RapidEye – 5 m; Sentinel-2B – 10 m; Landsat 8–30 m; resampled: RapidEye – 30 m; Sen...
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Sea-level rise is impacting the longest undeveloped stretch of coastline in the contiguous United States: The Florida Big Bend. Due to its low elevation and a higher-than-global-average local rate of sea-level rise, the region is losing coastal forest to encroaching marsh at an unprecedented rate. Previous research found a rate of forest-to-marsh c...
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Successful management and mitigation of marine challenges depends on cooperation and knowledge sharing which often occurs across culturally diverse geographic regions. Global ocean science collaboration is therefore essential for developing global solutions. Building effective global research networks that can enable collaboration also need to ensu...
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The Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) was established to promote and provide guidance toward a global observation network on biodiversity and ecosystems for decision makers and the scientific community. Here we comment on three key challenges in the development and implementation of monitoring schemes and indica...
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Plain Language Summary Understanding the oceanic cycles of carbon and other elements important for life, as well as how ocean life influences the Earth's climate, we must understand how the carbon fixed by phytoplankton during photosynthesis is consumed and redistributed throughout the ocean. How much carbon is fixed at a given place and time varie...
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Monitoring global biodiversity from space through remotely sensing geospatial patterns has high potential to add to our knowledge acquired by field observation. Although a framework of essential biodiversity variables (EBVs) is emerging for monitoring biodiversity, its poor alignment with remote sensing products hinders interpolation between field...
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Recent advances in molecular sequencing technology and the increased availability of fieldable laboratory equipment have provided researchers with the opportunity to conduct real-time or near real-time gene-based biodiversity assessments of aquatic ecosystems. In this study, we developed a workflow and portable kit for fieldable environmental DNA s...
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National Academies' Decadal Survey, Thriving on Our Changing Planet, recommended Surface Biology and Geology (SBG) as a "Designated Targeted Observable" (DO). The SBG DO is based on the need for capabilities to acquire global, high spatial resolution, visible to shortwave infrared (VSWIR; 380-2500 nm; ~30 m pixel resolution) hyperspectral (imaging...
Article
Environmental conditions influence fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) levels, which are routinely used to characterize recreational water quality. This study examined 15 years of environmental and FIB data at Puntarenas and Jacó beach, Costa Rica. FIB relationships with sea level, wave height, precipitation, direct normal irradiance (DNI), wind, and tu...
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Marine hard-bottom communities are undergoing severe change under the influence of multiple drivers, notably climate change, extraction of natural resources, pollution and eutrophication, habitat degradation, and invasive species. Monitoring marine biodiversity in such habitats is, however, challenging as it typically involves expensive, non-standa...
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Wetlands are the second-most valuable natural resource on Earth but have declined by approximately 70 % since 1900. Restoration and conservation efforts have succeeded in some areas through establishment of refuges where anthropogenic impacts are minimized. However, these areas are still prone to wetland damage caused by natural disasters. Severe s...
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Physical, chemical, geological, and biological factors interact in marine environments to shape complex but recurrent patterns of organization of life on multiple spatial and temporal scales. These factors define biogeographic regions in surface waters that we refer to as seascapes. We characterize seascapes for the Florida Keys National Marine San...
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The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) strengthens the science-policy interface by producing scientific assessments on biodiversity and ecosystem services to inform policy. IPBES fosters knowledge exchange across disciplines, between researchers and other knowledge holders, practitioners, societ...
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In this paper we outline the stakeholder-led approaches in the development of biological data products to support effective conservation, management and policy development. The requirements of a broad range of stakeholders and iterative, structured processes framed the development of tools, models and maps that support the FAIR (Findable, Accessibl...
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In September of 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall within the Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve of southwest Florida (USA) as a category 3 storm with winds in excess of 200 km h-1. We mapped the extent of the hurricane’s impact on coastal land cover with a seasonal time series of satellite imagery. Very high-resolution (i.e. <5 meter...
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A chemoautotrophy maximum is present in many anoxic basins at the sulfidic layer's upper boundary, but the factors controlling this feature are poorly understood. In 13 of 31 cruises to the Cariaco Basin, particulate organic carbon (POC) was enriched in 13C (δ13CPOC as high as −16‰) within the oxic/sulfidic transition compared to photic zone values...
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Environmental DNA (eDNA) analysis allows the simultaneous examination of organisms across multiple trophic levels and domains of life, providing critical information about the complex biotic interactions related to ecosystem change. Here we used multilocus amplicon sequencing of eDNA to survey biodiversity from an eighteen-month (2015–2016) time-se...
Article
It is known that the soil type and its characteristics are very important to the agriculture and to maintain the health of a forest. Thus, the objective of this work was to verify, through multivariate statistical analysis techniques, the variations of evapotranspiration values as a function of the soil type in three different vegetation cover area...
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Lithogenic sediment input to the Cariaco Basin on the eastern Venezuelan shelf is controlled by small mountainous rivers (SMRs). The Cariaco Basin is also an area of high phytoplankton productivity as a result of strong Trade Wind‐driven coastal upwelling. Characterizing the sources that supply particulate organic carbon (POC) to the deep Cariaco B...
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Ocean colour is recognised as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV) by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS); and spectrally-resolved water-leaving radiances (or remote-sensing reflectances) in the visible domain, and chlorophyll-a concentration are identified as required ECV products. Time series of the products at the global scale and at high...
Article
Remotely sensed and in situ data, in tandem with numerical modeling, are used to explore the causes of an episode of localized but severe mortality of corals, sponges, and other invertebrates at the Flower Garden Banks (FGB) National Marine Sanctuary in July 2016. At about 190 km off the Texas coast, at the top the seamount in the East FGB, up to 8...
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The need for improved access to ocean observations for Pacific Island countries (PICs) and territories has been increasingly recognized over the last decade, particularly in the face of a changing climate. Although more remote sensing and in situ data are available than ever before, however, oceanographic, and marine forecasting expertise in the re...
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The diversity of life in the sea is critical to the health of ocean ecosystems that support living resources and therefore essential to the economic, nutritional, recreational, and health needs of billions of people. Yet there is evidence that the biodiversity of many marine habitats is being altered in response to a changing climate and human acti...
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Development of global ocean observing capacity for the biological EOVs is on the cusp of a step-change. Current capacity to automate data collection and processing and to integrate the resulting data streams with complementary data, openly available as FAIR data, is certain to dramatically increase the amount and quality of information and knowledg...
Article
Youth have astute observations about site-specific personal and environmental factors that contribute to littering and marine debris, and they have a strong potential to act as change agents in communities. Interactions with youth in Pinellas County Florida add insights into a growing body of research on environmental education and marine debris pr...
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In coastal waters around the world, the dominant primary producers are benthic macrophytes, including seagrasses and macroalgae, that provide habitat structure and food for diverse and abundant biological communities and drive ecosystem processes. Seagrass meadows and macroalgal forests play key roles for coastal societies, contributing to fishery...
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The oceans play a key role in global issues such as climate change, food security, and human health. Given their vast dimensions and internal complexity, efficient monitoring and predicting of the planet’s ocean must be a collaborative effort of both regional and global scale. A first and foremost requirement for such collaborative ocean observing...
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The Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service (CMEMS) provides regular and systematic reference information on the physical and biogeochemical ocean and sea-ice state for the global ocean and the European regional seas. CMEMS serves a wide range of users (more than 15,000 users are now registered to the service) and applications. Observation...
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In Fiji, like most Pacific Island countries, there have been numerous reports of degradation of coastal resources, including adverse changes in abundance and stock distribution of numerous aquatic species associated with the coastal habitat. To develop effective management plans, assessment of existing coastal resources is pertinent. High spatial r...
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The cross-shelf advection of coastal waters into the deep Gulf of Mexico is important for the transport of nutrients or potential pollutants. Twenty years of ocean color satellite imagery document such cross-shelf transport events via three export pathways in the Gulf of Mexico: from the Campeche Bank toward the central Gulf, from the Campeche Bank...
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Species distributions and abundances are undergoing rapid changes worldwide. This highlights the significance of reliable, integrated information for guiding and assessing actions and policies aimed at managing and sustaining the many functions and benefits of species. Here we synthesize the types of data and approaches that are required to achieve...
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The benefits nature provides to people, called ecosystem services, are increasingly recognized and accounted for in assessments of infrastructure development, agricultural management, conservation prioritization, and sustainable sourcing. These assessments are often limited by data, however, a gap with tremendous potential to be filled through Eart...
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The northern Gulf of Mexico (GoM) is a region strongly influenced by river discharges of freshwater and nutrients, which promote a highly productive coastal ecosystem that host commercially valuable marine species. A variety of climate and weather processes could potentially influence the river discharges into the northern GoM. However, their impac...
Chapter
Assessment of the risks due to exposure and sensitivity of coastal communities to coastal flooding is essential for informed decision-making. Strategies for public understanding and awareness of the tangible effects of climate change are fundamental in developing policy options. A multidisciplinary, multinational team of natural and social scientis...
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Coastal ecosystems throughout the world are increasingly vulnerable to degradation as a result of accelerating sea-level rise and saltwater intrusion, more frequent and powerful extreme weather events, and anthropogenic impacts. Hardwood swamp forests in the Big Bend region of Florida’s Gulf of Mexico coast (USA) are largely devoid of the latter, b...
Preprint
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Assessment of the risks due to exposure and sensitivity of coastal communities to coastal flooding is essential for informed decision-making. Strategies for public understanding and awareness of the tangible effects of climate change are fundamental in developing policy options. A multidisciplinary, multinational team of natural and social scientis...
Article
Predicting recreational water quality is key to protecting public health from exposure to wastewater-associated pathogens. It is not feasible to monitor recreational waters for all pathogens; therefore, monitoring programs use fecal indicator bacteria (FIB), such as enterococci, to identify wastewater pollution. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) we...
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An investigation of public support for coastal adaptation options and public finance options in Florida evaluated stakeholder judgments and how they changed through a participatory engagement process. The study found that public finance mechanisms that imposed fiscal burdens on those who directly benefit from hazard reduction were rated as more acc...
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Developing enduring capacity to monitor ocean life requires investing in people and their institutions to build infrastructure, ownership, and long-term support networks. International initiatives can enhance access to scientific data, tools and methodologies, and develop local expertise to use them, but without ongoing engagement may fail to have...
Conference Paper
We report on a series of use cases underway to augment and test the viability of the global Ecological Marine Units (EMUs). EMUs were commissioned in 2015 by the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) as a means of developing a standardized and practical global ecosystems classification and map for the oceans. They are a key outcome for the GEO Biodiver...