About this Research Topic
Marine ecosystems are changing caused e.g. by warming surface water, increasing CO2 concentration and eutrophication. The direct effects of these changes have been studied for decades. Much less is known about possible indirect effects these changes have.
The plankton community makes up the base of the marine food web (i.e. primary producers, decomposers and primary consumers) and plays a pivotal role in global biogeochemical cycles. Any change in the plankton community structure caused by global change may thus cause indirect effect to cycling of organic matter (e.g. biological carbon pump and trophic transfer). This research topic focuses on causes, effects and consequences of a changing plankton community composition, which can be broken down into a set of sub-topics:
1) observed functional shifts in plankton communities
2) effects and consequences of shifting planktonic community structure
3) approaches and methods to detect functional shifts in plankton
4) using plankton function types in ecosystem models to investigating changes in plankton communities
5) incorporating plankton functional traits into ecosystem models
6) moving forward with a unified trait database
We are welcoming all papers that address at least 2 of the 6 points.
Keywords: Ecosystem functioning, biogeochemical cycles, functional traits, community composition, ecosystem modeling
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.