About this Research Topic
Obtaining realistic predictions of how existing and emerging anthropogenic stressors (e.g. climate change, contaminants, noise and artificial light) affect our natural environment and the organisms living therein is essential to provide the management tools necessary to mitigate threats to ecosystems. Whilst the basic idea is straightforward, attaining reliable estimates on the fate of ecosystems has proved to be notoriously challenging and, to date, has not provided the means to reliably tackle ongoing declines in biodiversity. Historically, scientific studies have focused on single anthropogenic stressors and ecosystems compartments. This disconnection limits our ability to generalize and predict ecosystem responses, as it is increasingly recognized that multiple anthropogenic stressors can interact both synergistically and antagonistically, and that anthropogenic pressures can resonate beyond the boundaries of single ecosystems. This Research Topic therefore aims to unite and synthesize research that addresses the combined impact of various stressors (e.g. chemical, light and noise pollution, temperature variation, invasive species etc. – on different levels of ecological complexity), as well as research that considers the propagation of stressors across ecosystem boundaries (whether aquatic/terrestrial, freshwater/marine, stream/lake, benthic/pelagic or others).
This Research Topic will bring the emerging field of Stress Ecology up to date. Contributions are welcome from all levels of biological organization. This includes (but is not limited to): prokaryotes and eukaryotes, genetic/molecular and sub-cellular, individual, population, community and ecosystem spatial scales and evolutionary time scales. Any habitat, terrestrial, freshwater or marine, is considered relevant to assist in obtaining a good overview of the current state of Stress Ecology. It is also important to understand Stress Ecology at multiple organizational, spatial and temporal scales. Contributions addressing the consequences of stressor-induced alterations in the community composition of prey and predator organisms on horizontal (within a trophic level) and vertical (across trophic levels) interactions within food webs under stress are invited. Studies using controlled experimental approaches (e.g. factorial designs) that further the mechanistic understanding of stressors’ interactions or correlational field studies are welcome. We also welcome studies using new tools, whether they utilize novel field or experimental approaches, or theory/modeling approaches to address these questions with the goal of achieving a better understanding of multiple stressors on our environment.
Keywords: Stress Ecology, Mixture Toxicity, Environmental Realism, Pesticides, Metals, Anthropogenic Stressors, Monitoring, Nutrients, Climate Change, Plastics, Biodiversity, Ecosystems
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.