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Project finished in 2014


A general approach to Species-Abundance relationships in a context of global change, reef fish species as a model

The GASPAR program initially aimed at analyzing the relationships between diversity and abundance across a range of scales and environmental factors, taking into account the life-history traits of organisms. The model organisms were coral reef fish.
The program first built a data base on the global distribution of tropical reef fish, based on 170 checklists. For each of the 6300 species information on 7 life-history traits were also collected, and for the site of each checklist environmental data was extracted from existing international data bases. Based on the global distribution of reef fish species GASPARdefined biogeographical regions divided into biogeographical provinces. Next the experts modeled the global distribution of reef fish diversity, showing that the most important factors were biogeographical region, reef area, coastal length, isolation and SST, explaining 80% of the variance.
The analysis of life-history traits indicated that the global distribution of ecological functional groups was very similar from one region to the next, thus suggesting a similar functioning of coral reef fish assemblages across the world. Despite this global structure, the number of species per functional group changed across regions, with an overlap between regions with low species diversity and low functional redundancy (i.e. the number of species/functional group). Low redundancy was associated to rarity, most rare species belonging to mono-specific functional groups. Fishing changes significantly the relative importance of functional groups within assemblages. 



Michel KULBICKI – IRD (France)



Valeriano PARRAVICINI – IRD (France)

ouvrir/fermer Participants:

Ernesto ARIAS-GONZALES- University of Merida (Mexico); Pascale CHABANET – IRD La Réunion (France); David MOUILLOT – University of Montpellier (France); David James BELLWOOD – Cook University (Australia); Tim MacCLANAHAN – WCS Mombassa (Kenya); Alan FRIEDLANDER – University of Hawaii (Hawaii USA); Sergio FLOETER – University of Santa Catalina (Brazil); Laurent VIGLIOLA – IRD New-Caledonia (France); Jana McPHERSON – University of Vancouver (Canada).

GASPAR brings together experts in coral reef ecology, fish ecology, macroecology, fisheries management, statistics and modelling.


GASPAR was selected from the 2010 call for proposals. The project selection process was carried out by a committee of independent experts


[29] Parravicini V, Bender MG, Villéger S, Leprieur F, Pellissier L, Donati FGA, Floeter SR, Rezende EL, Mouillot D & Kulbicki M (2021) Coral reef fishes reveal strong divergence in the prevalence of traits along the global diversity gradient. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 288, 20211712. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2021.1712.


[28] Yancovitch Shalom H, Granot I, Blowes SA, Friedlander AM, Mellin C, Leite Ferreira CE, Arias-González JE, Kulbicki M, Floeter SR, Chabanet P, Parravicini V & Belmaker J (2020) A closer examination of the 'abundant center' hypothesis for reef fishes. Journal of Biogeography, 47, 2194–2209. DOI: 10.1111/jbi.13920.


[27] Kulbicki M, Friedlander AM, Mouillot D & Parravicini V (2018) Geographic variation in the composition and function of parrotfishes. In: Hoey A, Bellwood DR & Bonaldo R (Eds.), The Biology and Ecology of Parrotfishes, CRC Press/Taylor & Francis Group, Boca Raton, FL, USA (pp. 215–244). DOI: 10.1201/9781315118079.


[26] Bender MG, Leprieur F, Mouillot D, Kulbicki M, Parravicini V, Pie MR, Barneche DR, Oliveira-Santos LGR & Floeter SR (2017) Isolation drives taxonomic and functional nestedness in tropical reef fish faunas. Ecography, 40, 425–435. DOI: 10.1111/ecog.02293.


[25] Jacquet C, Mouillot D, Kulbicki M & Gravel D (2017) Extensions of Island Biogeography Theory predict the scaling of functional trait composition with habitat area and isolation. Ecology Letters, 20, 135–146. DOI: 10.1111/ele.12716.


[24] Ottimofiore E, Albouy C, Leprieur F, Descombes P, Kulbicki M, Mouillot D, Parravicini V & Pellissier L (2017) Responses of coral reef fishes to past climate changes are related to life-history traits. Ecology and Evolution, 7, 1996–2005. DOI: 10.1002/ece3.2800.


[23] Barneche DR, Kulbicki M, Floeter SR, Friedlander AM & Allen AP (2016) Energetic and ecological constraints on population density of reef fishes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 283, 20152186. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2015.2186.


[22] D'agata S, Mouillot D, Wantiez L, Friedlander AM, Kulbicki M & Vigliola L (2016) Marine reserves lag behind wilderness in the conservation of key functional roles. Nature Communications, 7, 12000–12009. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms12000.


[21] D'agata S, Vigliola L, Graham NAJ, Wantiez L, Parravicini V, Villéger S, Mou-Tham G, Frolla P, Friedlander AM, Kulbicki M & Mouillot D (2016) Unexpected high vulnerability of functions in wilderness areas: evidence from coral reef fishes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 283, 20160128. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2016.0128.


[20] Leprieur F, Colosio S, Descombes P, Parravicini V, Kulbicki M, Cowman PF, Bellwood DR, Mouillot D & Pellissier L (2016) Historical and contemporary determinants of global phylogenetic structure in tropical reef fish faunas. Ecography, 39, 825–835. DOI: 10.1111/ecog.01638.


[19] Leprieur F, Descombes P, Gaboriau T, Cowman PF, Parravicini V, Kulbicki M, Melian CJ, de Santana CN, Heine C, Mouillot D, Bellwood DR & Pellissier L (2016) Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics. Nature Communications, 7, 11461–11468. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms11461.


[18] Mellin C, Mouillot D, Kulbicki M, McClanahan TR, Vigliola L, Bradshaw CJA, Brainard RE, Chabanet P, Edgar GJ, Fordham DA, Friedlander AM, Parravicini V, Sequeira AMM, Stuart-Smith RD, Wantiez L & Caley MJ (2016) Humans and seasonal climate variability threaten large-bodied coral reef fish with small ranges. Nature Communications, 7, 10491–10499. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms10491.


[17] Mouillot D, Parravicini V, Bellwood DR, Leprieur F, Huang D, Cowman PF, Albouy C, Hughes TP, Thuiller W & Guilhaumon F (2016) Global marine protected areas do not secure the evolutionary history of tropical corals and fishes. Nature Communications, 7, 10359–10366. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms10359.


[16] Descombes P, Wisz MS, Leprieur F, Parravicini V, Heine C, Olsen SM, Swingedouw D, Kulbicki M, Mouillot D & Pellissier L (2015) Forecasted coral reef decline in marine biodiversity hotspots under climate change. Global Change Biology, 21, 2479–2487. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12868.


[15] Kulbicki M, Parravicini V & Mouillot D (2015) Patterns and processes in reef fish body size. In: Mora C (Eds.), Ecology of Fishes on Coral Reefs, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK (pp. 104–115). DOI: 10.1017/CBO9781316105412.013.


[14] Parravicini V, Azzurro E, Kulbicki M & Belmaker J (2015) Niche shift can impair the ability to predict invasion risk in the marine realm: An illustration using Mediterranean fish invaders. Ecology Letters, 18, 246–253. DOI: 10.1111/ele.12401.


[13] Barneche DR, Kulbicki M, Floeter SR, Friedlander AM, Maina J & Allen AP (2014) Scaling metabolism from individuals to reef-fish communities at broad spatial scales. Ecology Letters, 17, 1067–1076. DOI: 10.1111/ele.12309.


[12] D'agata S, Mouillot D, Kulbicki M, Andréfouët S, Bellwood DR, Cinner JE, Cowman PF, Kronen M, Pinca S & Vigliola L (2014) Human-mediated loss of phylogenetic and functional diversity in coral reef fishes. Current Biology, 24, 555–560. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.01.049.


[11] Mouillot D, Villéger S, Parravicini V, Kulbicki M, Arias-González JE, Bender MG, Chabanet P, Floeter SR, Friedlander AM, Vigliola L & Bellwood DR (2014) Functional over-redundancy and high functional vulnerability in global fish faunas on tropical reefs. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111, 13757–13762. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1317625111.


[10] Parravicini V, Villéger S, McClanahan TR, Arias-González JE, Bellwood DR, Belmaker J, Chabanet P, Floeter SR, Friedlander AM, Guilhaumon F, Vigliola L, Kulbicki M & Mouillot D (2014) Global mismatch between species richness and vulnerability of reef fish assemblages. Ecology Letters, 17, 1101–1110. DOI: 10.1111/ele.12316.


[09] Pellissier L, Leprieur F, Parravicini V, Cowman PF, Kulbicki M, Litsios G, Olsen SM, Wisz MS, Bellwood DR & Mouillot D (2014) Quaternary coral reef refugia preserved fish diversity. Science, 344, 1016–1019. DOI: 10.1126/science.1249853.


[08] Stier AC, Hein AM, Parravicini V & Kulbicki M (2014) Larval dispersal drives trophic structure across Pacific coral reefs. Nature Communications, 5, 5575–5578. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms6575.


[07] Belmaker J, Parravicini V & Kulbicki M (2013) Ecological traits and environmental affinity explain Red Sea fish introduction into the Mediterranean. Global Change Biology, 19, 1373–1382. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12132.


[06] Bender MG, Pie MR, Rezende EL, Mouillot D & Floeter SR (2013) Biogeographic, historical and environmental influences on the taxonomic and functional structure of Atlantic reef fish assemblages. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 22, 1173–1182. DOI: 10.1111/geb.12099.


[05] Kulbicki M, Parravicini V, Bellwood DR, Arias-González JE, Chabanet P, Floeter SR, Friedlander AM, McPherson J, Myers RE, Vigliola L & Mouillot D (2013) Global biogeography of reef fishes: A hierarchical quantitative delineation of regions. PLoS ONE, 8, e81847. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0081847.


[04] Luiz OJ, Allen AP, Robertson DR, Floeter SR, Kulbicki M, Vigliola L, Becheler R & Madin JS (2013) Adult and larval traits as determinants of geographic range size among tropical reef fishes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110, 16498–16502. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1304074110.


[03] Mouillot D, Bellwood DR, Baraloto C, Chave J, Galzin R, Harmelin-Vivien M, Kulbicki M, Lavergne S, Lavorel S, Mouquet N, Paine CET, Renaud J & Thuiller W (2013) Rare species support vulnerable functions in high-diversity ecosystems. PLoS Biology, 11, e1001569. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001569.


[02] Mouillot D, de Bortoli J, Leprieur F, Parravicini V, Kulbicki M & Bellwood DR (2013) The challenge of delineating biogeographical regions: Nestedness matters for Indo-Pacific coral reef fishes. Journal of Biogeography, 40, 2228–2237. DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12194.


[01] Parravicini V, Kulbicki M, Bellwood DR, Friedlander AM, Arias-González JE, Chabanet P, Floeter SR, Myers RE, Vigliola L, D'agata S & Mouillot D (2013) Global patterns and predictors of tropical reef fish species richness. Ecography, 36, 1254–1262. DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0587.2013.00291.x.