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Social-Ecological Systems Meta-Analysis Database: Variables

Variable TypeOrdinal
Variable Component TypeEnvironmental Common
Variable KindComponent
ThemeKnowledge and uncertainty (learn about themes)
ProjectsSESMAD
QuestionHow predictable is the availability or prevalence of this commons within years?
Select Options1 Low, 2 Moderate, 3 High
Unit
Role
ImportanceIntra-annual predictability affects the extent to which resource users and/or managers can have an understanding of biophysical dynamics and thus plan for their management within a year. Greater certainty (or more predictability) increases the likelihood that actors manage their resources sustainably.
Definition

"The extent to which it is possible to predict the availability of a resource within a given year. Generally forms an inverse relationship with the level of uncertainty across months and/or seasons. Low: Within year variation does not follow a discernible pattern High: Within year variation is low or follows a known pattern"

Sectors

Theory Usages

TheoryValue Used
Uncertainty and depletion of natural resourcesLow
TranshumanceLow
Common property quotas Low

Component Usages

ComponentValue UsedExplanation
Galapagos Sea CucumberHigh (3)With no fishing, little variation in numbers within a given year Density-dependent for reproduction - and density required is unknown.
Western Atlantic Bluefin Tuna High (3)There is little seasonal variation in resource availability.
Forests in IndonesiaHigh (3)Like most forests, there is little intrannual change in the prevalence of the forest, although some specific non-timber forest products are seasonal. As with inter-annual predictability, forest fires, which are not fully predictable, may affect the availability of this commons unexpectedly.
Tigris watershed 
OzoneHigh (3)
Ozone Depleting SubstancesHigh (3)
Rhine Point source pollutantsModerate (2)Pollution by the chemical industry can be moderately predicted in the mid-term by the economic activity of the industry and the nation in general.
Eastern Atlantic Bluefin TunaHigh (3)Very little variation in resource numbers within a given year.
Rhine Non-point source pollutantsModerate (2)Pollution by the agricultural sector (main source of diffuse pollution) can be moderately predicted in the mid-term by the economic activity of the sector and the nation in general.
GBR coral coverHigh (3)
fish 
GBR target fish 
GBR target fishModerate (2)
NWHI Lobster FisheryModerate (2)
Macquarie Island Royal PenguinHigh (3)There is little variation in population within years.
Wakatobi coral coverHigh (3)
Light Mantled AlbatrossMissingNot enough information to assess intra annual predictability.
Walt's forest 
Wakatobi fish spawningModerate (2)
Galapagos Green TurtleModerate (2)Availability varies according to season, but these patterns can be predicted. Also population sizes don't fluctuate too much in relation environmental factors.
Salmon 
Wakatobi Green TurtleModerate (2)Availability varies according to season, but these patterns can be predicted. Also population sizes don't fluctuate too much in relation environmental factors.
NWHI Trophic DensityModerate (2)
NWHI Green TurtleModerate (2)Availability varies according to season, but these patterns can be predicted. Also population sizes don't fluctuate too much in relation environmental factors.
Raja Ampat Reef Fish Moderate (2)
Raja Ampat Coral CoverHigh (3)
Raja Ampat Green TurtleModerate (2)Availability varies according to season, but these patterns can be predicted. Also population sizes don't fluctuate too much in relation environmental factors.
Galapagos SharksModerate (2)Similar intra-annual patterns between hammerheads, whale, and Galapagos sharks in northern bioregion: greater abundance in cooler months of the year (May-October). In warmers months abundance is greatly reduced.
California Rocky Shores Ecosystem HealthHigh (3)Fairly constant populations in a well studied ecosystem. Physical habitat always there (rocks along shore), difference is population composition. Seasonality has been observed in species population trends in the rocky shore habitats, leading to more predictability (Horn et. al 1983; Foster et al. 1988, 1991).
Seaflower groupersModerate (2)Groupers are long lived species and have relatively high site fidelity.
Seaflower coral reefsHigh (3)Once established, coral reefs are quite stable and predictable within years
Svalbard ShrimpHigh (3)
Svalbard BelugaLow (1)Apart from one telemetry study (Lyderson et al 2001), which indicates that belugas remain close to the coasts, it is difficult to predict where pods will be observed at any particular time.
Svalbard Polar BearHigh (3)The seasonal patterns of the polar bear are reasonably predictable, although may vary according to the weather and sea-ice conditions. Bears hibernate during the polar winter and emerge in the spring. Lønø (1970) observes that females generally enter their dens in November/December, and emerge in April.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Southern Right WhaleModerate (2)Southern right whales are a migratory species and the movements of males, non-breeding females and sub-adults are less understood than breeding females. Finding a southern right whale at any one point during the summer months when whale migration is occurring is not guaranteed. However, female whales and their calves are observed frequently from the cliffs at the Head of Bight in the near shore waters of southern Australian during the winter months.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Southern Bluefin TunaHigh (3)The availability or prevalence of this commons is predictable within years - there is little seasonal variation in commons availability.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) BenthosMissing
Cenderwasih target fishModerate (2)
Cenderwasih coral coverHigh (3)
California Groundfish HabitatLow (1)Forecasts for stock size and catch are completed for future years, instead of within years. However, seasonality of fish allows for some predictability. For example, Pacific whiting is not expected in January, but would be expected in April through June (PFMC 2015). Other species such as petrel sole and other flatfish migrate seasonally from spending the winter spawning in deep water (November–February) to spending the summer in shallow water while they feed summer (March–October) (Fishwatch, 2015). However, within a year, the size of the population is not as well forecasted as for future years, but quotas are measured throughout the year to assess fishing pressure.
California Humpback WhaleModerate (2)The time of year for humpbacks to exist in Sanctuary waters is expected (April to December), but sometimes migration is a little later or early (as was in 2014).
King PenguinHigh (3)Colony location and breeding life cycle is well known for King Penguins. Their foraging ecology has been extensively studied and is strongly dependent on the frontal zone features, especially the Antarctic Polar Front. Because of their unusual breeding life cycle (the longest of all seabirds, lasting more than a year), there are always penguins at the colony, even though the laying period is asynchronous and has considerable variation between breeding sites and years (Bost et al. 2013 and references therein).
GBR Green TurtleModerate (2)Turtles typically arrive at nesting grounds around the same time each year, and show strong site fidelity by returning to the same beach to nest (Limpus et al 2003). Predictability of turtle locations during the rest of the year is less predictable.
Cenderwasih green turtleModerate (2)Availability varies according to season, but these patterns can be predicted. Also population sizes don't fluctuate too much in relation environmental factors.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Sea LionModerate (2)Duration of pupping season varies between colonies (from 5 - 8 months) - complicate assessing abundance (Shaughnessy et al. 2011)
Patagonian Toothfish Low (1)Note that most toothfish fisheries operate in a limited window of time (usually over the course of a few months), thus the scientific information on toothfish is largely based on an annual snapshot with very little information gathered about toothfish during the rest of the year. As a result, there are still major gaps in the life history knowledge of toothfish. For example, for many populations, their reproductive and spawning cycle (which usually happens in the winter between June and September, while some fisheries only operate in the summer) is not well understood. For some populations of toothfish, their reproductive cycle involves spawning migrations and there is increasing evidence that mature individuals may not spawn every year (i.e. exhibiting skip spawning). Despite these gaps in their intrannual cycle, tag-recapture studies suggest that most toothfish stay close by to where they were caught (e.g., in the HIMI fishery 99% of recaptured tagged fish were caught within 30km of where they were first caught and tagged 1-3 years prior), some individual fish travel great distances (e.g., in the HIMI fishery, some fish traveled up to 1850 km from where they were caught; see Collins et al. 2010 and references therein).
Svalbard KittiwakeHigh (3)Little variation within years http://www.mosj.no/en/fauna/marine/black-legged-kittiwake.html
California market squid (Loligo opalescens)Moderate (2)Recruitment surveys help inform, but not always accurate.
Patagonian squid (Loligo gahi)Moderate (2)The fishery is managed according to real time assessment of stock size. Data is collected from fishery participants. While not perfect, a number of models and environmental monitoring have been successful in maintaing spawner escapement. In-season monitoring continues because environmental conditions and other factors (e.g. new predators) changes availability.
New Zealand Sea Lion 
Arrow Squid (Nototodarus spp.)Low (1)Weak assessment, but generally can tell early on if going to be a good year. There are models for such prediction, but they are fairly new and have not been proven successful.