Paradigm misplaced? Antarctic marine ecosystems are affected by climate change as well as biological processes and harvesting
A recent review by Ainley et al. has suggested that recent investigations of the ecological structure and processes of the Southern Ocean have “almost exclusively taken a bottom-up, forcing-by-physical-processes approach relating individual species' population trends to climate change”. We examine this suggestion and conclude that, in fact, there has been considerable research effort into ecosystem interactions over the last 25 years, particularly through research associated with management of the living resources of the Southern Ocean. Future Southern Ocean research will make progress only when integrated studies are planned around well structured hypotheses that incorporate both the physical and biological drivers of ecosystem processes.