1

People and ecosystems

Understanding of the links between coral reef ecosystems, the goods and services they provide to people, and the wellbeing of human societies.

2

Ecosystem dynamics: past, present and future

Examining the multi-scale dynamics of reefs, from population dynamics to macroevolution

3

Responding to a changing world

Advancing the fundamental understanding of the key processes underpinning reef resilience.

Coral Bleaching

Coral Bleaching

Coral Reef Studies

ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies
James Cook University Townsville
Queensland 4811 Australia

Phone: 61 7 4781 4000
Email: info@coralcoe.org.au

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David Bellwood

David Bellwood


Professor and Chief Investigator


Distinguished Professor (2015-Present) Professor (2003-2015) Associate Professor (1999-2003), Senior Lecturer (1995-98), Lecturer (1991–94), Senior Research Fellow (1991), Research Associate (1988-91) Marine Biology Department, J.C.U. ; Post- doctoral consultant (1986) Silliman University, Philippines; Assistant Scientific Officer (1979) British Museum (Nat. Hist.), London, UK; Assistant Scientific Officer (1978) MAFF Fisheries, Lowestoft, UK.


BSc Bath • PhD James Cook University


James Cook University



+61 (0)7 4781 5729


Bellwood Lab Website

Research Interests

My research centres on the ecology of fishes on coral reefs. The major emphasis is on the functional capabilities of fishes, their evolutionary history and the role of fishes in ecosystem function.

The general approach is ecomorphological, examining the relationship between functional morphology and ecology. The work is based on behavioural observations in the field, morphological analyses in the laboratory and behavioural/functional studies in aquaria.

This approach has been applied to a wide range of questions from the swimming abilities of fish larvae to feeding by wrasses and parrotfishes. This work is taken a step further to look at the evolution if fishes on coral reefs by direct examination of the fossil record, and using molecular phylogenetic approaches to examine evolutionary changes within specific groups.

Differences in the functional abilities of fishes and fish assemblages are examined in a biogeographic context, to evaluate the role of fishes in reef ecosystem function across broad biogeographic ranges. The current focus in on Caribbean – Great Barrier Reef comparisons.

 

Selected Publications

[1]  Bellwood, DR, Goatley, CHR and Bellwood, O (2016). “The evolution of fishes and corals on reefs: form, function and interdependence.” Biological Reviews DOI: 10.1111/brv.12259
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[2]  Goatley, CHR, Bonaldo, RM, Fox, RJ and Bellwood, DR (2016). “Sediments and herbivory as sensitive indicators of coral reef degradation.” Ecology and Society 21: 29.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[3] Bellwood, DR, Goatley, CHR, Bellwood, O, Delbarre, DJ and Friedman, M (2015). “The rise of jaw protrusion in spiny-rayed fishes closes the gap on elusive prey.” Current Biology 25:2696-2700.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[4] Mouillot, D, Villéger, S, Parravicini, V, Kulbicki, M, Arias-González, JE, Bender, M, Chabanet, P, Floeter, SR, Friedlander, A, Vigliola, L and Bellwood, DR (2014). “Functional over-redundancy and high functional vulnerability in global fish faunas on tropical reefs.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 111:13757-13762.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[5]  Bellwood, DR, Hoey, AS, Bellwood, O and Goatley, CHR (2014). “Evolution of long-toothed fishes and the changing nature of fish-benthos interactions on coral reefs.” Nature Communications 5: 3144.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[6]  Mouillot, D, Bellwood, DR, Baraloto, C, Chave, J, Galzin, R, Harmelin-Vivien, M, Kulbicki, M, Lavergne, S, Lavorel, S, Mouquet, N, Timothy Paine, CE, Renaud, J and Thuiller, W (2013). “Rare species support vulnerable functions in high diversity ecosystems.” PLoS Biology 11: e1001569.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[7]  Mouillot, D, Graham, NAJ, Villeger, S, Mason, NWH and Bellwood, DR (2013). “A functional approach reveals community responses to disturbances.” Trends in Ecology and Evolution 28: 167-177.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[8]  Renema, W, Bellwood, DR, Braga, JC, Bromfield, K, Hall, R, Johnson, KG, Lunt, P, Meyer, CP, McMonagle, LB, Morley, RJ, O’Dea, A, Todd, JA, Wesselingh, FP, Wilson, MEJ and Pandolfi JM (2008). “Hopping hotspots: global shifts in marine biodiversity.” Science 321: 654-657
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[9]  Bellwood, DR, Hughes, TP and Hoey, AS (2006). “Sleeping functional group drives coral reef recovery” Current Biology 16: 2434-2439.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[10]  Berkes, F, Hughes, TP, Steneck, RS, Wilson, JA, Bellwood, DR, Crona, B, Folke, C, Gunderson, LH, Leslie, HM, Norberg, J, Nystrom, M, Olsson, P, Osterblom, H, Scheffer, M and Worm, B  (2006). “Globalization, roving bandits and marine resources.” Science 311: 1557-1558.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[11]  Connolly, SR, Hughes, TP, Bellwood, DR and Karlson, RH (2005). “Community structure of corals and reef fishes at multiple scales.” Science 309: 1363-1365.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[12]  Bellwood, DR, Hughes, TP, Folke, C and Nystrom, M (2004). “Confronting the coral reef crisis.” Nature 429: 827-833.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[13]  Bellwood, DR, Hoey, AS and Choat, JH (2003). “Limited functional redundancy in high diversity systems: resilience and ecosystem function on coral reefs.” Ecology Letters 6: 281-285.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[14]  Hughes, TP, Baird, AH, Bellwood, DR, Card, M, Connolly, SR, Folke, C, Grosberg, R, Hoegh-Guldberg, O, Jackson, JBC, Kleypas, J, Lough, JM, Marshall, P, Nystrom, M, Palumbi, SR, Pandolfi, JM, Rosen, B and Roughgarden, J (2003). “Climate change, human impacts, and the resilience of coral reefs.” Science 301: 929-933.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

[15]  Bellwood, DR and Hughes, TP (2001). “Regional-scale assembly rules and biodiversity of coral reefs.” Science 292: 1532-1534.
Link to Full Text or Pdf

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Coral Reef Studies

ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies
James Cook University Townsville
Queensland 4811 Australia

Phone: 61 7 4781 4000
Email: info@coralcoe.org.au