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The Biology and Ecology of Giant Kelp Forests$
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David R. Schiel and Michael S. Foster

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780520278868

Published to California Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520278868.001.0001

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Detached Giant Kelp Communities, Production, and Food / Control Webs

Detached Giant Kelp Communities, Production, and Food / Control Webs

(p.141) 6 Detached Giant Kelp Communities, Production, and Food / Control Webs
The Biology and Ecology of Giant Kelp Forests

David R. Schiel

Michael S. Foster

University of California Press

This chapter examines giant kelp communities. Areas with giant kelp include a multitude of other species. However, because giant kelp is usually dominant, is the most visually obvious species, and commonly has by far the greatest biomass, such areas are called giant kelp communities. They are also called giant kelp “forests” or kelp “beds.” The abundance of giant kelp varies considerably across areas, and adults may become temporarily absent for many reasons, such as the population being annual, or being removed by grazers, storms, or other episodic oceanographic events. Given that Macrocystis occurs in both hemispheres across many different biogeographical provinces, there is clearly no single community of giant kelp across the regions it occupies.

Keywords:   giant kelp communities, giant kelp forests, kelp beds, oceanographic events, Macrocystis

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