Disentangling conditional effects of multiple regime shifts on Atlantic cod productivity
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionPLOS ONE. 2020, 15:e0237414 (11), 1-16. 10.1371/journal.pone.0237414
Regime shifts are increasingly prevalent in the ecological literature. However, definitions vary and detection methods are still developing. Here, we employ a novel statistical algorithm based on the Bayesian online change-point detection framework to simultaneously identify shifts in the mean and (or) variance of time series data. We detected multiple regime shifts in long-term (59–154 years) patterns of coastal Norwegian Atlantic cod (>70% decline) and putative drivers of cod productivity: North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO); sea-surface temperature; zooplankton abundance; fishing mortality (F). The consequences of an environmental or climate-related regime shift on cod productivity are accentuated when regime shifts coincide, fishing mortality is high, and populations are small. The analyses suggest that increasing F increasingly sensitized cod in the mid 1970s and late 1990s to regime shifts in NAO, zooplankton abundance, and water temperature. Our work underscores the necessity of accounting for human-induced mortality in regime shift analyses of marine ecosystems.