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Southern Ocean Ecosystem Status and Perspectives on Whale Population Recovery

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Part of the Advances in Polar Ecology book series (AVPE, volume 5)

Abstract

Cetaceans, being one of the animals at the top of trophic pyramids, play an important role in marine (rarely in fresh-water) ecosystems. Their viability considerably defines the speed and efficiency of the cycle of organic matter and energy in biogeocenosis and substantially affects the biological efficiency of ecosystems. As a result of extended transzonal migrations, the value of cetaceans in the realization of transboundary transportation of substance and energy, both vertical and horizontal, is great. The influence of whales on various communities of the Southern Ocean ecosystems is so diverse and ambiguous, that with the current level of knowledge, it can hardly be estimated quantitatively or even qualitatively. Such estimations can only be of a rough nature.

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Marine Biology of National Academy of UkraineOdessaUkraine

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