Coral reefs are in steep decline around the world and are suffering from the increasing effects of global change.
Understanding the mechanisms of coral population regulation and identifying the factors that determine its variability are now fundamental to identify the most threatened and most resistant species (winners vs. losers), and thus estimate the resilience of reef communities.
The present post-doctoral project aims to evaluate competitive interactions in corals and to examine the influence of intrinsic (taxa life history traits and colony characteristics) and extrinsic factors (physico-chemical characteristics of habitats, herbivory and corallivory).
The results will allow a better understanding of the processes of maintenance and regulation of coral populations, and a better understanding of the effect of environmental changes on their capacity of resistance and resilience.
This project concerns the reefs of New Caledonia, where the high diversity (350 coral species) and strong environmental gradients are major assets for the realization of this research program.