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Withanage Jayasuriya

Doctor of Philosophy
Study Completed: 2017
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
Multiple scales of biological variability in New Zealand streams

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Studies with a simultaneous focus on multiple biological, environmental, and spatial scales are not common in freshwater ecology. Recent developments in theoretical ecology suggest that the structure of an ecosystem is driven by the complementarity among multiple biological and environmental factors. Mr Jayasuriya addressed the complexity of stream communities in Taranaki, New Zealand, with respect to their spatial ecology and functional diversities. His research findings show how geography and land-use patterns interactively affect the distribution of stream fish, and how agriculture impacts stream communities. In addition, his research further suggests that agriculture may negatively influence structural links among stream communities (fish and invertebrates) and their environment. Lastly, fish move in and out of protected areas, so his study emphasises that ecosystem management should be based on ecological similarities between habitats, not solely on management of local protected areas as tends to happen presently

Professor Russell Death
Dr Ian Henderson

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