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Stepwise building of plankton functional type (PFT) models: A feasible route to complex models?

Abstract : We discuss the strategy of building models of the lower part of the planktonic food web in a stepwise manner: starting with few plankton functional types (PFTs) and adding resolution and complexity while carrying along the insight and results gained from simpler models. A central requirement for PFT models is that they allow sustained coexistence of the PFTs. Here we discuss how this identifies a need to consider predation, parasitism and defence mechanisms together with nutrient acquisition and competition. Although the stepwise addition of complexity is assumed to be useful and feasible, a rapid increase in complexity strongly calls for alternative approaches able to model emergent system-level features without a need for detailed representation of all the underlying biological detail.
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https://hal.univ-brest.fr/hal-00459527
Contributor : Ivo Grigorov <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, February 24, 2010 - 11:30:05 AM
Last modification on : Friday, November 20, 2020 - 4:22:03 PM

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T. F. Thingstad, Espen Strand, Aud Larsen. Stepwise building of plankton functional type (PFT) models: A feasible route to complex models?. Progress in Oceanography, Elsevier, 2009, 84 (1-2), pp.6-15. ⟨10.1016/j.pocean.2009.09.001⟩. ⟨hal-00459527⟩

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