Section Editor rating: 8 / 10James Reimer –– Just as the reviewers and AE stated, loss of sea cucumbers is a global problem - and this study shows just how important these ecosystem engineers can be in ecosystem function.
Section Editor rating: 7 / 10James Reimer –– Completely agree with the AE on this assessment - and thus this article could be important to a wide readership including companies making fishing lures, as well as anglers and scientists.
Section Editor rating: 7 / 10Robert Toonen –– This one of the only studies on mesophotic marine habitats is this part of the world, and will be a critical study for anyone trying to make generalizations from their own local region across the Pacific. To quote the most critical reviewer, this is "groundbreaking research" of an understudied ecosystem in rarely studied region of the globe.
Section Editor rating: 8 / 10James Reimer –– This work examines the ecological importance of parasites, a topic that could be on great significance yet has received little research attention.
Section Editor rating: 8 / 10Robert Toonen –– There is considerable interest in eDNA, and concurrent debate about the utility, reliability and temporal resolution of the approach. This paper contributes an important understanding of the reliability and temporal scale over which this technique can resolve community differences for tidally-influenced nearshore waters.
Editor rating: 8 / 10Curtis Daehler –– This work provides genetic evidence suggesting the native range of a widely distributed animal that was accidentally spread by humans starting hundreds of years ago.
Editor rating: 8 / 10Xavier Pochon –– This study provides the first range-wide phylogeographic study of the banded coral shrimp S. hispidus, extending across more than 27,000 km of the globe. Coalescence analysis brings evidence that an isolated Indo-Pacific lineage evolved from a rare dispersal event from the Atlantic around South Africa via the Benguela Current, thereby colonizing the Indian and Pacific Oceans, followed by dispersal across the Indo-Pacific in the last 200,000 years. Surprisingly, this benthic coral reef associated shrimp shows a single haplotype dominating the largest continuous tropical oceanic expanse on the planet.
Editor rating: 8 / 10Carlos Conte-Junior –– There are few papers that explore fish products.
Editor rating: 8 / 10Xavier Pochon –– This study developed a simple and cost-effective assay that quickly allows for discrimination amongst coral species in the genus Pocillopora using simple PCR amplification followed by digestion with widely available restriction enzymes. Pocilloporid corals exhibit extreme phenotypic plasticity, making morphological identification of species very challenging. The assay was tested on 691 coral samples collected from across the Hawaiian Archipelago and successfully characterised all six Pocillopora species occurring in Hawaii. Compared to sequence-based identification, this method is simple, rapid and represents a cost saving of nearly 95%. This work will benefit future studies of population structure, ecology, biodiversity, evolution and conservation in this challenging coral genus.
Editor rating: 7 / 10Marc Robinson-Rechavi –– This study allows to link natural variation in morphology with genetic divergence in expression patterns, thus helping link ecology to molecular genomics.
Discussing these articles