Ecosystems

Winners, losers among fish when landscape undergoes change
February 21, 2017 04:41 PM - University of Washington

As humans build roads, construct buildings and develop land for agriculture, freshwater ecosystems respond - but not always in the ways one might expect.

Over time, nuisance flooding can cost more than extreme, infrequent events
February 21, 2017 03:10 PM - UCI

Global climate change is being felt in many coastal communities of the United States, not always in the form of big weather disasters but as a steady drip, drip, drip of nuisance flooding.

Colorado River Flows to Keep Shrinking as Climate Warms
February 21, 2017 02:41 PM - Univeristy of Colorado

Warming in the 21st century reduced Colorado River flows by at least 0.5 million acre-feet, about the amount of water used by 2 million people for one year, according to new research from the University of Arizona and Colorado State University.

New URI professor examining effects of climate change on coral reefs, shellfish
February 21, 2017 01:16 PM - University of Rhode Island

The newest professor in the University of Rhode Island’s College of the Environment and Life Sciences, Hollie Putnam, thinks some corals and shellfish might have good enough “memories” to buffer the changes in ocean chemistry that are resulting from global climate change.

A native of Minnesota who earned a doctorate at the University of Hawaii, Putnam is studying how a wide variety of marine organisms are responding to changes in their environment. Focusing on reef-building corals and other shelled creatures that are threatened by increasing temperatures and ocean acidification, she is testing them to determine how species may acclimatize to the new circumstances.

MORE WARM-DWELLING ANIMALS AND PLANTS AS A RESULT OF CLIMATE CHANGE
February 21, 2017 11:47 AM - Senckenberg Research Institute and Natural History Museum

Since 1980, populations of warm-dwelling species in Germany have increased. The trend is particularly strong among warm-dwelling terrestrial species, as shown by the most comprehensive study across ecosystems in this regard to date. The most obvious increases occurred among warm-dwelling birds, butterflies, beetles, soil organisms and lichens according to the study published recently in the scientific journal “Nature Ecology & Evolution” led by Senckenberg scientists. Thus, it appears possible that rising temperatures due to the climate change have had a widespread impact on the population trends of animals in the past 30 years.

Fluorescence method detects mercury contamination in fish
February 21, 2017 11:25 AM - Plataforma SINC

Researchers from the University of Burgos (Spain) have developed a fluorescent polymer that lights up in contact with mercury that may be present in fish. High levels of the metal were detected in samples of swordfish and tuna. According to the conclusions of another Spanish study, mercury exposure is linked to reduced foetal and placental growth in pregnant women.

The presence of the toxic metal mercury in the environment comes from natural sources, however, in the last decades industrial waste has caused an increase in concentrations of the metal in some areas of the sea. In the food chain, mercury can be diluted either in organic form as methylmercury (MeHg+) or as an inorganic salt, the cation Hg2+.

Satellite Views Storm System Affecting Southern California
February 17, 2017 03:20 PM - NASA

An almost continuous onshore flow is expected to bring storms to California and portions of the Pacific Northwest in a very active, wet pattern over the next couple of days, according to the National Weather Service.

NASA Examines Ex-Tropical Cyclone Dineo's Rainfall
February 17, 2017 03:04 PM - NASA

Late on Feb. 15, Dineo made landfall in southern Mozambique. By Feb. 17 the storm weakened to a remnant low pressure area when NASA's Terra satellite passed overhead. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer or MODIS instrument aboard Terra captured a visible image that showed the center of the low pressure area over Zimbabwe and clouds extended over found Dineo's clouds stretched over southern Mozambique, Swaziland, eastern Botswana and northeastern South Africa.

It's More than Just Climate Change
February 17, 2017 02:48 PM - University of Maryland

A new scientific paper by a University of Maryland-led international team of distinguished scientists, including five members of the National Academies, argues that there are critical two-way feedbacks missing from current climate models that are used to inform environmental, climate, and economic policies. The most important inadequately-modeled variables are inequality, consumption, and population.

Fish affected by Deepwater Horizon spill give clues to air pollution heart disease
February 17, 2017 02:25 PM - Manchester University

A study by Manchester and Stanford scientists into the effects on fish of a 2010 oil disaster could shed new light on how air pollution affects humans’ hearts.

The 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster resulted in a major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, an area of water which is heavily populated with fish species. In a paper published in Nature Scientific Reports, the team analysed the effects of individual components of crude oil on the hearts of fish.

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