Ecosystems

Researchers collaborate on climate change as cause of wetland die-off
March 22, 2017 08:43 AM - Nipissing University

Researchers from Nipissing University’s Geography department are part of a study published in the journal Marine and Freshwater Research that points a finger at climate change as the cause of a massive wetland die-off in Australia.

The foundation of aquatic life can rapidly adapt to global warming, new research suggests
March 21, 2017 04:11 PM - University of Exeter

Important microscopic creatures which produce half of the oxygen in the atmosphere can rapidly adapt to global warming, new research suggests.

Phytoplankton, which also act as an essential food supply for fish, can increase the rate at which they take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen while in warmer water temperatures, a long-running experiment shows.

Monitoring of one species, a green algae, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, after ten years of them being in waters of a higher temperature shows they quickly adapt so they are still able to photosynthesise more than they respire.

2017 U.S. Wildfire Season Off to an Intense Start
March 21, 2017 03:59 PM - Yale Environment 360

Wildfires have consumed more than 2 million acres of U.S. land so far this year, nearly 10 times the long-term average and a punishing start to this year’s wildfire season, according to data from the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC).

Boulder scientist teams on study probing implications of ice sheet's demise
March 21, 2017 01:25 PM - Charlie Brennan via University of Colorado at Boulder

Flying over the remote during research at the Barnes Ice Cap on Baffin Island in 2009, a Boulder scientist saw dark where there should have been white.

Closer inspection revealed that what Gifford Miller spotted was the remnants of a 1963 geological camp that had been buried for decades by snow and ice. Long-abandoned tents and snowmobiles were being unveiled by melting of the ice cap, and that helped inspire a study that suggests a disturbing climate change signal.

Dead Zones May Threaten Coral Reefs Worldwide
March 20, 2017 03:38 PM - Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

Dead zones affect dozens of coral reefs around the world and threaten hundreds more according to a new study by Smithsonian scientists published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Watching a massive coral reef die-off on the Caribbean coast of Panama, they suspected it was caused by a dead zone—a low-oxygen area that snuffs out marine life—rather than by ocean warming or acidification.

Dead Zones May Threaten Coral Reefs Worldwide
March 20, 2017 03:38 PM - Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

Dead zones affect dozens of coral reefs around the world and threaten hundreds more according to a new study by Smithsonian scientists published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Watching a massive coral reef die-off on the Caribbean coast of Panama, they suspected it was caused by a dead zone—a low-oxygen area that snuffs out marine life—rather than by ocean warming or acidification.

Parasitic Fish Offer Evolutionary Insights
March 20, 2017 02:26 PM - California Institute of Technology

Lamprey are slimy, parasitic eel-like fish, one of only two existing species of vertebrates that have no jaw. While many would be repulsed by these creatures, lamprey are exciting to biologists because they are so primitive, retaining many characteristics similar to their ancient ancestors and thus offering answers to some of life's biggest evolutionary questions. Now, by studying the lamprey, Caltech researchers have discovered an unexpected mechanism for the evolution of the neurons of the peripheral nervous system—nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord.

Changing Temperatures and Precipitation May Affect Living Skin of Drylands
March 20, 2017 08:46 AM - United States Geological Survey (USGS)

Arid and semiarid ecosystems are expected to experience significant changes in temperature and precipitation patterns, which may affect soil organisms in ways that cause surfaces to become lighter in color and thus reflect more sunlight, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study.

Extensive ice cap once covered sub-antarctic island of South Georgia
March 20, 2017 08:39 AM - University of Exeter

A new study reveals the sub-antarctic island of South Georgia – famous for its wildlife – was covered by a massive ice cap during the last ice age.

 

Wild Birds an Unlikely Source of Costly Poultry Disease
March 17, 2017 07:54 AM - United States Geological Survey (USGS)

Wild ducks and shorebirds do not appear to carry Newcastle disease viruses that sicken or kill poultry, according to a new study led by the U.S. Geological Survey.

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