Claim: Global warming to kill krill, wreck ecosystem

Warmists love evolution but are loathe to apply it. Haven’t the krill always adapted to a constantly changing ocean?

Below is the Nature Climate Change abstract.

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Risk maps for Antarctic krill under projected Southern Ocean acidification

Nature Climate Change (2013) doi:10.1038/nclimate1937

Marine ecosystems of the Southern Ocean are particularly vulnerable to ocean acidification1. Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba; hereafter krill) is the key pelagic species of the region and its largest fishery resource2. There is therefore concern about the combined effects of climate change, ocean acidification and an expanding fishery on krill and ultimately, their dependent predators—whales, seals and penguins3, 4. However, little is known about the sensitivity of krill to ocean acidification. Juvenile and adult krill are already exposed to variable seawater carbonate chemistry because they occupy a range of habitats and migrate both vertically and horizontally on a daily and seasonal basis5. Moreover, krill eggs sink from the surface to hatch at 700–1,000 m (ref. 6), where the carbon dioxide partial pressure (pCO2) in sea water is already greater than it is in the atmosphere7. Krill eggs sink passively and so cannot avoid these conditions. Here we describe the sensitivity of krill egg hatch rates to increased CO2, and present a circumpolar risk map of krill hatching success under projected pCO2 levels. We find that important krill habitats of the Weddell Sea and the Haakon VII Sea to the east are likely to become high-risk areas for krill recruitment within a century. Furthermore, unless CO2 emissions are mitigated, the Southern Ocean krill population could collapse by 2300 with dire consequences for the entire ecosystem.

5 thoughts on “Claim: Global warming to kill krill, wreck ecosystem”

  1. Quite a worrying story for sure. If krill can’t adapt, the many hundreds of animal species that depend on them for food are going to be at high risk too, of dying out. A hundred years is not long enough, as far as I know for any such species to adapt/evolve in such short time. Does anyone know if there is an update from this report, as this is now almost a year later?

    Thank you.

    Andy

  2. You might be interested in this newer article about threats to krill’s winter diet – http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-04/krill-diet-discovery-predicts-threat-to-antarctic-ecosystem/5720546

    Regarding ocean acidification, you may be interested in this story from a couple of days ago about an experiment that is underway at the Australian Antarctic Division – http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2015/s4166795.htm

    Finally, there is a krill cam at the Australian Antarctic Division’s krill aquarium in Kingston, Tasmania. You can view it here – http://www.antarctica.gov.au/webcams/krill-cam

  3. Whomever posted this is clueless. Asking the stupid question “Haven’t the krill always adapted to a constantly changing ocean?” proves that whomever it is, has missed the point. The point is not that krill haven’t adapted, they obviously have, but how long that process takes and whether that length of time is adequate to prevent collapse and possible extinction of the species that depend on them. It’s stated in the abstract!

    If you’re going to “debunk” science then you should know enough to understand it. Whomever added this does not, but that doesn’t mean anything in today’s truthy denial based world.

  4. Whomever posted this is clueless. Asking the question “Haven’t the krill always adapted to a constantly changing ocean?” proves that whomever it is, has missed the point. The point is not that krill haven’t adapted, they obviously have, but how long that process takes and whether that length of time is adequate to prevent collapse and possible extinction of the species that depend on them. It’s stated in the abstract!

    If you’re going to “debunk” science then you should know enough to understand it. Whomever added this does not, but that doesn’t mean anything in today’s truthy denial based world.

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