Some scientists believe there may be too many whales for the population to sustain itself. Others say this explanation of “overcapacity” and “natural causes” overlooks the gantlet of hazards that grays now face — including ecosystem alteration, ship strikes, entanglement in fishing gear, plastics pollution, disease, ocean acidification and loss of kelp forests.
New Zealand Ocean Waters’ “Signs of structural collapse…”
“We’re getting vision of this landscape scale collapse for the first time … arguably it’s a little bit worse than we expected because of the extent of the barreness and the distribution so far out to sea,” Frankham told Breakfast.
Crab Industry at Odds with Warming Waters
But as rising ocean temperatures threaten to make fishery closures routine, it will be even harder to count on crab for holiday meals—or livelihoods. Over the past decade, warming sea waters have produced harmful algal blooms that contaminate crab meat with domoic acid, a neurotoxin that can cause seizures, memory loss and other serious symptoms and has been blamed for poisoning and stranding scores of sea lions in California every year. State officials delayed three out of the last six crab seasons to protect public health after an unprecedented multiyear marine heat wave, dubbed “the blob,” hit the north Pacific Ocean in 2013.
90% of Sunflower Sea Stars Gone
New research shows that more than 90 per cent of sunflower sea stars off the West Coast have died over the past decade, and the species is close to extinction. The study, led by Oregon State University, the Nature Conservancy and over 60… Read More ›
Environmental Crisis on Russian Pacific Coast
Scientists from a local nature reserve who examined the waters of the bay said 95% of sea life to the depth of 10 to 15 meters was dead.
How Wildfire Smoke May Harm Whales & Dolphins
Wildfire smoke is made up of a range of gases, including carbon monoxide; nitrogen dioxide; polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs; and hazardous particulate matter, which has been shown to increase risks of respiratory and cardiovascular illnesses in humans.
Pacific West Coast Acidification Rate Larger than Other Oceans
The ocean absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which reduces pH levels and concentrations of calcium carbonate, a mineral used by shellfish to calcify their shells. As more carbon is released into the atmosphere, concentrations of calcium carbonate decrease and the shells of organisms like foraminifera get thinner, a trend Osborne saw clearly in the sediment cores she examined.
“The shell thickness record instantly showed a long-term declining trend,” she said. “It was really obvious across entire record.”
Massive Marine Heat Wave Returns
The current expanse of warm water stretches from Alaska to Southern California to Hawaii. It appears similar to conditions five years ago when the original “blob” was first taking shape, federal scientists said, although so far, the warmer-than-normal waters extend down only about 150 feet below the surface, rather than 600 feet five years ago.
Underwater Sound System with Hopes of Reducing Whale Injury from Ships
A listening station on the channel floor is able to capture whale calls as far away as 30 miles (48 kilometers), the Los Angeles Times reported Friday. That device is connected by cable to a buoy floating above that transmits data by satellite to scientists on shore.
30 Dead Gray Whales Along West Coast
Editor’s note: The consistently disturbing news of marine mammals dying off or stranding in mass appears to be a global event. Gray whales are an iconic species that have survived throughout the centuries, including the great whale hunts of the… Read More ›