Lobsters at risk due to ocean acidification

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Lobsters at risk due to ocean acidification

Ocean acidification disrupts the orientation of postlarval Caribbean spiny lobsters, an interesting study published on the Scientific reports, highlights how the oceanic situation is compromising the life of lobsters. In the study we can read how anthropogenic inputs into coastal ecosystems are causing more frequent environmental fluctuations and reducing seawater pH.

One such ecosystem is Florida Bay, an important nursery for the Caribbean spiny lobster, Panulirus argus. Although adult crustaceans are often resilient to reduced seawater pH, earlier ontogenetic stages can be physiologically limited in their tolerance to ocean acidification on shorter time scales.

We used a Y-maze chamber to test whether reduced-pH seawater altered the orientation of spiny lobster pueruli toward chemical cues produced by Laurencia spp. macroalgae, a known settlement cue for the species. We tested the hypothesis that pueruli conditioned in reduced-pH seawater would be less responsive to Laurencia spp.

chemical cues than pueruli in ambient-pH seawater by comparing the proportion of individuals that moved to the cue side of the chamber with the proportion that moved to the side with no cue. We also recorded the amount of time (sec) before a response was observed.

Pueruli conditioned in reduced-pH seawater were less responsive and failed to select the Laurencia cue. Our results suggest that episodic acidification of coastal waters might limit the ability of pueruli to locate settlement habitats, increasing postsettlement mortality.

Oregon: the devastating wildfires still burns

In the western US, especially in the state of Oregon, devastating fires are still burning. Just a few days ago we reported how the smoke coming from the west of the country has enveloped the New York skyline with its coils.

There are currently still about 80 active fires. In Oregon, the Bootleg destroyed a larger area than Los Angeles. The flames began to spread from last July 6 and are currently limited to only 25%. The coils of the fires have developed clouds of hot air which can cause a further spread of the fire.

About 16 fires are active in both Oregon and Washington state and several more in California and Nevada as well. The ongoing fires on the West Coast and in the US Midwest have destroyed over one million acres of land. Montana is the state with the highest number of wildfires, 18, followed by Idaho with 17.

New York invaded by smoke from wildfires of the West, especially in Oregon, which is currently the largest in the United States. The smoke produced by thousands of hectares of burning forest is moving towards the east coast, favored by strong winds.

Other parts of the eastern United States and Canada were also covered in a smoky gray haze yesterday. caused by the vast fires that are affecting the western areas of the country. In New York, according to a local expert, smoking is lower than usual.

However, this phenomenon is expected to disappear by today, with the expected arrival of a cold front in the New York region, according to a spokesperson for the US National Meteorological Service. The New York State Environmental Protection Services have issued a full-day air quality alert, a measure that is systematically triggered when concentrations of fine particles above 35 micrograms per cubic meter are expected.