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Category: Environment


Flux towers are equipped with inlets for "sniffing the air " above the forest, in addition to other instruments such as sonic anemometers for measuring wind.
For the first time, scientists have been successful in measuring the processes by which an entire forest "breathes," using sophisticated technology involving flux towers and new instrumentation that can precisely measure two different types (isotopes) of carbon dioxide in the air. A team led by Richard Wehr and Scott Saleska at the University of Arizona obtained detailed long-term measurements of the respiration and photosynthesis rates of a temperate deciduous forest during the day and the night.

A new study by Simon Fraser University marine ecologists Jessica Schultz, Ryan Cloutier and Isabelle Côté has discovered that a mass mortality of sea stars resulted in a domino effect on B.C.'s West Coast Howe Sound marine ecology.


Larval perch from the Baltic Sea that has filled its stomach with microplastic waste particles.
In a new study, published in Science, researchers from Uppsala University found that larval fish exposed to microplastic particles during development displayed changed behaviors and stunted growth which lead to greatly increased mortality rates. The researchers discovered that larval perch that had access to microplastic particles only ate plastic and ignored their natural food source of free-swimming zooplankton.


Purdue researchers found that honeybees collect pollen from a wide range of plants, even in areas dominated by corn and soybeans.
A Purdue University study shows that honeybees collect the vast majority of their pollen from plants other than crops, even in areas dominated by corn and soybeans, and that pollen is consistently contaminated with a host of agricultural and urban pesticides throughout the growing season.


This is an oyster at Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery in Netarts Bay, Oregon.
The ocean chemistry along the West Coast of North America is changing rapidly because of global carbon dioxide emissions, and the governments of Oregon, California, Washington and British Columbia can take actions now to offset and mitigate the effects of these changes.


Fishing boats at the harbor in Luderitz, Namibia. The small town is known for its crayfish industry.
New groundbreaking research shows that with improved fishing approaches -- compared to business as usual -- the majority of the world's wild fisheries could be at healthy levels in just 10 years and global fish populations could double by 2050.


A major coral bleaching event took place on this part of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
A study at Oregon State University has concluded that significant outbreaks of viruses may be associated with coral bleaching events, especially as a result of multiple environmental stresses.


Historical and modern photographs of Stone Island taken in a) 1915 (photographer unknown); b) 1994 (photographer A. Elliot © Commonwealth of Australia GBRMPA); c) 2012 (photographer H. Markham); and Bramston Reef taken in d) c.1890 (W. Saville-Kent); e) 1994 (photographer A. Elliot © Commonwealth of Australia GBRMPA); f) 2012 (photographer T. Clark). Landscape features in the background of the images helped to locate the same sites: Gloucester Island (GI) and Cape Gloucester (CG).
Credit

Source: Clark et al. 2016. The timing of significant Great Barrier Reef coral loss captured by a series of historical photos has been accurately determined for the first time by a University of Queensland)-led study.


Thirty percent of global fish catch may be unreported, according to new research.
Countries drastically underreport the number of fish caught worldwide, according to a new study, and the numbers obscure a significant decline in the total catch .


In terms of evolutionary history, less than a quarter of wrasse species receive minimum protection levels.
Marine scientists are calling for a re-think of how marine protected areas (MPAs) are planned and coordinated, following a global assessment of the conservation of tropical corals and fishes.


This is a scanning electron microscope image of a coccolithophore, which can measure from 5 to 15 microns across, less than a fifth the width of a human hair.
A microscopic marine alga is thriving in the North Atlantic to an extent that defies scientific predictions, suggesting swift environmental change as a result of increased carbon dioxide in the ocean, a study led a by Johns Hopkins University scientist has found.


This is an example of a healthy reef.
Almost every person has an appreciation for natural environments. In addition, most people find healthy or pristine locations with high biodiversity more beautiful and aesthetically pleasing than environmentally degraded locations. In a study which computed 'aesthetics' as it relates to coral reefs, a multidisciplinary group of researchers have shown that an objective computational analysis of photographic images can be used to assess the health of a coral reef.


This is a right whale calf washed up at Peninsula Valdes, Argentina. New research indicates a likely connection between the deaths of hundreds such calves starting in the mid-2000s and...
The baby whales suddenly began dying in 2005. And continued for several years running.

Food waste is today's hot topic. In fact, according to scientific surveys in Switzerland, 300 kg of perfectly good food ends up in the bin per person each year. However, this number encompasses the entire shopping basket, from yoghurt to drinkable leftover wine and two-day-old bread.

A small freshwater plant that has evolved to live in harsh seawater is giving scientists insight into how living things adapt to changes in their environment.

A world-first global analysis of marine responses to climbing human CO2 emissions has painted a grim picture of future fisheries and ocean ecosystems.

The globe's forests have shrunk by three per cent since 1990 - an area equivalent to the size of South Africa - despite significant improvements in conservation over the past decade.

Data scientists at the University of Warwick are starting a new project using innovative visualisation techniques, which they believe could transform how evidence is used to inform climate change adaptation initiatives.

A study by the University of Liverpool has found that the genetic diversity of wild plant species could be altered rapidly by anthropogenic climate change.


The study looked at Thaumarchaeota archaea, which are found throughout the world's oceans. These single-celled organisms have one membrane sac that encloses their bodies.
Understanding the planet's history is crucial if we are to predict its future. While some records are preserved in ice cores or tree rings, other records of the climate's ancient past are buried deep in the seafloor.


This image shows an abnormally low lake level at Horseshoe Lake in the high-elevation Mammoth Lakes Basin, Sierra Nevada Mountains, This photo was taken June 2015.
A new study says that global warming has measurably worsened the ongoing California drought. While scientists largely agree that natural weather variations have caused a lack of rain, an emerging consensus says that rising temperatures may be making things worse by driving moisture from plants and soil into the air. The new study is the first to estimate how much worse: as much as a quarter. The findings suggest that within a few decades, continually increasing temperatures and resulting moisture losses will push California into even more persistent aridity. The study appears this week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

Nutrient-rich water from melting Antarctic glaciers nourishes the ocean food chain, creating feeding "hot spots" in large gaps in the sea ice, according to a new study.


Coral habitats in the Bering Sea are home to a plethora of fish and marine mammals.
North of the Aleutian Islands, submarine canyons in the cold waters of the eastern Bering Sea contain a highly productive "green belt" that is home to deep-water corals as well as a plethora of fish and marine mammals.

Research has suggested yellow perch grow more rapidly during the short winters resulting from climate change, but a new study shows warmer water temperatures can lead to the production of less hardy eggs and larvae that have trouble surviving these early stages of life in Lake Erie.

The growing consumer demand for protein--and the lack of new farmland to raise more livestock--could make insects an attractive alternative to traditional protein sources, according to a July 13 symposium at IFT15: Where Science Feeds Innovation hosted by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) in Chicago.


Abandoned fishing line can injure corals.
A new and significant role for marine reserves on the Great Barrier Reef has been revealed, with researchers finding the reserves reduce the prevalence of coral diseases.


Historically, expansion of cattle pastures has driven deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon, where these pastures cover about two-thirds of all the deforested land.
Expansion of cattle pastures has led to the destruction of huge swaths of rain forest in Brazil, home to the world's largest herd of commercial beef cattle. But a new study led by the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Holly Gibbs shows that market-driven "zero deforestation agreements" have dramatically influenced the behavior of ranchers and the slaughterhouses to which they sell.


Barley cultivation in Jiuzhaigou National Park hasn't changed much in nearly 2,000 years.
Climate change may be responsible for the abrupt collapse of civilization on the fringes of the Tibetan Plateau around 2000 B.C.

Casting a large interdisciplinary research net has helped Simon Fraser University archaeologist Dana Lepofsky and 10 collaborators dig deeper into their findings about ancient clam gardens in the Pacific Northwest to formulate new perspectives.


Parrot grind up coral during feeding and, after digesting the edible content, excrete the rest as sand, which can then be used in island building.
As well as being a beautiful species capable of changing its colour, shape and even gender, new research published today shows that parrotfish, commonly found on healthy coral reefs, can also play a pivotal role in providing the sands necessary to build and maintain coral reef islands.

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