Current Marine Species News and Events

Current Marine Species News and Events, Marine Species News Articles.
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Drifter or homebody? Study first to show where whitespotted eagle rays roam
It's made for long-distance travel, yet movement patterns of the whitespotted eagle ray remain a mystery. Between 2016 and 2018, scientists fitted 54 rays with acoustic transmitters and tracked them along both the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coasts of Florida, which differ in environmental characteristics. Results of the study reveal striking differences in travel patterns on the Atlantic coast compared to the Gulf coast and findings have significant conservation and adaptive management implications for this protected species. (2021-02-23)

Whale Sharks show remarkable capacity to recover from injuries
A new study has for the first time explored the extraordinary rate at which the world's largest fish, the endangered whale shark, can recover from its injuries. The findings reveal that lacerations and abrasions, increasingly caused through collisions with boats, can heal in a matter of weeks and researchers found evidence of partially removed dorsal fins re-growing. (2021-02-23)

Microbiome boost may help corals resist bleaching
Providing corals with cocktails of natural probiotics could enhance their tolerance to stress and reduce mortality in coral bleaching events. (2021-02-23)

Protective ship coatings as an underestimated source of microplastic pollution
Shipping traffic can be a major source of microplastics, especially out in the open ocean. In a new study, a team of environmental geochemists from the University of Oldenburg (Germany) for the first time provides an overview of microplastics mass distribution in the North Sea. The scientists found that most of the plastic particles in water samples taken in the south-eastern North Sea originate from binders used in marine paints. Their hypothesis is that ships leave a kind of 'skid mark' in the water. (2021-02-23)

New comprehensive study on feeding patterns of tiger mosquitos in Europe
This study, published recently in the international journal Insects, was conducted by researchers from the University of Granada, the Doñana Biological Station, and the Biomedical Research Networking Centre for Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP) (2021-02-23)

Rapid evolution may help species adapt to climate change and competition
A study shows that a fruit fly species can adapt rapidly to an invader and this evolutionary change can affect how they deal with a stressful climate. Over a few months, the naturalized species adapted to the invasive species' presence. This affected how the flies adapted to cold weather. The flies exposed to invasive species evolved in the fall to be larger, lay fewer eggs and develop faster than flies that hadn't been exposed. (2021-02-22)

Plant responses to climate are lagged
Plant responses to climate drivers such as temperature and precipitation may become visible only years after the actual climate event. This is a key result of new research led by the German Centre of Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) published in Global Change Biology. The results indicate that climate drivers may have different effects on the survivorship, growth and reproduction of plant species than suggested by earlier studies. (2021-02-22)

Dozens of new lichen species discovered in East African mountain forests
The species diversity and relationships of lichens in the genus Leptogium, which are often very difficult to identify to species, were assessed on the basis of DNA analyses using a large dataset collected during more than 10 years from East Africa. (2021-02-22)

Potential regional declines in species richness of tomato pollinators under climate
About 70% of the world's main crops depend on insect pollination. Climate change is already affecting the abundance and distribution of insects, which could cause geographical mismatches between crops and their pollinators. Crops that rely primarily on wild pollinators (e.g., crops that cannot be effectively pollinated by commercial colonies of honey bees) could be particularly in jeopardy. (2021-02-22)

A dynamic forest floor
Walk along the beach after a winter storm and you'll see a shore littered with wracks of giant kelp, some 30 to 40 feet long -- evidence of the storm's impact on coastal kelp forests. (2021-02-22)

Stem cells provide hope for dwindling wildlife populations
A paper recently published in the scientific journal Stem Cells and Development shares an important advancement in conservation -- one that may make the difference between survival and extinction for wildlife species that have been reduced to very small population sizes. Using fibroblast cells that have been preserved in San Diego Zoo Global's Frozen Zoo®, scientists have been able to generate induced pluripotent stem cells of northern and southern white rhinoceroses. (2021-02-22)

Don't focus on genetic diversity to save our species
Scientists at the University of Adelaide have challenged the common assumption that genetic diversity of a species is a key indicator of extinction risk. Published in the journal PNAS, the scientists demonstrate that there is no simple relationship between genetic diversity and species survival. But, Dr João Teixeira and Dr Christian Huber from the University of Adelaide's School of Biological Sciences conclude, the focus shouldn't be on genetic diversity anyway, it should be on habitat protection. (2021-02-22)

First DNA extracted from modern, ancient and fossil tropical shells
The next time you eat seafood, think about the long-term effects. Will consistently eating the biggest fish or the biggest conch, mean that only the smaller individuals will have a chance to reproduce? (2021-02-22)

Colorful connection found in coral's ability to survive higher temperatures
A coral's color can tell of its resilience to climate change, and a new study from the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University has shed light on the underlying genetic factors that may be at work behind this. (2021-02-21)

Sweet marine particles resist hungry bacteria
Rather sweet than salty: In the ocean microalgae produce a lot of sugar during algae blooms. These enormous quantities of algal biomass are normally recycled rapidly by marine bacteria, degradation process that is an important part of the global carbon cycle. Especially sugars have been considered as easily digestible and therefore poor candidates for natural carbon sequestration. Now scientists from Bremen revealed: There exists a sugar in algae that resists rapid microbial degradation and stores carbon during spring blooms. (2021-02-19)

Study reveals energy sources supporting coral reef predators
Since Charles Darwin's day, the abundance of life on coral reefs has been puzzling, given that most oceanic surface waters in the tropics are low in nutrients and unproductive. But now research, led by Newcastle University and published in in the journal Science Advances, has confirmed that the food web of a coral reef in the Maldives relies heavily on what comes in from the open ocean. (2021-02-19)

Parasites' dispersal capacity and rates of genetic introgression--a study
The results, recently published in the journal Communications Biology, have important applications in the field of coevolutionary biology (2021-02-19)

Giant predatory worms roamed the seafloor until 5.3 million years ago
An international study in which the University of Granada participated--recently published in the journal Scientific Reports--has identified a new fossil record of these mysterious animals in the northeast of Taiwan (China), in marine sediments from the Miocene Age (between 23 and 5.3 million years ago). These organisms, similar to today's Bobbit worm (Eunice aphroditois), were approximately 2 m long and 3 cm in diameter and lived in burrows. (2021-02-18)

The distribution of vertebrate animals redefines temperate and cold climate regions
The distribution of vegetation is routinely used to classify climate regions worldwide, yet whether these regions are relevant to other organisms is unknown. Umeå researchers have established climate regions based on vertebrate species' distributions in a new study published in eLife. They found that while high-energy climate regions are similar across vertebrate and plant groups, there are large differences in temperate and cold climates. (2021-02-18)

New UCF study examines leeches for role in major disease of sea turtles in Florida
University of Central Florida researchers are homing in on the cause of a major disease of sea turtles, with some of their latest findings implicating saltwater leeches as a possible factor. The results, published recently in the journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms, present the first evidence of a significant association between leeches and the disease in sea turtles, according to the researchers. (2021-02-18)

A natural protection racket among damselfish and mysid shrimp
In nature, there are examples of animals helping one another and living in mutually beneficial relationships that have helped shape the world's landscapes and biodiversity. New research from the University of Delaware has found one of these domesticator-domesticate relationships undersea, in the waters off Belize, where damselfish provide multigenerational support/protection to mysid shrimp in exchange for a resource or service that benefits both species. (2021-02-18)

Wintering bird communities track climate change faster than breeding communities in Europe and North America
A study recently completed in Europe and North America indicates that the composition of wintering and breeding bird communities changes in line with global warming. However, wintering bird communities are considerably faster at tracking the changing climate compared to breeding communities. (2021-02-17)

New study evaluates the advancement of ecology from a 2D to 3D science
A new study, published in Bioscience, considers the future of ecology, where technological advancement towards a multidimensional science will continue to fundamentally shift the way we view, explore, and conceptualize the natural world. (2021-02-17)

Fishes contribute roughly 1.65 billion tons of carbon in feces and other matter annually
Scientists have little understanding of the role fishes play in the global carbon cycle linked to climate change, but a Rutgers-led study found that carbon in feces, respiration and other excretions from fishes - roughly 1.65 billion tons annually - make up about 16 percent of the total carbon that sinks below the ocean's upper layers. (2021-02-17)

Fish diet heats up marine biodiversity hotspot
A never-before-seen biodiversity pattern of coral reef fishes suggests some fishes might be exceptionally vulnerable to environmental change. It highlights, for the first time, a unique link between the diet and distribution of species across the marine realm. (2021-02-17)

Poking the paradigm
Deprive a mountain range of its wolves, and soon the burgeoning deer population will strip its slopes bare. ''I now suspect that just as a deer herd lives in mortal fear of its wolves, so does a mountain live in mortal fear of its deer,'' wrote ecologist Aldo Leopold in his landmark 1949 title ''A Sand County Almanac.'' (2021-02-17)

Breakthrough in the fight against spruce bark beetles
For the first time, a research team led by Lund University in Sweden has mapped out exactly what happens when spruce bark beetles use their sense of smell to find trees and partners to reproduce with. The hope is that the results will lead to better pest control and protection of the forest in the future. (2021-02-16)

Turf wars: Ocean acidification and feedback loops lock in turf algal systems
Researchers from the University of Tsukuba have found that seawater acidification locked marine communities of turf algae in a stable state, preventing the growth of kelp and coral species. The degraded turf algal systems were stabilized by feedback loops (control mechanisms in a system). This study will contribute to efforts to manage shifts from complex and diverse marine ecosystems to degraded ones, and better conserve coastal ecosystems and their contributions to human wellbeing. (2021-02-16)

Strange creatures accidentally discovered beneath Antarctica's ice shelves
Prior research has suggested that the watery depths below the Antarctic ice shelves are too cold and nutrient poor to sustain much life. But a new study from British Antarctic Survey published in Frontiers in Marine Science reveals the discovery of a colony of sponges and other animals attached to a boulder on the sea floor - challenging researchers' understanding about the existence of life in extreme environments. (2021-02-15)

Managing crab and lobster catches could offer long-term benefits
A study by the University of Plymouth (UK) has found that managing the density of crab and lobster pots at an optimum level increases the quality of catch, benefits the marine environment and makes the industry more sustainable in the long term. (2021-02-15)

Climate change forces rethinking of conservation biology planning
For more than a decade, governments in countries across the world have made significant progress to expand their protected areas network to conserve the planet's biodiversity. According to a new study published in the journal Global Change Biology, the locations of these protected areas do not take into account the potential long-term effects of climate change in these protected areas. (2021-02-15)

Recommendations for regional action to combat marine plastic pollution
Millions of tonnes of plastic waste find their way into the ocean every year. A team of researchers from the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam has investigated the role of regional ocean governance in the fight against marine plastic pollution, highlighting why regional marine governance should be further strengthened as negotiations for a new global agreement continue. (2021-02-11)

New study reveals biodiversity important at regional scales
New research shows that biodiversity is important not just at the traditional scale of short-term plot experiments--in which ecologists monitor the health of a single meadow, forest grove, or pond after manipulating its species counts--but when measured over decades and across regional landscapes as well. The findings can help guide conservation planning and enhance efforts to make human communities more sustainable. (2021-02-11)

Facts on the ground: How microplastics in the soil contribute to environmental pollution
Plastic is a major threat to the environment. Of particular ecological risk is its manifestation as microplastics (<5 mm in size) in the agricultural environment. Scientists from Korea addressed this issue in their latest study, looking into the levels, shapes, and sizes of microplastics in Korean agricultural soils. They reported new insights on the agricultural sources of microplastics, contributing to a better understanding on their role in environmental pollution. (2021-02-11)

Scientists propose three-step method to reverse significant reforestation side effect
Reforestation efforts using a monoculture of a fast-growing tree species, while effective, significantly impact the soil water content of humid, tropical regions and threatens global freshwater supplies. Scientists have now found that the transpiration rate and transpiration-related trait values are up to 10 times greater in the fast-growing species than nearby, dominant slow-growing species. The team has proposed a three-step method for ensuring reforestation efforts in tropical regions don't harm the surrounding soil water content. (2021-02-10)

Research reveals why plant diversity is so important for bee diversity
A study in southern England reveals why bumble bees and honey bees thrive despite foraging on the same flowers. (2021-02-10)

Genetic markers show Pacific albacore intermingle across equator
Analyzing thousands of genetic markers in albacore tuna from the Pacific Ocean, researchers at Oregon State University have learned that just seven dozen of those markers are needed to determine which side of the equator a fish comes from. (2021-02-10)

What's the catch? Algal blooms influence fishing booms
The timing of phytoplankton blooms in the Red Sea could help determine next year's fish catch. (2021-02-10)

Sawfish face global extinction unless overfishing is curbed
Sawfish have disappeared from half of the world's coastal waters and the distinctive shark-like rays face complete extinction due to overfishing, according to a new study by Simon Fraser University researchers, published in Science Advances. (2021-02-10)

Infectious disease causes long-term changes to frog's microbiome
In a rare study published this week, Andrea Jani, a researcher with the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, determined the skin microbiome of an endangered frog was altered when the frogs were infected by a specific fungus, and it didn't recover to its initial state even when the frog was cured of the infection. (2021-02-10)

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