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Biological Response

NOAA's Ocean Acidification Program supports research that focuses on economically and ecologically important marine species. Research of survival, growth, and physiology of marine organisms can be used to explore how aquaculture, wild fisheries, and food webs may change as ocean chemistry changes.


FISHERIES SCIENCE CENTERS

A number of NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service Science Centers have state-of-the-art experimental facilities to study the response of marine organisms to the chemistry conditions expected with ocean acidification.

The Northeast Fisheries Science Center has facilities at its Sandy Hook, NJ and Milford, CT laboratories; the Alaska Fisheries Science Centers at its Newport, OR and Kodiak, AK laboratories; and the Northwest Fisheries Science Center at its Mukilteo and Manchester, WA laboratories. All facilities can tightly control carbon dioxide and temperature. The Northwest Fisheries Science Center can also control oxygen, and can create variable treatment conditions for carbon dioxide, temperature, and oxygen. These facilities include equipment for seawater carbon chemistry analysis, and all use standard operating procedures for analyzing carbonate chemistry to identify the treatment conditions used in experiments.

 


Corals

Both deep sea and shallow reef-building corals have calcium carbonate skeletons.  As our oceans become more acidic, carbonate ions, which are an important part of calcium carbonate structures, such as these coral skeletons, become relatively less abundant. Decreases in seawater carbonate ion concentration can make building and maintaining calcium carbonate structures difficult for calcifying marine organisms such as coral.

 


Fish

Increased levels of carbon dioxide in our ocean can have a wide variety of impacts on fish, including altering behavior, otolith (a fish's ear bone) formation, and young fish's growth. Find out more about what scientists are learning about ocean acidification impacts on fish like rockfish, scup, summer flounder, and walleye pollock.


Shellfish

Shellfish, such as oyster, clams, crabs and scallop, provide food for marine life and for people, too. Shellfish make their shells or carapaces from calcium carbonate, which contains carbonate ion as a building block. The decreases in seawater carbonate ion concentration expected with ocean acidification can make building and maintaining calcium carbonate structures difficult for calcifying marine organisms like shellfish. This may impact their survival, growth, and physiology, and, thus, the food webs and economies that depend on them.


Plankton

Plankton are tiny plants and animals that many marine organisms, ranging from salmon to whales, rely on for nutrition. Some plankton have calcium carbonate structures, which are built from carbonate ions. Carbonate ions become relatively less abundant as the oceans become more acidic. Decreases in seawater carbonate ions can make building and maintaining shells and other calcium carbonate structures difficult for calcifying marine organisms such as plankton. Changes to the survival, growth, and physiology of plankton can have impacts throughout the food web.


OAP SUPPORTED BIOLOGICAL RESPONSE PROJECTS

Stone Crab Fishery Could be Challenged by Ocean Acidification, Study Suggest

Stone Crab Fishery Could be Challenged by Ocean Acidification, Study Suggest

Mote Marine Laboratory

The first study on Florida stone crabs and ocean acidification was published this month by a Mote Marine Laboratory scientist and offers clues for relieving environmental stress on these tasty and economically valuable crabs.
Saturday, March 31, 2018
New Video on Ocean Acidification: Salmon and the Puget Sound

New Video on Ocean Acidification: Salmon and the Puget Sound

Tiffany Grunzel, University of Washington Communications Leadership Program

Ocean acidification could have deep impacts for salmon in the Puget Sound. 

Tiffany Grunzel from the University of Washington Communications Leadership program, interviews Dr. Shallin Busch (NOAA), Dr. Chase Williams (UW), and Robert Purser Jr. (Susquamish Fisheries) about the direct and indirect impacts of ocean acidification on salmon and what this could mean for tribal culture and the seafood industry.

A link to the video can be found here

Saturday, December 16, 2017
Categories: OA News
Mukilteo scientist tries to discover why C02 is hurting oceans

Mukilteo scientist tries to discover why C02 is hurting oceans

HeraldNet

Shallin Busch is a Mukilteo-based ecologist whose research is linking ocean acidification to the deteriorating health of the Puget Sound ecosystem. The Mukilteo team has looked at or is looking at ocean acidification effects on krill, salmon, Dungeness crab, black cod and pteropod (marine snails). So far it has found that lower pH levels lead to lower survival and slower development rates, as well as changes in behavior. 
Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Federal Funding Opportunity: Understanding Climate Impacts on Fish Stocks and Fisheries to Inform Sustainable Management

Climate Program Office

The NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR), Climate Program Office and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Office of Science and Technology have established a partnership to advance understanding of climate-related impacts on fish or other species that support economically important fisheries. The goal is to inform sustainable fisheries management and promote resilience of the nation’s fish stocks and fisheries in a changing climate.

For FY17, this OAR/NMFS partnership, through the Coastal and Ocean Climate Applications (COCA) Program, will continue to take a regional approach to improving the resilience and adaptation of fisheries in a changing climate by soliciting proposals under two competitions. The first competition solicits proposals for projects in the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem (CCLME) and the second competition solicits proposals for projects in the Northeast Shelf Large Marine Ecosystem (NESLME). Through this announcement, it is estimated that approximately $2.2 million will be available in FY2017 for new awards pending budget appropriations. For competition I, projects can request up to $700,000 a year for three years, for a total of $2.1 million over three years. For competition II, projects can request up to $500,000 a year for three years for a total of $1.5 million over three years.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Postdoctoral Opportunity: Fisheries Oceanography and Eastern Boundary Upwelling Ecosystems

University of South Carolina

The University of South Carolina (Columbia, South Carolina, USA) and the Belle W. Baruch Institute for Marine and Coastal Sciences is seeking a postdoctoral fellow, funded by the Nippon Foundation-Nereus Program, to join our interdisciplinary team of researchers to explore the responses of forage fish populations in eastern boundary upwelling ecosystems to physical and biogeochemical variability associated with future climate change. The goal of the project is estimation of fisheries productivity given projected changes in upwelling intensity and seasonality, nutrient stoichiometry, acidification, and plankton production and composition.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016
Categories: Job Postings
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