Talks to resume over Ross Sea
Delegations from 25 nations resumed talks on the New Zealand-US proposal for a marine protected area (MPA) in Antarctica’s Ross Sea this week. The proposed MPA was been scaled back from 2.27 million square kilometers to 1.34 million sq km after a decision was couldn’t be reached at the last special meeting of the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) in July. If created, this would still be the largest single MPA in the world. The current proposal includes a 50-year “sunset clause” that would allow the Ross Sea reserve agreement to be revised or scrapped if enough countries felt it wasn’t working. A decision is expected by November 1. You can see the location of the proposed MPA here. Check back soon for updates.
Tiny sea creatures are heading for extinction, and could take local fisheries with them
A species of cold water plankton in the North Atlantic is headed for extinction and it may take local fisheries with it. The plankton, Calanus finmarchicus, are struggling to adapt to changes in ocean temperature. Over a 50-year period (50 generations), C. finmarchicus contracted its range because it was not able to adapt to warmer waters. They are a vital food source for fish like cod and hake and so if cold water plankton continue to become scarcer fish populations will suffer.
The secrets behind the songs of humpback whales
Researchers still don’t know exactly what humpback whales are saying, but they are getting a better idea of why humpbacks sing. Check out this great segment on CBS about humpback whale songs with marine biologist Nan Hauser.
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