Saturday, July 20, 2024

Global Fisheries Under Threat From Climate Change


A new study has found that the diet of fish worldwide could decline in quality by around 10% due to climate change.

The researchers from Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the University of Queensland, University of Tasmania and University of NSW studied the effects of climate change on Zooplankton, a major link in the seafood food chain. The plankton provides nutrition for creatures as diverse as whales and jellyfish.

The researchers found that climate change can substantially affect the quality of Zooplankton in our oceans.

Commenting on the work-study lead, Dr. Ryan Heneghan from QUT School of Mathematical Sciences said:

“Despite their abundance, diversity and critical importance in transferring energy from phytoplankton to fish, knowledge about what shapes the composition of zooplankton communities across the world’s oceans is relatively limited. This is a challenge, since if Zooplankton are affected by climate change, this could have important implications for the ocean’s ability to sequester carbon emissions, and the productivity of fisheries.”

Heneghan added:

“We used the model to project changes in the zooplankton community in response to climate change, and then assess how these changes could affect the diet quality of small fish — the primary predators of Zooplankton beyond the Zooplankton themselves. We found future climate change drives shifts in the composition of zooplankton communities across most of the world’s oceans. These changes were mostly caused by decreases in the size of phytoplankton under climate change. In the oceans, energy is transferred from microscopic plankton up to fish and whales by size-based predation — big things eating small things.”

You can find the original research here.

Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy is a TDI/SDI Instructor Trainer, and PADI Staff and Trimix Instructor. Diving for 28 years, a dive pro for 14, I have traveled extensively chasing my passion for diving. I am passionate about everything diving, with a keen interest in exploration, Sharks and big stuff, Photography and Decompression theory. Diving is definitely the one and only passion that has stayed with me my whole life! Sam is a Staff Writer for