DNR weekend reading: The impact of climate change on oysters, grasses, plants and forests

Cypress Island NRCA
Cypress Island Natural Resources Conservation Area (NRCA) is managed by DNR. DNR Photo.

National Science Foundation: Ocean Acidification Linked With Larval Oyster Failure in Hatcheries
Marine researchers have linked the collapse of oyster seed production at a commercial oyster hatchery in Oregon to an increase in ocean acidification. The study found that increased seawater carbon dioxide (CO2) levels, resulting in more corrosive ocean water, inhibited the larval oysters from growing at a pace that would make commercial production cost-effective.

National Science Foundation: Climate Change Boosts Then Quickly Stunts Plants, Decade-long Study Shows
Global warming may initially make the grass greener, but not for long, according to new research published this week in the journal Nature Climate Change. Ecologists subjected four grassland ecosystems to simulated climate change during a decade-long study and observed that plants may thrive in the early stages of a warming environment but then begin to deteriorate quickly.

Science Daily: Which Plants Will Survive Droughts, Climate Change?
A UCLA team of life scientists have made a fundamental discovery that allows for the prediction of how diverse plant species and vegetation types worldwide will tolerate drought. The team demonstrated conclusively that it is the saltiness of the cell sap that explains drought tolerance across plant species.

US Forest Service/Pacific Northwest Research Station: A risk assessment of climate change and the impact of forest diseases on forest ecosystems in the Western United States and Canada.
Climate change is projected to have far-reaching environmental impacts both domestically and abroad. A recently published report examines the impact of climate change on forest diseases and how these pathogens will ultimately affect forest ecosystems in the Western United States and Canada.

Oregon State University: Impact of Warming Climate Doesn’t Always Translate to Streamflow
An analysis of 35 headwater basins in the United States and Canada found that the impact of warmer air temperatures on streamflow rates was less than expected in many locations, suggesting that some ecosystems may be resilient to certain aspects of climate change. The lead scientist on the study says the findings indicate that the impacts of climate change are not simple and straightforward.

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