Recent publication on larval lobster in a changing Gulf of Maine

Submitted by Rachel Lasley-Rasher on Fri, 09/23/2016 - 22:35

Effects of temperature and ocean acidification on larval lobster development – UMaine graduate student, Jesica Waller, along with Dr. Rick Wahle and colleagues published a paper on the joint effects of ocean acidification and rising temperature on larval lobster development. Their results suggest that elevated temperatures associated with projected end-century warming trends cause larvae to develop faster but also induce physiological stress, leading to increased mortality rates. Additionally, they found that ocean acidification does not significantly affect survival but causes larvae to increase the speed at which they swim and feed. This work highlights the complex effects of climate change on animal physiology and behavior. It also has important implications for predicting the health of lobster populations in the face of a changing Gulf of Maine. This work was supported in part by Maine Sea Grant as part of a Program Development Grant, DV-15-12 Linking ocean acidification factors to the development of American lobster and was recently highlighted in the Bangor Daily News.