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Top Story

Rising ocean temperatures threaten baby lobsters

If water temperatures in the Gulf of Maine rise a few degrees by the end of the century, it could mean trouble for lobsters and the industry they support. That’s according to newly published research conducted by National Science Foundation-funded researchers at the University of Maine Darling Marine Center and Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences. The research is the only published study focused on how larvae of the American lobster will be affected by two aspects of climate change: ocean acidification and warming. The study found that acidification had almost no effect on survival of young lobsters. But lobster larvae reared in water 3 degrees Celsius higher in temperature -- which is predicted by 2100 in the Gulf of Maine -- struggled to survive compared to lobster larvae in water that matched current temperatures typical of the western Gulf of Maine.

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