Can Plastic Pollution Cause Climate Change?

An interesting review titled “The Fundamental Links Between Climate Change and Marine Plastic Pollution” describes the interactive relationship between climate change and marine plastic pollution. The review’s authors claim that climate change and marine plastic pollution are linked in three ways: a) the production of plastic relies on fossil fuel extraction and is thus greenhouseContinue reading “Can Plastic Pollution Cause Climate Change?”

How Has Climate Change Affected Yellowstone Amphibians?

A new study authored, published in the science journal Ecology Indicators, highlights how environmental changes in Yellowstone National Park are leading to habitat loss for some amphibian species. As environments continue to heat up and dry out, certain amphibians that move across Yellowstone will likely experience increasing loss of habitable zones. Authors of the studyContinue reading “How Has Climate Change Affected Yellowstone Amphibians?”

Climate Change Impacts on Seabirds and Marine Mammals

A new review published in Ecology Letters, a peer-reviewed scientific journal, assessed seabird and marine mammals’ responses to climate change and climate variability. Researchers based their analysis on data from more than 480 preexisting studies and found that “the likelihood of concluding that climate change had an impact increased with study duration”. In other words,Continue reading “Climate Change Impacts on Seabirds and Marine Mammals”

Ecology of Fungi

Fungi- (singular; fungus) have a true nucleus, meaning that they are eukaryotic organisms and reproduce (both sexually and asexually) by spores. Fungal spores are primarily disseminated through wind. Fungi have crucial ecological roles in transporting nutrients through underground fungal hyphae networks, decomposing dead biomass material and serving as food for some mammals, including us humans.Continue reading “Ecology of Fungi”

Ecological Community: Networks of Interacting Species

An ecological community is defined as a group species that inhabit the same place and interact with each other in various combinations. In ecology, communities are the biotic components of an environment, including its Archaebacteria, Eubacteria, Fungi, Protista, Plantae and Animalia, these are the six known kingdoms of Earth’s biosphere. The organisms that share a closeContinue reading “Ecological Community: Networks of Interacting Species”

What Environmental DNA (eDNA) Reveals About Migration From The Ocean Twilight Zone

So-called twilight zones, also known as disphotic zones or mesopelagic zones, house vast populations of unexploited fish and unexplored habitats, which make these aquatic regions extraordinarily interesting to marine researchers and conservationists. Environmental DNA metabarcoding may prove useful for learning about organisms that live down in ocean twilight zones and how these species travel. EquallyContinue reading “What Environmental DNA (eDNA) Reveals About Migration From The Ocean Twilight Zone”

Whales As Ecosystem Engineers

A new study published in Nature sheds light on the roles whales play in marine ecosystems. Researchers used metabolic models to estimate whale feeding volumes. Whale tagging and acoustic acoustic measurements were used to calculate whale prey densities in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Southern Oceans. Their results suggest that previous assessments greatly underestimated baleen whaleContinue reading “Whales As Ecosystem Engineers”

What Are Ecosystem Services?

Ecosystems services are benefits to human welfare made possible by processes of the natural world. Modern livelihoods depend on nature for various services, materials and ingredients. Micro-bacteria in marine ecosystems produce oxygen. Plants and soils regulate our climate through capturing and storing carbon dioxide in the air. Wetlands curb flooding for coastal territories. Medicines areContinue reading “What Are Ecosystem Services?”

Environmental DNA Sampling In Conservation

Environmental deoxyribonucleic acid, also known as environmental DNA or EDNA, is a method of surveying distribution patterns and population sizes for species within an ecological community. eDNA makes use of genetic deposits that organisms leave behind. Ecologists use hair, fecal matter, feathers and any other forensic like evidence that they can find in an environment.Continue reading “Environmental DNA Sampling In Conservation”

What Is Mycorrhizae And Why Is It Important?

Mycorrhiza is a term that refers to the mutually beneficial exchange between plants and fungi which takes place underground. The interconnections between fungal mycelium and plant roots is perhaps one the most vital symbiotic relationships for life on Earth. Once mycelium fills the tight spaces between plants roots, it can exchange nutrients like phosphorous andContinue reading “What Is Mycorrhizae And Why Is It Important?”