Current drought conditions contributing to historically dry year

Turlock Journal — The local region’s current water year is shaping up to be one of the driest on record according to Turlock Irrigation District, with below-average rainfall amplifying California’s existing state of drought. Data provided by TID Hydrologist Olivia Cramer during Tuesday’s Board of Directors meeting showed that from September 2020 through Jan. 10, 2021, the Tuolumne River Read More…

Atmospheric river wallops Pacific Northwest with flooding, landslides…

Washington Post — Because of the high winds, more than 600,000 customers were without power in the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday morning (about 540,000 in Washington, and 74,000 in Oregon), according to PowerOutage.us. At its peak Tuesday, the atmospheric river was trucking ashore 665 million gallons of moisture every hour, about a quarter of the flow rate of the Mississippi River. Read More…

“Salmon cannon” successor automatically shoots fish up over dams

New Atlas — Back in 2014, we heard about a so-called "fish gun" or "salmon cannon" that safely shot spawning fish up over river-blocking obstacles such as dams. Its successor is now in use, offering a couple of key advantages over the original system. Manufactured by Seattle-based Whooshh Innovations, the salmon cannon's actual name was the Whooshh Transport System. To recap our previous Read More…

Researchers say Europe’s ban on throwing unwanted fish overboard is…

Science Magazine — Two years ago, a law banning the wasteful practice of tossing unwanted fish overboard came fully into effect in European waters. But a study reveals the law, intended to reduce overfishing, has led to the opposite: To allay industry concerns, regulators have significantly increased fishing quotas, while providing ever more exemptions that make the policy even more Read More…

Baby sharks emerge from egg cases earlier and weaker in oceans warmed…

The Guardian — Baby sharks will emerge from their egg cases earlier and weaker as water temperatures rise, according to a new study that examined the impact of warming oceans on embryos. About 40% of all shark species lay eggs, and the researchers found that one species unique to the Great Barrier Reef spent up to 25 days less in their egg cases under temperatures expected by the end of the Read More…

The Diminishing California ‘Fossil Water’

Nature World News — When hearing the word 'Fossil,' most people automatically think about dinosaur bones or frozen remains from the ice age, while others may immediately think about fuels. But, those are not the kind of 'fossils' that will be highlighted in this article.  Because buried deep within the earth, another type of fossil is unknown to many, one produced by ancient aquifers like Read More…

Big differences in how coral reef fish larvae are dispersed

ScienceDaily — Right after most coral reef fish hatch, they join a swirling sea of plankton as tiny, transparent larvae. Then currents, winds and waves disperse them, frequently to different reefs. During seven years of surveys of coral reef-dwelling clownfish, scientists measured how the dispersal of larvae varied over the years and seasonally, including during monsoons, according Read More…

Ocean acidification may make some species glow brighter

ScienceNews — A more acidic ocean could give some species a glow-up. As the pH of the ocean decreases as a result of climate change, some bioluminescent organisms might get brighter, while others see their lights dim, scientists report January 2 at the virtual annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. Bioluminescence is de rigueur in parts of the ocean (SN: Read More…

Ocean Acidification is Transforming California Mussel Shells

UC San Diego News — The large mollusk known as the California mussel makes its home in the rocky shoreline along the Pacific Coast from Mexico to Alaska. Considered a “foundational” animal, Mytilus californianus provides homes for hundreds of other species and offers a rich food source for species ranging from spiny lobsters to humans. As the waters off our coasts change due to human Read More…

Award-winning Thai community continues the fight to save its wetland…

Mongabay — Srongpol Chantharueang remembers his parents telling him as a boy always to protect the local wetland forest when he grew up. They told him that the ecosystem would be important for his life and that of his community. “I didn’t understand what they meant at the time,” he told Mongabay via a video call in December 2020. “I didn’t understand what the true value of the Read More…