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The Changing Climate and Ecology in Narragansett Bay Candace Oviatt 10/12/12.

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Presentation on theme: "The Changing Climate and Ecology in Narragansett Bay Candace Oviatt 10/12/12."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Changing Climate and Ecology in Narragansett Bay Candace Oviatt 10/12/12

2 NARRAGANSETT BAY Objective To examine some of the local environmental and ecological patterns in Rhode Island waters associated with the recent warming.

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5 Warm CoolWarm Rhode Island Region

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7 Climate Trends in Rhode Island

8 From Nate Vinhateiro PhD Dissertation No Trend in Hurricanes.

9 Changes in the Narragansett Bay 1970s- 1990s Positive North Atlantic Oscillation - Biological Events (Winter water temperature increase of ~ +2.4 C in Narragansett Bay) 1) Winter flounder decrease perhaps due to predation by Crangon (sand shrimp) on the eggs. 2) American lobster and other decapods increase in Rhode Island waters. 3) The winter-spring bloom fails in warms years in Narragansett Bay. 4) Eelgrass beds after some recovery to the 1960s, again decline. 5) Change in jellyfish cycle of abundance: ctenophores become most abundant in early summer in contrast to former early fall abundance and prey upon copepods and larval fish in the water column. 6) Oysters re-populate Narragansett Bay in 1990s; southern oyster disease, Dermo, invades Rhode Island waters. 7) Increase in more southern species, like the smallmouth flounder.

10 Winter flounder decrease perhaps due to predation by Crangon on the eggs and larvae.

11 Collie et al. 2008: Abundance changes at the Fox Island station.

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14 The winter-spring bloom fails in warms years in Narragansett Bay.

15 Figure 4-1. U.S. Coast Survey chart of the Providence River estuary in 1865, with enlargements showing eelgrass. Digitized from a copy provided by the National Archives. B

16 From Nixon files

17 Eelgrass beds now confined to the lower Bay. Bradley and Raposa 2007.

18 Change in jellyfish cycle of abundance: ctenophores become most abundant in early summer in contrast to former early fall abundance and prey upon larval fish in the water column.

19 Chl a Copepods JMJMSN Mnemiopsis leidyi Copepods JMJMSN Chl a Mnemiopsis leidyi Cold WinterWarm Winter

20 Oysters re-populate Narragansett Bay in 1990s; southern oyster disease, Dermo, invades Rhode Island waters.

21 Summary 1) Annual temperature has increased about 1 o C, rainfall has increased about 25%, cloudy days have increased about 20%, and wind speed has decreased by about 20% since the 1950s. 2) New ecological patterns associated with warming in Rhode Island waters include: Decreased northern bottom fish; increased decapods, including lobster. Failure of the winter-spring bloom. Eelgrass decline. Changes in Ctenophore jellyfish cycles.

22 Questions?

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