The Beacon

Ocean News: Crude Oil Affects Mahi-Mahi, Arctic Migratory Birds Breeding Earlier, and More

The pectoral sandpiper breeds in the Arctic and winters in Central and South America. (Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr Creative Commons)

- NOAA found that delisting the central north Pacific population of humpback whales from the Endangered Species Act could be warranted after a positive 90-day review. The state of Alaska issued a petition in February to delist this population. Alaska Dispatch

- A new study found that exposure to crude oil affects swimming performance in juvenile mahi-mahi. Scientists exposed larvae to crude oil from the 2010 BP oil spill, and found they experienced a 37% decrease in swimming velocity. Marine Science Today

- Migratory birds that breed in Arctic Alaska are nesting earlier each spring, according to a new study. The authors attribute this shift to earlier snow melt patterns in the Arctic. EurekAlert

- At the opening of a conference this week, the United Nations warned that plastic garbage in the oceans has become such an issue that it’s causing $13 billion a year in damage to marine life, tourism, and fisheries. The U.N. Environment Program Chief said that the best way to tackle this issue is at its source, and to always “reduce, reuse, and recycle.”

Long Read:

-When North Carolina Outer Banks residents were told sea levels would rise by nearly forty inches at the end of the century, many were in disbelief. North Carolina’s new legislature reduced that prediction to eight inches, but residents and officials are still debating the likelihood of sea level rise, and whether mitigation plans are necessary. The Washington Post

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