Climate Change Could Alter Key Ocean Bacteria
(Click to enlarge) Trichodesmium bloom off the Great Barrier Reef. (Credit: Wikipedia Commons)
Climate change could put a type of oceanic bacteria into evolutionary overdrive in a way that could pose a threat to its long-term survivability and its important role in the food chain, according to a study published on Tuesday.
(From Scientific American / by Alex Dobuzinskis) — The research published in the journal Nature Communications focuses on trichodesmium, a cyanobacteria found in tropical and subtropical waters such as the Red Sea, the Great Barrier Reef off Australia’s coast, areas around Hawaii and the Caribbean.
Trichodesmium is important to the ocean’s food chain because it converts atmospheric nitrogen gas into biologically usable forms of nitrogen that other organisms, such as phytoplankton, can use. An abundant supply of nitrogen is important to support a wide variety of marine life, from algae to whales.
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