Rising human carbon dioxide emissions may be affecting the brains and central nervous system of sea fishes with serious consequences for their survival, an international scientific team led by Australians has found. Carbon dioxide concentrations predicted to occur in the ocean by the end of this century will interfere with fishes’ ability to hear, smell, turn and evade predators. In their latest paper the researchers report world-first evidence that high CO2 levels in sea water disrupts a key brain receptor in fish, causing marked changes in their behaviour and sensory ability.
Prof Phillip Munday, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University
Nature Climate Change; http://www.coralcoe.org.au/news_stories/braindamage.html