Carbon Dioxide Impacts Fish Ear Bones

Neon FusiliersNew research, led by David Checkley of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, exposed white sea bass eggs and larvae to waters with high levels of carbon dioxide.  As ocean water absorbs more CO2, it becomes more acidic.  Scientists has already found that increasing acid levels have had a negative impact on shellfish and coral.  Scientists thought to discover that fish would have similar problems with limited bone growth, especially with the growth of otoliths, ears bones that help orientate fish.  Instead, scientists found that otoliths had extensive growth.  While it is unclear what impact this increased bone growth will have, researchers pointed out that such changes would likely have an impact on fish survival.  For more information, see Scientific American.

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