Climatic conditions are changing at an unprecedented rate, affecting mainly fish, amphibians and reptiles, ectothermic animals that are unable to generate their own internal heat. With heat waves and rising temperatures, these organisms experience not only increased growth rates and heat stress, but also further ageing.
The acidification of the oceans is recorded in the crystals of the coral skeleton. This is a new tool for studying past environmental changes and combating climate change. Such is the main conclusion of a study led by the Spanish scientist Ismael Coronado Vila, from the Institute of Paleobiology in Warsaw (Poland).
Widely distributed throughout Eurasia and North America, the weasel –the smallest species among mustelids– shows no apparent problems. But a study conducted in the last two decades reveals that this small carnivore is becoming less frequent in the northeast of our country due to the change in land use and climate change.
Spanish researchers have developed a system that tracks human displacement caused by climate change using the tracks of mobile phones. With this model, which was tested during a severe drought in Colombia in 2014, it was determined that the portion of the population that migrated due to this event was 10% during the six months of the study.
Several coastal cities of the USA and China are in danger due to sea-level rise that will take place if adaptation measures against climate change are not taken. A study led by the Basque Center for Climate Change on the 120 largest cities in the world warns of the fate that will run large cities such as New Orleans, Canton, Shanghai, Boston and New York.
In every animal community, several species in the same group share habitats. An international team, including scientists from Catalonia in Spain, has chosen ants to create the largest public-access database on the cohabitation of these insects. The goal is to understand their tricks for coexistence and how they respond to invasive species and climate change.
The Iberian Peninsula is undergoing climate change, with temperatures on the rise, and mountain ranges are not exempt from this trend. A team of scientists has analysed regional climate series from the Central Pyrenees for 1910 to 2013 (the most extensive climate records to date for the area), concluding that temperatures have risen at an increasing rate since 1970, particularly in spring and summer.
Most bird chicks need parental care to survive. In biparental species the chicks have greater chances of success if both parents participate in this task, especially under hostile situations. An international team of scientists has revealed that when temperatures rise, males and females in pairs of plovers shift incubation more frequently.
Climate change is currently one of the greatest threats to biodiversity, and one of the groups of animals most affected by the increase in temperature is amphibians. A team of scientists with Spanish participants studied how heat waves affect the dietary choices of three species of amphibian found on the Iberian Peninsula: the European tree frog, the Mediterranean tree frog and the Iberian painted frog.
Storms generate heavy swell, putting ports at risk; this problem is compounded by rising sea level caused by climate change. A team of scientists analysed the impact of this phenomenon in Catalonia, concluding that the number of ports affected will double by the year 2100.