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Heatwave with the nickname “the blob” caused millions of marine animals to die of hunger

REVEALED: Heat wave nicknamed “the blob” caused millions of marine animals to die off the Pacific coast by depleting their food supply

  • In 2013-2016, hundreds of thousands of birds washed ashore on the Pacific coast
  • Experts discovered that there was a heat wave in the area that raised the water temperature
  • Oceans increased by 13 degrees Fahrenheit and caused harmful algal blooms
  • The flowers are poisonous to ocean life and are important food sources for other animals
  • Experts say that 1.2 million birds died and hundreds of thousands of other animals

Scientists blame climate change for the deaths of millions of animals along the Pacific coast.

A mysterious heat wave, nicknamed ‘the blob’, stretched from Alaska to Mexico and raised the temperature of the ocean water by 13 degrees Fahrenheit in 2013 through 2016.

The warm temperatures caused algal blooms that are toxic to marine life and eventually destroyed food supplies – causing creatures to die of hunger.

Data from beach surveys showed that an estimated 1.2 million birds and hundreds of sea lions, vinwales and sea otters died during the three-year period.

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A mysterious heat wave, nicknamed 'the blob', stretched from Alaska to Mexico and raised the temperature of the ocean water by 13 degrees Fahrenheit in 2013 through 2016. The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, of which murres (photo ) survived

A mysterious heat wave, nicknamed ‘the blob’, stretched from Alaska to Mexico and raised the temperature of the ocean water by 13 degrees Fahrenheit in 2013 through 2016. The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, of which murres (photo ) survived

By the end of 2015, the fishing industry in the Pacific and the marine food chain were closed.

The following year, around 62,000 bird carcasses washed ashore on the beaches along the west coast – most of them in Alaska and specifically of the Murre population

However, experts believe that many of the bodies have never reached the coast and estimate that 530,000 to 1.2 million birds actually died during the heat wave.

According to an article published in PLOS ONE, there are two factors that caused murder populations to plummet.

Experts believe that many of the bodies have never reached the coast and estimate that 530,000 to 1.2 million birds actually died during the heat wave. Bird carcasses were all found along the Pacific coast

Experts believe that many of the bodies have never reached the coast and estimate that 530,000 to 1.2 million birds actually died during the heat wave. Bird carcasses were all found along the Pacific coast

Experts believe that many of the bodies have never reached the coast and estimate that 530,000 to 1.2 million birds actually died during the heat wave. Bird carcasses were all found along the Pacific coast

The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, on which murres survived.

The second factor was that higher ocean temperatures accelerated the metabolism of larger fish competing for food.

Experts warn that this death will have long-term consequences for the population and two-thirds of the murdered ones were adults – a “substantial blow” to the breeding populations.

In 2014, scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recorded a temperature rise of 13 degrees Fahrenheit off the coast of Newport Oregon in just one hour.

The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, on which murres survived. The second factor was that higher ocean temperatures accelerated the metabolism of larger fish competing for food

The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, on which murres survived. The second factor was that higher ocean temperatures accelerated the metabolism of larger fish competing for food

The warm ocean water reduced the quantity and quality of phytoplankton, on which murres survived. The second factor was that higher ocean temperatures accelerated the metabolism of larger fish competing for food

In addition to birds, experts discovered hundreds of sea lions, vinwales and sea otters who also perished during the three-year period

In addition to birds, experts discovered hundreds of sea lions, vinwales and sea otters who also perished during the three-year period

In addition to birds, experts discovered hundreds of sea lions, vinwales and sea otters who also perished during the three-year period

Although hot water comes – it warms up a bit from the sun and then cools down at night – the big peak was anything but normal.

Chelle Gentemann, a NOAA scientist who studied the blob, said: “The timing of this hot event indicated that it was not due to normal daily warming, but that it was really due to advection [spreading] of a warm piece of water in the buoy area.

“And that warm water was from the blob”

Gentemann and her colleagues discovered that prolonged heat from the blob, combined with unusually weak coastal winds, made it difficult to wade up much of the Pacific coast during the heat wave at sea.

“It prevented the winter storms from touching the west coast,” said Gentemann.

“Storms typically herald windier weather along the coast, turning over the ocean surface and promoting upwelling.”

“There were just no storms. It was just sunny all winter. “

She also explains that because there were fewer storms, there was less wind and upwelling, which meant that fewer nutrients for fish were a food source for many of the animals.

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