Thousands of birds die in the Bering Sea. Arctic heating may be blamed

Science

It seems that thousands of holes and other seabirds on the Bering Sea have died in the winter of 2016-2017 Birds look like they are starving to death, but the culprit is climate change, say scientists.

From October 2016 to January 2017 more than 350 birds die, most of them washing taftini on the beach on St. Island. Paul, Alaska, Bering Sea. Birds have faded and many of them bleed when they die. The period in which birds grow new feathers is a very strong moment for buhaltsi and other birds because animals need additional food while being unable to fly.

Status of bird body starvation as a cause of death, according to researcher Timothy Jones, a biologist at the University of Washington in Seattle, reported on May 29 in PLoS ONE. Based on the speed and direction of the Bering Sea during the fall and winter, and the number of bodies stranded on the island of St. Paul, but not on the neighboring island, researchers estimate that between 3150 and 8800 birds died during this time

Death is likely caused by an increase in sea surface temperature in the eastern Bering Sea as a result of man-made climate change. In the past, melting sea ice in the summer has helped heat from plankton, which forms the basis of food nets in the sea (SN: 3/16/19, p.20). However, in recent years, sea ice on the Bering Sea has been rare and has fewer plankton flowers. This has a cascade effect through seafood networks, including the reduction of several small fish species such as mosaics and herring, which eat beans.

Hunger may have been the cause of the recent mass death of seabirds in the area, such as death, auk, and kittens.

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