Our Collapsing Marine Food Web

Recently there has been limited coverage in social media circles and to a lesser extent in the MSM about the collapse of the Great Barrier Reef which has been portrayed as another ” Bleaching Event”.

It is not simply a bleaching event, it is the collapse of the marine food web which will  lead to the the extinction of most if not all complex life on this planet.

Another example:  South Florida corals dying in “unprecedented” bleaching and disease.  This article starts:  ‘South Florida’s corals are turning white and contracting fatal diseases in what’s being called an unprecedented die-off across the region’s reefs.

Off Hollywood, scientists witnessed the collapse of a minivan-sized coral colony that had started growing more than three centuries ago, when the Spanish ruled the peninsula. As recently as September, live coral tissue covered 90 percent of the colony’s surface, making it among the oldest living things in the state. By December it was almost completely dead, said Brian Walker, a Nova Southeastern University research scientist, who found widespread mortality in corals in Miami-Dade and Broward counties.’  Continues at above link.

“It’s a difficult idea to convey to the average person who might not understand the ocean ecosystem, but Pepin likens it to walking into a grocery store and instead of seeing the shelves full, they’re only half-full.”
Building blocks of ocean food web in rapid decline as plankton productivity plunges.

———- ———-

Brace for imminent impact.

Professor Guy McPherson and I will be discussing these developments in his November 2016 speaking tour in New Zealand and Australia.

I'm an anti-imperialist, environmental activist and blue ocean sailor, who is passionate about the earth and all it's inhabitants without favour. Brace for imminent impact as we bare witness to the non-linear unraveling of the biosphere and habitability disappearing for most if not all complex life on the only habitable planet we know of. To quote President Niinistö in North Russia: ‘If We Lose the Arctic, We Lose the World’. Folks we have lost the Arctic.

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Posted in Announcements, Climate Science, News, Outrage, Rapid Climate Change, Warnings
53 comments on “Our Collapsing Marine Food Web
  1. Kevin Hester says:

    The perfect storm of abuse.
    NZ’s waters suffering carbonate saturation, hypoxia,nitrogen pollution, the list goes on.


  2. Kevin Hester says:

    “We seem to have gone from an era when mass bleaching was unheard of, to the modern era where it has now occurred three times in 18 years,” Hughes said.”
    There is a 10 to 20 year lag between cause and effect and most of this damage is as a result of emissions from last century.
    In the last 20 years we have emitted more carbon and hence ocean acidification than in the previous 50 years which was more than the previous 100 yrs.
    We are in the exponential unraveling of this disaster and there is nothing that will either save nor give respite to the global reef network.


  3. Kevin Hester says:

    Always remember there is a 10 to 30 year lag in cause and effect from when we emit carbon and when it’s side effects can be witnessed.
    This damage was done last century and our emissions this century are year for year much higher.


  4. Kevin Hester says:

    “An environmental calamity is recorded in Pajaral, in the Caño Large sector.
    Tens of thousands of fish have died and scientists claims it’s from lack of oxygen because of heavy rains.
    It’s the biggest fish kill in ten years and happened on Thursday afternoon in the Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta, raising alarm among fishermen and the community.
    Emergency focuses on Pajaral Swamp, industry Caño Grande jurisdiction of Sitionuevo, where thousands of small fish have died from lack of oxygen.
    Most of the species concerned correspond to smooth, goat and crappie.
    Alfredo Martinez, assistant manager of Corpamag, said on Thursday night when fishermen in the area launched the alarm, the order for a staff proceed to the area to take water samples were given.
    He said the death of the fish is caused by lack of oxygen due to the severe drought that have endured in recent months and then with the arrival of winter.
    The expert says that the fish kill is associated with the rains that remove organic matter is decomposing in the bed and out, consumes oxygen in the swamp.
    “It is precisely this decrease in oxygen and phosphorus in suspension, resulting in the death of the fish,” said marine biologist Sandra Villardy.
    He further commented that the problem will continue because there are four years of accumulated organic matter in that area and fresh water because it is not going to swamp for many reasons.
    He warned that what is dying is the food of humans and what is in check is the work of fishermen.”


  5. Kevin Hester says:

    As the sea ice disappears so does the habitat for the Krill. A keystone species.

    Great doco beneath the ice


  6. Kevin Hester says:

    More evidence on the collapse of the marine food web influencing sea birds who depend on the habitat! 😦


  7. Kevin Hester says:

    More evidence of the collapsing food web;


  8. Kevin Hester says:

    77% of the seal population lost in recent years


  9. Kevin Hester says:

    Only three mother and calf pairs of rare right whales were spotted off the Southeast coast this winter — an alarmingly small number — despite researchers flying all South Carolina waters for the first time since 2012, trying to find more.
    None were spotted here, according to the S.C. Department of Natural Resources.
    The year was the second worst for sightings since research started in the early 1980s, said wildlife biologist Clay George of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.
    Right whales are the rarest of the large whales, 40-ton creatures whose curious two-plume breathing spray and the lack of a dorsal fin distinguish them from other whales. They are massive.
    Hunted to the brink of extinction a century ago, the federal endangered species now numbers 450 to 500 animals in the North Atlantic. The species’ future is still so tenuous that every whale is considered critical to their survival.
    They migrate off the South Carolina coast each winter to calve from summer feeding grounds off the Northeast. They often follow major shipping channels and through waters that might eventually be opened up to oil and natural gas seismic testing and drilling, and across an area the Navy uses for sonar and other training.
    Ship strikes, line entanglements and noise pollution are among the biggest threats. As waters warm in a changing climate, the plankton the whales feed on is diminishing and they might be shifting their grounds.
    “Warmer water could deter whales from an area all together,” said naturalist Melanie White, of the Sea To Shore Alliance aerial survey team. “They could physically become too hot due to their thick layer of blubber which is what also allows them to survive in the colder waters of the North Atlantic Ocean.”
    Shifts in food supply could also be a factor, causing the whales to exert more to find food, she said. That could affect their fertility because the mother must be physically capable of bringing a calf to birth.
    “Whales must first be healthy themselves before they have the potential to create more life,” she said.


  10. Kevin Hester says:

    The feedback loops associated with the loss of sea ice are numerous.
    We are watching the collapse of the marine food web.


  11. Kevin Hester says:

    “The fish stocks in the Mediterranean Sea are in deep trouble. The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre has found that 93% of assessed fish stocks are overexploited, and some are almost completely gone. At between 10 000 to 12 000 species, the Mediterranean sea contains 7 to 10% of the world’s marine biodiversity. Not to mention that it is an economically important fishery.”


  12. Kevin Hester says:

    “Toxic or harmful algal blooms are not a new phenomenon, although many people may know them by other names such as red tides. These events can sicken or kill people who consume toxin-contaminated shellfish, and can damage marine ecosystems by killing fish and other marine life,” says Christopher Gobler,



  13. hello Kevin, I guess boat people have a closer tie with the natural world than most. I grew up on the coast and started fishing at a young age. moved on to the commercial fishing industry. in the start we could catch fish until we were exhausted. now there virtually is no fishery. I grew up on the B.C. coast very close to this news flash. I got out of the system in 2006, fearing a financial collapse, I did save my pension. since then I have witnessed, fish die offs, bird die offs, massively. the most striking to me was the effects of season creep. the animals that r4elied on a certain food source were caught completely off guard. the changing rain patterns are also causing havoc. I presently reside in Chiapas Mexico. cheers mate.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. this might be of interest – its worldwide – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hlPbXBDSNA


  15. Kevin Hester says:

    “The bigger implication is it’s no longer in the future; it’s happening now,” said Matear.



  16. Kevin Hester says:

    We are losing at least 200 species per day. When we lose ‘keystone’ species we risk systemic collapse. Phytoplankton are Keystone species and collapse is underway like it or lump it. The new denier position is to deny abrupt climate change and collapse.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. David Luce says:

    It’s becoming a challenge to know how to arrange one’s time given the circumstances.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Kevin Hester says:

    “The team surveyed zooplankton populations before, and 1 hour after, setting off an airgun near the south-east coast of Tasmania in Australia. They found that the sound burst created a 2-kilometre-wide “hole” in the zooplankton population. Within this area, zooplankton abundance dropped by two-thirds and the number of dead zooplankton more than doubled.”
    Our extinction wish takes another hit.


  19. Kevin Hester says:

    Stupid sapiens grasping at straws while still attached to the sinking Titanic.


  20. Kevin Hester says:

    “Worse still, the effects of acidification can intensify the effects of global warming, in a dangerous feedback loop.”



  21. Kevin Hester says:

    Industrial sapiens have turned our oceans into an irradiated, plastic infused acidic soup that is quickly becoming uninhabitable. Acidification is but one symptom of the malaise it faces.Over half of the human populations protein and 3/4 of our oxygen emanate from the oceans. The perfect storm is brewing now, not far off in the future. Dahr mentions the warm water coral reefs and their role as incubators of the marine food web. We are one El Nino away from the Great Barrier Reef suffering the death blow, yet still Australia is addicted to the cashflow of the coal industry. They will go to any length to preserve their billion dollar planet killing industry.


  22. Kevin Hester says:

    Ocean acidification, just one of the multitude of threats to complex life;

    Click to access BIOACID_brochure_e_web.pdf


  23. Kevin Hester says:

    “Climate change preview? Pacific Ocean ‘blob’ appears to take toll on Alaska cod
    Originally published November 4, 2017 at 7:02 pm Updated November 4, 2017 at 8:50 pm”


  24. Kevin Hester says:

    “It’s clear that we have a severe conservation crisis on our hands,” said Aaron Hill, executive director of the Watershed Watch Salmon Society”



  25. Kevin Hester says:

    The dying west coast of the U.S! Now cod populations have nose-dived joining the list of seabirds, seals, whales, salmon, sardines, starfish, dolphins and tuna.


  26. Kevin Hester says:

    If we manage to wipe out this bacteria we will lose this aspect of the carbon sink;


  27. Kevin Hester says:

    “It’s interesting to note that the ocean is a sea of various bacteria and now [cancer] cells that are capable of being pathogens,” he told The Independent. “I guess it’s a kind of change of thinking, that there are contagious cells floating around in the sea that can colonise a susceptible host.”


  28. Kevin Hester says:

    Co of Ivan Noke;
    “About a quarter of the carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere is currently taken up by the oceans, where it reacts with seawater and forms carbonic acid.
    This “acidification” of global oceans is observed as lower pH levels.
    Since preindustrial times, the average pH of ocean surface water fell from 8.21 to 8.10.
    While that does not sound like much, that is a 30 percent increase in acidity, and it could decrease another 0.3 pH units by the end of the century.
    At that rate, it would create an ocean more acidic than any seen in the past 100 million years.”



  29. Kevin Hester says:

    Wow, this is almost a book length article but considering it spectacularly covers the death of the oceans we came from it’s a must read.


  30. Kevin Hester says:

    “Ocean acidification to hit levels not seen in 14 million years”



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Kevin Hester

Kevin Hester is currently living on Rakino Island, a small island in the Hauraki Gulf near Auckland, New Zealand, monitoring the unravelling of the biosphere and volunteering at the Rakino Island Nursery is currently developing a proposal to create a marine reserve near by. The Island has no grid tied electricity or reticulated water.  I catch my own water from the roof and generate my electricity from the ample solar radiation on the island.

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