Bodega Bay (CA) scientists weigh impact of ocean acid levels on shellfish

Related to our threads on ocean acidification, and it’s possible impact on our multimillion dollar shellfish industry.
9/6 Press Democrat

The danger from increasing levels of acid in the ocean, which could devastate California’s shellfish industry, is under investigation by Bodega Bay scientists.

It is painstaking work that requires the team to wade through knee-deep mud at Tomales Bay to collect native Olympic oysters and then raise their young in salt-water tanks under conditions that mimic climate change.

“Very little is known about how ocean acidification is unfolding, other than it is,” said Susan Williams, director of the Bodega Marine Laboratory, which is part of UC Davis. “We are already seeing dramatic effects.”

The evidence is seen in the dissolving shells of some mollusks and disappearing mussel beds. And researchers, with the backing of more than $4 million in University of California and federal funds, are trying to identify the long-term consequences of the ocean’s changing chemistry.

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