2022-01-14

The rise of ocean temperature caused by climate change has changed the migration mode of tiger sharks

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tiger shark is the largest cold-blooded top predator in tropical and warm temperate oceans, and its movement is subject to the need to stay in warm waters. Although the waters near the northeast coast of the United States have historically been too cold for tiger sharks, the temperature has significantly warmed in recent years, making them suitable for the growth of tiger sharks

The rise of ocean temperature caused by climate change has changed the migration mode of tiger sharks

the study found that the annual migration of tiger sharks has expanded to the polar region, which is synchronized with the rise of water temperature. These results have an impact on the protection of tiger sharks, because their activities outside marine protected areas may make them more vulnerable to commercial fishing. Hammerschlag and the research team found these climate driven changes by analyzing the tracking data of tiger sharks marked by satellites in the past nine years, combined with the conventional marking and recapture information provided by the cooperative shark marking program of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in recent 40 years and satellite derived sea surface temperature data

the study found that in the past decade, when the ocean temperature was the warmest on record, the migration of tiger sharks would extend about 250 miles (more than 400 kilometers) to the polar region for every one degree Celsius increase in water temperature, and sharks would migrate to the waters off the northeast coast of the United States 14 days in advance. This result may have greater ecosystem impact. In view of the role of tiger sharks as top predators, these changes in tiger shark movement may change the interaction between predators and prey, lead to ecological imbalance, and meet humans more frequently