Down under, fish grow up faster

The growth rates of certain species of fish found off Australia’s coast are being affected by climate change, says a recent scientific study.

Ocean fish studied in the waters off Tasmania are growing faster in warmer, shallow waters, according to research conducted by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization.

Sea-temperature increases of nearly 2 degrees Celsius in the waters east of the island were recorded in the study, which included more than 500 fish specimens.

Populations of large marine species are subject to two major stressors: commercial fishing and climate change. Heavy exploitation increases their sensitivity to environmental effects and could be magnifying the effects of long-term climate change and short-term climate variability, concludes the research.