Climate change has devastating effects on biodiversity, forests, human beings and, in general, on natural resources. It can affect in a direct way depleting or deteriorating resources or indirectly through the food chain.
In this case, we are going to talk about the effect of climate change on the food chain. How does climate change affect the food chain and us?
Study on the food chain
Research has been conducted at the University of Adelaide that has found that climate change decreases the efficiency of the food chain because animals decrease their ability to take advantage of resources. Research has emphasized that the increase in CO2 is responsible for acidification and it is this increase that will increase production in various parts of the chain.
Apart from this discovery, it has also determined that the increase in the temperature of the water will cancel the production in other parts of the food chain. This is due to the stress suffered by marine fauna. That is why little by little problems will occur in the food chain that will cause its destruction.
This break in the food chain can have serious consequences for marine ecosystems, because in the future the sea will provide fewer fish for both human consumption and for marine animals that are at the highest part of the chain.
Those most affected by climate change
To see the effect of climate change on the food chain, the research recreated ideal food chains, starting from plants that need light and nutrients to grow, small invertebrates and some predatory fish. In the simulation, this food chain was exposed to levels of acidification and warming similar to those expected at the end of the century. The results were that a high concentration of carbon dioxide promoted the growth of the plants. The more plants, the more small invertebrates and the more invertebrates, the fish can grow faster.
However, the constant temperature rise of the water causes fish are less efficient eaters so they cannot take advantage of the extra energy generated by plants. That is why the fish are hungrier and as the temperature increases they begin to decimate their prey.