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1 February 2003 The Threat of Climate Change to Freshwater Pearl Mussel Populations
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Abstract
Changes in climate are occurring around the world and the effects on ecosystems will vary, depending on the extent and nature of these changes. In northern Europe, experts predict that annual rainfall will increase significantly, along with dramatic storm events and flooding in the next 50–100 years. Scotland is a stronghold of the endangered freshwater pearl mussel, Margaritifera margaritifera (L.), and a number of populations may be threatened. For example, large floods have been shown to adversely affect mussels, and although these stochastic events were historically rare, they may now be occurring more often as a result of climate change. Populations may also be affected by a number of other factors, including predicted changes in temperature, sea level, habitat availability, host fish stocks and human activity. In this paper, we explain how climate change may impact M. margaritifera and discuss the general implications for the conservation management of this species.
Lee C. Hastie, Peter J. Cosgrove, Noranne Ellis and Martin J. Gaywood "The Threat of Climate Change to Freshwater Pearl Mussel Populations," AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment 32(1), (1 February 2003). https://doi.org/10.1579/0044-7447-32.1.40
Received: 5 December 2001; Accepted: 1 February 2002; Published: 1 February 2003
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