Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 8420
Title: Fishery-induced evolution provides insights into adaptive responses of marine species to climate change
Author: Robin S. Waples, Asta Audzijonyte
Publication Year: 2016
Journal: Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
Keywords: Climate change,Fishery-induced evolution,adaptation,life history evolution,temperature,dissolved oxygen
Abstract:

Climate change challenges marine species with seawater that is warmer, with less oxygen and lower pH.  Most climate-change studies have focused on acclimation or shifts in distribution; relatively little is known about the capacity of marine species to respond through evolution.  We propose that important insights can be gained from recent studies of fishery-induced evolution (FIE), which show that increased adult mortality from fishing leads to rapid changes in growth and reproduction schedules.  These changes consistently involve evolution of ‘faster’ life histories:  earlier maturation at smaller size, and shorter lifespan.  In the ocean, coupled effects of higher temperatures and reduced oxygen also differentially affect larger/older individuals, so expected evolutionary consequences of climate change are qualitatively similar to those of FIE.  This general pattern will apply to large numbers of marine species and has important implications for conservation and management.

Theme: Sustainable, safe and secure seafood for healthy populations and vibrant communities
Foci: Provide scientific support to ensure safe seafood for healthy populations and characterize how human activities and climate affect risks from pathogens, chemical contaminants and biotoxins
Official Citation:

Waples, R.S., and Audzijonyte, A.  2016.  Fishery-induced evolution provides insights into adaptive responses of marine species to climate change.  Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 14:217-224..