Intense Ocean Heatwaves Are Threatening the Underwater Species

The ocean heatwaves are becoming torrid at a rapid rate. The severe heatwaves cause health disorders such as dehydration or stroke among humans. Similarly, the heatwaves are casting a shadow on the underwater marine species to a large extent.

“Marine heatwaves – A significant reason for marine species downfall”

Studies by experts have revealed that marine heatwaves have been increasing expeditiously since the past many decades. It clearly indicates the alarming rate at which the temperature is rising around the world and its negative impacts on biodiversity. 

Marine Heatwaves

It is a phase wherein the average temperature of the water at a specific region increase drastically. The study opens up on the fact that in the previous 30 days, the marine heatwaves have increased by around 54% and there has been a consistent decline in the life span of the marine species.

The Blob

Have you heard of the term? It is a vast marine heat wave and is made up of a large volume of warm water, which was present off the US region. The study consisted of the Western Coast in the US during the years of 2014-2016. From the aquatic mammals to the invertebrates, ‘The Blob’ was responsible for the massive havoc caused in the marine life of this region.

Daniel Smale, an author of the conducted study as well as an ecologist, states “The extreme warming conditions can create abrupt changes in the complete ecosystem with numerous significant consequences”. He also further added that the negative effects of marine heatwaves have been drastically affecting the fish, corals, mammals, seabirds, and other multiple species.

It has been significantly noted that in the past few years, most of the tropical corals have experienced the adverse and dangerous effects of ‘bleaching’.

According to notable scientists, the marine heatwaves have emerged as the major source of marine destruction. It has the potential to reshape the complete aquatic or marine ecosystem, leading to the vast destruction of food supplies across many regions and transforming livelihoods.

What Exactly Happened?

During the year of 2005, there occurred a major loss of the Caribbean Corals. Half of the corals were found dead on the Great Barrier Reef. If the corals face death, they will no longer be able to support the fish or other aquatic species that survive on the reef. The tropical storms comprise an extraordinary potential to destruct the coral reefs on a large scale as they won’t be able to safeguard the shores from the waves.

Studies have also revealed that there has been a decline in the fish species as a majority of the fishes have seemed to disappear. There has been a 4% decline in the worldwide population of the fish species which were taken for consumption by the humans. A high loss of the coral reefs or the seagrass beds can increase the amount of carbon dioxide present in the air.


The ocean life is facing a high range of assorted threats such as ocean acidification and pollution caused by plastics. But the severely occurred warming happenings can bring about a drastic shift in the complete ecosystem. Smale also predicts that these threats would be existing for a longer time in the near future.

The prime ways of dealing with the situation are to track ocean warming in real time and the presence of successful climate-conscious fishery management. It, in turn, helps to reduce the various impacts caused by the warming happenings during the period. The climate changes would definitely have an impact on marine life, but it should be dealt in the best way.