Global warming warning on shellfish: The following headline appeared in the Courier Mail 3 June 2014, p3: “Global warming could wipe shellfish off the menu” with the warning that “oysters, clams and mussels could disappear from menus if their habitats are affected by climate change, researchers warn”. The news item reported a study of the likely changes in geographic distribution of 14 species of shellfish, and included the statement: “Researchers say the animals are unable to shift their habitats and instead will simply die out”. The item gave a reference to the Journal of Biogeography.

On checking the Journal of Biogeography, we found a report about a computer model of mollusc habitat changes using “present-day summaries and future forecasts of climate from the Hadley Centre and known species occurrence data from natural history collections”. The conclusion: “We do not find a coherent pattern of areas with suitable environments expanding at high-latitude range boundaries, with simultaneous contraction at their low-latitude boundaries. Tropical marine molluscs may thus show varied responses as average temperatures warm. These results contrast with trends among terrestrial and other marine species, which are rapidly shifting their ranges to higher latitudes. Conversely, the differing responses of these species to future warming are consistent with responses of species to past episodes of change, as observed in the fossil record”.

Journal of Biogeography

Editorial Comment: Note well: the data basis for this drastic warning is not from the real world but from a computer model. Furthermore, it was based on predictions made by the Hadley Centre, whose track record as weather prophets leave much to be desired (see Weathered Predictions on Climate here).

OUR PREDICTION: Since even the researchers admit, molluscs have survived past episodes of change, and we predict they will continue to do so, especially as most oysters, clams and mussels that appear on menus are farmed, rather than harvested in the wild. What’s our basis? Most molluscs simply release their larvae into the sea where the young float around until they find a suitable place to settle, which includes man-made structures in oyster and shellfish farms. Like coral reefs they will simply shift to where the climate is right! (Ref. marine biology, ecology, predictions)

Evidence News vol. 14, No. 9
4 June 2014

Creation Research Australia