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129464 - Adult Antarctic krill proves resilient in a simulated high CO2 ocean.pdf (608.98 kB)

Adult Antarctic krill proves resilient in a simulated high CO2 ocean

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posted on 2023-05-19, 22:52 authored by Ericson, JA, Hellessey, N, So KawaguchiSo Kawaguchi, Stephen NicolStephen Nicol, Peter NicholsPeter Nichols, Hoem, N, Patti VirtuePatti Virtue

Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) have a keystone role in the Southern Ocean, as the primary prey of Antarctic predators. Decreases in krill abundance could result in a major ecological regime shift, but there is limited information on how climate change may affect krill. Increasing anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are causing ocean acidification, as absorption of atmospheric CO2 in seawater alters ocean chemistry. Ocean acidification increases mortality and negatively affects physiological functioning in some marine invertebrates, and is predicted to occur most rapidly at high latitudes. Here we show that, in the laboratory, adult krill are able to survive, grow, store fat, mature, and maintain respiration rates when exposed to near-future ocean acidification (1000–2000 μatm pCO2) for one year. Despite differences in seawater pCO2 incubation conditions, adult krill are able to actively maintain the acid-base balance of their body fluids in near-future pCO2, which enhances their resilience to ocean acidification.


Australian Research Council

Aker BioMarine


Publication title

Communications Biology

Article number









Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Nature Publishing Group

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Rights statement

© 2018 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Understanding climate change not elsewhere classified

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