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New Research Shows Wide Scope Of Climate Change Impacts

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New research out of the University of Florida shows climate change is affecting all aspects of life on Earth, from entire ecosystems to the genetics of individual animals.

The University of Florida research reveals 80 percent of the Earth’s ecological processes from breeding to migration show signs of adaptation to climate change.

Lead author Brett Scheffers says in one study scientists hatched dormant, century-old eggs of water fleas retrieved from wetland sediments. He says of the hatchlings:

“The individuals 100 years ago are less tolerant to heat. They preferred cooler climates. And the animals living today prefer hotter climates. They’re better able to deal with heat. And so we’ve seen a genetic change in these individuals over time.”

The research shows humans are not immune either, as we grapple with more disease and pest outbreaks and a redistribution of farmland as temperatures and precipitation change.

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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment for WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s work has been heard on NPR and ... Read Full Bio »