Chapter 12 – Climate change and multiple stressors

In this review we assess and predict the impacts of climate change on the ecophysiology and distribution of Carcinus maenas—the green or five-spine shore crab—based on research to date on this and other marine invertebrates. Warming is expected to minimally affect C. maenas because of its broad thermal tolerances, planktotrophic development, and capacity for rapid adaptation; however, the embryos and larvae are more sensitive to environmental drivers, so the species may be more restricted than expected by adults alone. The impacts of ocean acidification are mostly expected to be minimal, as for other crustaceans. The osmoregulatory capacity of the euryhaline Carcinus genus means it is already adapted to fluctuating salinities. Furthermore, in many cases the effect of combining environmental drivers seems to minimize their joint impacts on C. maenas. Strong currents and upwelling may enhance recruitment but have less predictable effects. Finally, we echo predictions of further poleward range expansion of C. maenas as the climate warms. We conclude that C. maenas is well positioned to face minimum impacts from global change.

de Rivera C. E. & Heath C. A., 2024. Chapter 12 – Climate change and multiple stressors. In: Weihrauch D. & McGaw I. J. (Eds.), Ecophysiology of the European Green Crab (Carcinus Maenas) and Related Species: Mechanisms Behind the Success of a Global Invader, pp. 261-283. Academic Press. Book chapter (restricted access).

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