Seventh Annual Long Island Natural History Conference













The Future is Now: Climate Change and New York Fisheries

Janet Nye, Ph.D.
School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, Stony Brook University

Abstract: We often talk about climate change as something that will happen in the future, but in fact, the climate has already changed and marine ecosystems have responded in a variety of ways. Waters off the Northeast US coast have warmed faster than 99% of the global ocean and have experienced two ocean heatwaves in just the past six years. In response, fish have moved to cooler waters and some populations have declined in abundance. While there are numerous negative impacts to fisheries such as cod and yellowtail flounder, other fisheries like summer flounder and black sea bass have responded favorably to warming. With responsive and more flexible fisheries management, coastal communities can adapt to climate change.

Dr. Nye is an Associate Professor at Stony Brook University School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. She is a quantitative fisheries ecologist interested in the effects of climate variability, climate change including ocean acidification on marine fishes and ecosystems. Her research has focused on how changes in the physical environment scale from individual physiological effects to populations and ecosystems. She is an expert in ecosystem-based fisheries management and teaches courses in Fish Ecology, Biological Oceanography and Scientific Decision Support.