A steady increase in ocean temperatures — nearly 3 degrees Fahrenheit in recent decades — was all it took to doom the once-luxuriant giant kelp forests of eastern Australia and Tasmania: Thick canopies that once covered much of the region’s coastal sea surface have wilted in intolerably warm and nutrient-poor water. Byrnes, J. E., et al., (2011) Climate-Driven Increases in Storm Frequency Simplify Kelp Forest Food Webs. Accessed December 5, 2014. If the water is too warm (warmer than 20 degrees), the kelp does not thrive as well. VII. Australia Broadcasting Corporation (1998) Kelp Forests: Jewels of the Sea. These paradigms hinge on the notion that tropical surface waters are too warm and nutrient-depleted to support kelp productivity and survival. The organisms living in the forest must be able to withstand its temperatures of about 5-20 C 43-72 F. (FILE) A view of the Kelp forest exhibit at the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town, South Africa, 01 June 2016. Giant kelp is abundant in other parts of the world, including California and South Africa. The kelp in the kelp forests is able to support more than 1,000 living organisms in the kelp forests. The water must be clear so that sunlight can reach the ocean floor where the kelp life begins. Conversely, in the southwest Indian Ocean, an eastward range expansion of kelp forests along the coastline of South Africa has been linked with recent ocean cooling trends in the region (Bolton et al., 2012). Excerpt from Of Sea-bamboo, Split-fan kelp and Bladder kelp:Seeing seaweeds in a new light, G. Maneveldt and R.Frans, Veld&Flora. The oldest kelp recipe we know of is for Japanese "kombu", which is made from their local kelp species, most similar to South Africa's split-fan kelp. Global Change Biology 17 (8) 2513–24. Boiling the kombu with fish sauce and water makes dashi - the base for Japanese soup dishes like miso soup. Literature suggests that kelp forests are increasingly threatened by a variety of human impacts, including climate change, overfishing, and direct harvest. Polar Oceans Kelp forests grow best in nutrient-rich, clear waters whose temperatures are between 42–72 degrees F (5–20 degrees C). Kelp forests support diverse and productive ecological communities throughout temperate and arctic regions worldwide, providing numerous ecosystem services to humans. Recent impacts of ocean warming on kelp forest ecosystems in the southeast Indian Ocean have been profound. But it is not just a single species at risk. Underwater kelp forests are … Dinusha R.M. The kelp is shredded and dried or pickled, later used as a base for other meals. Classic marine ecological paradigms view kelp forests as inherently temperate-boreal phenomena replaced by coral reefs in tropical waters. Jayathilake, Mark J. Costello, in Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences, 2019. 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