How does rising atmospheric CO2 affect marine organisms?

Click to locate material archived on our website by topic

Penguins and Climate Change: Some Like It (Relatively) Hot
Sun, L., Xie, Z. and Zhao, J.  2000.  A 3,000-year record of penguin populations.  Nature 407: 858.

What was done
The authors collected sediment cores from a lake on the Ardley Peninsula (maritime Antarctica) in late 1998 and early 1999 and analyzed them for geochemical elements characteristic of penguin droppings.

What was learned
Based on their interpretation of the data, the authors say that "the penguin population began to decline at 3,000 years before present (BP) and was lowest at 1,800-2,300 years BP, a period of low temperature."  After this, they say, "the population increased, peaking between 1,400 and 1,800 years BP."  Furthermore, they state that this population peak "corresponds almost exactly to a period of high precipitation."

What it means
Penguins appear to hate cold temperatures - of the extreme Antarctic type! - but love high levels of precipitation.  Hence, they should be pleased with what most climate models predict for a future world with greater atmospheric concentrations of various greenhouse gases: warmer and wetter overall.  Whether or not Antarctic penguins will ever inherit such a paradise, however, is another matter; climate alarmists are trying desperately to insure they never do.