“Dead mud” is not a geologic term that I had heard before. But it well describes a geologic event that may have catastrophic implications for coastal areas as oceans continue to acidify.
The spread of “dead mud” among Maine’s shellfish flats could have disastrous implications for clammers, lobstermen, oyster farmers and others whose livelihoods depend on healthy coastal ecosystems.
Mark Green, an oyster grower and marine science professor at St. Joseph’s College in Standish, defines dead mud:
The darker muds and sulfur-rich muds don’t have any clams, and those are the flats that have lower pH levels. Places where historically there have been great harvests that supported clammers for decades, you now see water quality changes that are reflected in the mud.” The more acidic the water, the lower the pH.
In the following video, Prof. Mark Green further explains ocean acidification and how it affects marine life:
[embedplusvideo height=”315″ width=”584″ editlink=”http://bit.ly/1gFfZKY” standard=”http://www.youtube.com/v/kwZxq5sKLuI?fs=1″ vars=”ytid=kwZxq5sKLuI&width=584&height=315&start=&stop=&rs=w&hd=0&autoplay=0&react=1&chapters=¬es=” id=”ep5332″ /]