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A million seabirds killed by a heat wave. It is the sad result of a scientific study and the resolution of a mystery dating back several years. Between the summer of 2015 and the spring of 2016, 62,000 guillemots of starving Troïl were found on beaches. However, this was only a tiny fraction of the total number of victims. Almost four years after the fact, scientists estimate the total number of dead birds at nearly one million and give details of the causes.
A sea heat wave which appeared in 2013 in the northeast of the Pacific Ocean is responsible for this massacre. And in 2015, it intensified causing a warming of three degrees over an area of 1600 square kilometers and thus disrupting ecosystems.
Algae important for the food chain then became rare and others, more harmful, multiplied on the contrary. Predators such as salmon, halibut and cod have seen their metabolism change, pushing them to eat more and therefore competing with fish-eating birds. Finally, the production of phytoplankton has also greatly decreased.
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