This story was originally published by Hakai Magazine and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration.
In New Zealand, some fish species are showing up in strange places. Divers are spotting tropical triggerfish in the temperate north of the archipelago. Meanwhile, in the usually icy waters around Rakiura, fishers are landing yellowtail kingfish and Australasian snapper, which never used to venture that far south.
These shifts make sense: the ocean is warming, and New Zealand is experiencing more marine heatwaves. Last summer, sea temperatures surged 5 degrees Celsius above normal in some parts of the country. In the heat, many marine organisms, such as the tens of millions of sea sponges that bleached in Fiordland at the country’s southern tip, simply died. Others have shifted to places where the temperature suits them better.
Yet as marine species move to survive, their shifting ranges are spurring big questions for the people who catch them.
For New Zealand’s Indigenous Māori, the challenge of species moving out of their fishing area is especially pressing. Follow... Read more