Polar terrestrial invertebrates are suggested as being vulnerable to temperature change relative to lower latitude species, and hence possibly also to climate warming. Previous studies have shown Antarctic and Arctic Collembola and Acari to possess good heat tolerance and survive temperature exposures above 30 °C. To test this feature further, the heat tolerance and physiological plasticity of heat stress were explored in the Arctic collembolan, Megaphorura arctica, from Svalbard and the Antarctic midge, Eretmoptera murphyi, from Signy Island. The data obtained demonstrate considerable heat tolerance in both species, with upper lethal temperatures ≥35 °C (1 h exposures), and tolerance of exposure to 10 and 15 °C exceeding 56 days. This tolerance is far beyond that required in their current environment. Average microhabitat temperatures in August 2011 ranged between 5.1 and 8.1 °C, and rarely rose above 10 °C, in Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard. Summer soil microhabitat temperatures on Signy Island have previously been shown to range between 0 and 10 °C. There was also evidence to suggest that E. murphyi can recover from high-temperature exposure and that M. arctica is capable of rapid heat hardening. M. arctica and E. murphyi therefore have the physiological capacity to tolerate current environmental conditions, as well as future warming. If the features they express are characteristically more general, such polar terrestrial invertebrates will likely fare well under climate warming scenarios
Explanations of the glacial–interglacial variations in atmospheric pCO2 invoke a significant role for the deep ocean in the storage of CO2. Deep-ocean density stratification has been proposed as a mechanism to promote the storage of CO2 in the deep ocean during glacial times. A wealth of proxy data supports the presence of a “chemical divide” between intermediate and deep water in the glacial Atlantic Ocean, which indirectly points to an increase in deep-ocean density stratification. However, direct observational evidence of changes in the primary controls of ocean density stratification, i.e., temperature and salinity, remain scarce. Here, we use Mg/Ca-derived seawater temperature and salinity estimates determined from temperature-corrected δ18O measurements on the benthic foraminifer Uvigerina spp. from deep and intermediate water-depth marine sediment cores to reconstruct the changes in density of sub-Antarctic South Atlantic water masses over the last deglaciation (i.e., 22–2 ka before present). We find that a major breakdown in the physical density stratification significantly lags the breakdown of the deep-intermediate chemical divide, as indicated by the chemical tracers of benthic foraminifer δ13C and foraminifer/coral 14C. Our results indicate that chemical destratification likely resulted in the first rise in atmospheric pCO2, whereas the density destratification of the deep South Atlantic lags the second rise in atmospheric pCO2 during the late deglacial period. Our findings emphasize that the physical and chemical destratification of the ocean are not as tightly coupled as generally assumed.