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A study links ocean warming to eelgrass wasting disease across latitudes, spotlighting the risks posed by rising temperatures to coastal ecosystems. By combining satellite temperature data with field surveys spanning 3500 km along North America’s Pacific coast, the research found disease prevalence linked to warm anomalies, indicating heightened risks due to climate warming. Utilizing an AI system, the Eelgrass Lesion Image Segmentation Application, enabled rapid and accurate disease quantification, empowering large-scale surveys. The findings emphasize AI’s significance in detecting climate-driven marine disease outbreaks and emphasize the increasing vulnerability of eelgrass habitats to warming climates.

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