Solar irradiance and ENSO affect food security in Lake Tanganyika, a major African inland fishery

M. M. McGlue, S. J. Ivory, J. R. Stone, A. S. Cohen, T. M. Kamulali, J. C. Latimer, M. A. Brannon, I. A. Kimirei, M. J. Soreghan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Food security in a warming world is a grave concern for rapidly growing impoverished populations. Low-latitude inland fisheries provide protein for millions of rural poor, yet the impacts of high-frequency climate oscillations on these aquatic ecosystems are unknown. Here, we present a sub-annual-to-annual resolution paleolimnological reconstruction of upwelling, productivity, and algal composition at Lake Tanganyika, one of Africa's largest landlocked fisheries. The data reveal increases in diatom production at centennial-scale solar irradiance maxima, and interannual variability in upwelling linked to La Niña. Our study shows that interactions between global climatic controls and El Niño-Southern Oscillation teleconnections exert profound influences on the foundation of Lake Tanganyika's food web. Adapting long-term management practices to account for high-frequency changes in algal production will help safeguard inland fish resources.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbereabb2191
JournalScience advances
Issue number41
StatePublished - Oct 7 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial License 4.0 (CC BY-NC).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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