humming bird

Climate Change & Conservation eNews

Wildife

Butterfly
Wikimedia

Compounded effects of climate change and habitat alteration shift patterns of butterfly diversity

Climate change and habitat destruction have been linked to global declines in vertebrate biodiversity, including mammals, amphibians, birds, and fishes. However, invertebrates make up the vast majority of global species richness, and the combined effects of climate change and land use on invertebrates remain poorly understood…

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Monarch
Unsplash

‘Climate change’ may be a key factor in declining butterfly populations

The public tends to blame habitat loss and pesticides for the declining butterfly populations in the Western United States. But climate change maybe an equal, if not greater, factor.

As Pennisi points out, “butterflies are at risk in open spaces, too.” She writes: “Art Shapiro, an insect ecologist at the University of California, Davis, and colleagues have shown that over the past 35 years, butterflies are disappearing even in pristine protected areas such as the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the western United States”…

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moose
Flickr

Moose in a warming climate

I love moose. They and other wildlife are part of the reason why I work so hard to slow down climate change. Yet the future of moose in this country is looking grim if we don't work quickly to slow down climate change, and get off fossil fuels.

“Moose populations across the northern United States are declining as the climate warms up. You wouldn’t think that a temperature increase of only 1.5 to 2 degrees Fahrenheit would kill a moose, but it appears that it does. In northwestern Minnesota, nearly all the moose have disappeared, and in northeastern Minnesota over 90 percent of the moose calves are dying during some years. Moose hunting is no longer allowed in Minnesota…”

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Dolphins
NRDC website

30 x 30: NRDC’S commitment to protect nature and life on earth

This initiative provides a ray of hope into our collective efforts to conserve what has become even more important to our communities during the pandemic.

“To prevent mass extinctions and bolster resilience to climate change, scientists warn that we must protect at least 30 percent of our lands, rivers, lakes, and wetlands by 2030. At the same time, we must also fully and highly protect at least 30 percent of our oceans by 2030 to help safeguard marine ecosystems and fisheries that provide food, jobs, and cultural sustenance to billions around the world.

We have the tools to create a better, healthier future for our planet—and ourselves—but we must act now…”

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Loon Stretch
Ray Yeager

Changes in migratory bird patterns likely caused by climate change, study finds

So many people love birds. Explaining why slowing down climate change to help birds survive is a key way to inspire action. You'll want to help them understand that "natural climate solutions" are only part of the solution — and that moving to renewables and energy conservation is critical.

Flowering plants are blooming earlier as a result of climate change, which shifts relationships between birds and their food sources.

Ruby-throated hummingbirds, for example, are arriving at breeding grounds at a different time than the blooming of their traditional food sources. Studies show that hummingbirds are arriving earlier at their breeding grounds than in the early 1900s.

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Bluebird
Unsplash

The future of birds in our national parks

Audubon scientists have teamed up with colleagues from the National Park Service to look at how the accelerating change in climate will affect the birdlife in 274 National Park Service properties. Detailed reports for every park list birds for which the climatic conditions will be getting better or worse or staying the same. The reports also predict some species that might disappear from each park and others that could move in.

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Stretching Cormorant
Rosemary Gillan/Audubon Photography Awards

Climate change could cause shifts in bird ranges that seem unbelievable today

All over the country evidence is mounting that climate change is impacting the health and survival of birds. Yet too often conservationists get caught up in the anti-wind, and anti-solar, arguments because they can cause bird injury or death. While that is true, it is nothing like what climate change is doing. We have to help people understand what's at stake.

Audubon scientists have teamed up with colleagues from the National Park Service to look at how the accelerating change in climate will affect the birdlife in 274 National Park Service properties. Detailed reports for every park list birds for which the climatic conditions will be getting better or worse or staying the same. The reports also predict some species that might disappear from each park and others that could move in.

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Dragonfly On Stem
blickwinkel/Alamy

Insect populations suffering death by 1,000 cuts, say scientists

This ‘Frightening’ global decline is ‘tearing apart tapestry of life’, with climate crisis a critical concern...

Insect populations are suffering “death by a thousand cuts”, with many falling at “frightening” rates that are “tearing apart the tapestry of life”, according to scientists behind a new volume of studies.

The insects face multiple, overlapping threats including the destruction of wild habitats for farming, urbanisation, pesticides and light pollution. Population collapses have been recorded in places where human activities dominate, such as in Germany, but there is little data from outside Europe and North America and in particular from wild, tropical regions where most insects live.

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Butterfly On Flower
AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty

Scientists decry death by 1,000 cuts for world’s insects

"The problem, sometimes called the insect apocalypse, is like a jigsaw puzzle. And scientists say they still don’t have all the pieces, so they have trouble grasping its enormity and complexity and getting the world to notice and do something..."

The world’s vital insect kingdom is undergoing “death by a thousand cuts,” the world’s top bug experts said.

Climate change, insecticides, herbicides, light pollution, invasive species and changes in agriculture and land use are causing Earth to lose probably 1% to 2% of its insects each year, said University of Connecticut entomologist David Wagner, lead author in the special package of 12 studies in Monday’s Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences written by 56 scientists from around the globe.

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Beetle
Alias 0591/Flickr/cc

‘One of most disturbing articles I have ever read’ scientist says of study detailing climate-driven ‘bugpocalypse’

"Climate warming is the driving force behind the collapse of the forest's food web." —Bradford Lister and Andres Garcia

When a scientist who studies the essential role insects play in the health of the ecosystem calls a new study on the dramatic decline of bug populations around the world “one of the most disturbing articles” he’s ever read, it’s time for the world to pay attention.

The article in question is a report published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) showing that in addition to annihilating hundreds of mammal species, the human-caused climate crisis has also sparked a global “bugpocalypse” that will only continue to accelerate in the absence of systemic action to curb planetary warming.

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