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Climate Change & Conservation eNews

Wildife

Finch
iStock

Heat waves may limit mating in birds, but can behavior mitigate the effects of climate change?

Often we hear concerns about the loss of birds due to renewables or habitat degradation. Yet climate change is a significant threat. The question is, can they adapt? We've already lost 1/3 of the bird population (nearly 3 billion birds) in North America over the last 50 years... The numbers speak for themselves: birds need us to take action.

Scientists are racing to understand how animals respond to climate change, including the increasing prevalence and intensity of heat waves. Heat waves can be lethal, even for endotherms (warm-blooded animals) that internally regulate their own temperatures. But what about the sub-lethal effects of heat that do not kill animals but still might influence their ability to thrive in our changing world?

Behavioral and physiological effects of heat are likely but have been missing from recent high-profile studies on climate change. Researchers from Indiana University Bloomington and the University of Tennessee Knoxville recently teamed up to examine how heat and behavior interact to affect physiology…

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Bird
iStock

Climate change affects bird nesting phenology: comparing contemporary field and historical museum nesting records

When nesting, hatching, food availability, and temperatures get out of sync, bird survival becomes more at risk. This is a scientific article. See what you think.

Global climate change impacts species and ecosystems in potentially harmful ways. For migratory bird species, earlier spring warm-up could lead to a mismatch between nesting activities and food availability. CO2 provides a useful proxy for temperature and an environmental indicator of climate change when temperature data are not available for an entire time series.

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Birds
iStock

Increasing climatic decoupling of bird abundances and distributions

A recent scientific paper shows one of the many ways climate change is causing birds stress. This is a research paper abstract. You'll have to subscribe to read more than the abstract provided by the link.

Species differences in climate matching trends were related to their ecological traits, particularly habitat specialization, but not to average rates of climate and land use change within the species’ ranges. Climatic decoupling through time was particularly prominent for birds that were declining in abundance and occupancy, including threatened species….

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Elephanthead
iStock

As climate shifts, species will need to relocate, and people may have to help them

Land conservationists talk a lot about native species, and require native species as part of their conservation efforts. But what is native in a shifting climate? How might this perspective and language need to change?

Climate change is already affecting plants and animals worldwide and is a growing threat to biodiversity, adding a new layer to the existing challenges of habitat loss, invasive species, pollution, and overexploitation. A new study surveyed the recommendations of scientists for managing biodiversity in the face of climate change, providing a summary of practical guidance and identifying areas in need of further research…

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iStock

Climate change affects bird nesting phenology

This new analysis published in the Journal of Animal Ecology shows that the average egg-laying dates have moved up by nearly a month for 72 species of birds in the Upper Midwest region...

Global climate change impacts species and ecosystems in potentially harmful ways. For migratory bird species, earlier spring warm-up could lead to a mismatch between nesting activities and food availability. CO2 provides a useful proxy for temperature and an environmental indicator of climate change when temperature data are not available for an entire time series…

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Robin
Carolyn Kaster/AP

Birds are laying their eggs a month earlier, and climate change is to blame

When nesting, hatching, food availability, and temperatures get out of sync, bird survival becomes more at risk.

A new analysis published in the Journal of Animal Ecology shows that the average egg-laying dates have moved up by nearly a month for 72 species of birds in the Upper Midwest region…

The animals studied aren’t just early birds: they are sensitive to climactic shifts. The researchers found that small changes in temperature — approximated using carbon-dioxide data from over the years — affected birds’ laying patterns…

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Monarch
iStock

Research shows solar habitat installations support pollinators

Up to 10 million acres are forecasted to be tapped for solar. In addition to agrivoltaics and elevated solar, let's make sure it works for pollinators too. You can advocate for habitat-friendly solar. This won't happen by accident.

Join Monarch Joint Venture, Connexus Energy, MNL, and Fresh Energy for a free webinar where they dig into the new study, “Monitoring Pollinators on Minnesota Solar Installation,” which used field data collection practices to document an abundance of bees, butterflies, moths, flies, and wasps utilizing pollinator-friendly solar habitat in Minnesota. We’ll also discuss seed mixes and biodiversity benefits, how utilities and co-ops can lead, and more.

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Butterfly
Flickr

Monitoring pollinators on Minnesota solar installations

Join Monarch Joint Venture, Connexus Energy, MNL, and Fresh Energy for a free webinar on May 18th at noon CT. They will dig into this new study.

The researchers in this study used field data collection practices to document an abundance of bees, butterflies, moths, flies, and wasps utilizing pollinator-friendly solar habitat in Minnesota.

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Antelope
Flickr

Recovering America’s Wildlife Act

In addition to the 30x30 plan outlined in Biden's America the Beautiful initiative, Congress is considering the Recovering America's Wildlife Act, which would allocate nearly $1.4 billion annually to states to implement habitat restoration and conservation strategies.

This bill provides funding for (1) the conservation or restoration of wildlife and plant species of greatest conservation need; (2) the wildlife conservation strategies of states, territories, or the District of Columbia; and (3) wildlife conservation education and recreation projects.

The Department of the Interior must use a portion of the funding for a grant program. The grants must be used for innovative recovery efforts for species of greatest conservation need, species listed as endangered or threatened species, or the habitats of such species.

In addition, the bill requires certain revenues generated from fees and penalties for violations of environmental requirements to be used as a source for the funding…

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DoeDoe
Creative Commons

The dire need to combat habitat loss

This new report from the National Wildlife Federation found game species across the country lost, on average, 6.5 million acres of habitat over the past two decades. It is a trend advocates contended will continue unless lawmakers take action.

The modern conservation movement was born out of the hard work and leadership of sportsmen and women who continue to help fund, conserve, manage, and restore natural areas and game populations nationwide.

During the 1800s, the U.S. nearly lost familiar species like mule deer, white-tailed deer, black bear, elk, pronghorn, and wild turkeys to unregulated hunting and market hunting. As populations rapidly declined, hunters led the way to their recovery by supporting ethical, regulated hunting practices…

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