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Paper: Climate change increases the likelihood of catastrophic avian mortality events during extreme heat waves

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  • Robert Karl Stonjek
    Climate change increases the likelihood of catastrophic avian mortality events during extreme heat waves Andrew E. McKechnie1, and Blair O. Wolf 2, 1DST/NRF
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 1, 2009

      Climate change increases the likelihood of catastrophic avian mortality events during extreme heat waves

      Andrew E. McKechnie1, and Blair O. Wolf 2,
      1DST/NRF Centre of Excellence at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute, Department of Zoology and Entomology
      , University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa
      2UNM Biology Department, MSC03-2020, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001 , USA

      Abstract

      Severe heat waves have occasionally led to catastrophic avian mortality in hot desert environments. Climate change models predict increases in the intensity, frequency and duration of heat waves. A model of avian evaporative water requirements and survival times during the hottest part of day reveals that the predicted increases in maximum air temperatures will result in large fractional increases in water requirements (in small birds, equivalent to 150–200 % of current values), which will severely reduce survival times during extremely hot weather. By the 2080s, desert birds will experience reduced survival times much more frequently during mid-summer, increasing the frequency of catastrophic mortality events.

      Source: The Royal Society
      http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/early/2009/09/25/rsbl.2009.0702.abstract?papetoc

      Posted by
      Robert Karl Stonjek

    • Robert Karl Stonjek
      Climate change increases the likelihood of catastrophic avian mortality events during extreme heat waves Andrew E. McKechnie1* and Blair O. Wolf2* 1DST/NRF
      Message 2 of 2 , Mar 12, 2010

        Climate change increases the likelihood of catastrophic avian mortality events during extreme heat waves

        Andrew E. McKechnie1* and Blair O. Wolf2*
        1DST/NRF Centre of Excellence at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute, Department of Zoology and Entomology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa
        2UNM Biology Department, MSC03-2020, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001, USA
         
        *Authors for correspondence (aemckechnie@...; wolf@...).

        Abstract

        Severe heat waves have occasionally led to catastrophic avian mortality in hot desert environments. Climate change models predict increases in the intensity, frequency and duration of heat waves. A model of avian evaporative water requirements and survival times during the hottest part of the day reveals that the predicted increases in maximum air temperatures will result in large fractional increases in water requirements (in small birds, equivalent to 150–200 % of current values), which will severely reduce survival times during extremely hot weather. By the 2080s, desert birds will experience reduced survival times much more frequently during mid-summer, increasing the frequency of catastrophic mortality events.

        Source: The Royal Society
        http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/6/2/253.abstract?etoc

        Posted by
        Robert Karl Stonjek

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