Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

Fwd: [BirdsCaribbean] Birds' Movements Reveal Global Warming Threat in Action

Expand Messages
  • Bruce Potter, IRF
    Another blow to tourism in the Caribbean --- NOW the song birds are staying home. ... -- -- 35 Years of Environmental Service to Small Tropical Islands --
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 11, 2009
      Another blow to tourism in the Caribbean --- NOW the song birds are
      staying home.



      >To: <birdscaribbean@yahoogroups.com>
      >From: "Dobson, Andrew" <adobson@...>
      >Sender: BirdsCaribbean@yahoogroups.com
      >Date: Tue, 10 Feb 2009 23:02:26 -0400
      >Subject: [BirdsCaribbean] Birds' Movements Reveal Global Warming
      >Threat in Action
      >
      >
      >Embargoed for Release: Contacts: Nancy
      >Severance: (212) 979-3124
      >
      >February 10, 2009
      >Tony Iallonardo: (202) 861-2242 X-3042
      >
      > nbsp;
      >Delta Willis: (212) 979-3197
      >
      >
      >
      >See below for details of 2/10/09 media teleconference, 1 p.m. (eastern)
      >
      >
      >
      >Birds Movements Reveal Global Warming Threat in Action
      >
      > Species Wintering Farther North Show Need for Policy Change
      >
      >
      >
      >WASHINGTON, DC, February 10, 2009-The northward and inland movement
      >of North American birds, confirmed by thousands of
      >citizen-observations, provides new and powerful evidence that global
      >warming is having a serious impact on natural systems, according to
      >new analyses by Audubon scientists. The findings signal the need for
      >dramatic policy changes to combat pervasive ecological disruption.
      >
      >
      >
      >Analyses of citizen-gathered data from the past 40 years of
      >Audubon's Christmas Bird Count (CBC) reveal that 58 percent of the
      >305 widespread species that winter on the continent shifted
      >significantly north since 1968, some by hundreds of miles. Movement
      >was detected among species of every type, including more than 70
      >percent of highly adaptable forest and feeder birds. Only 38 percent
      >of grassland species mirrored the trend, reflecting the constraints
      >of their severely-depleted habitat and suggesting that they now face
      >a double threat from the combined stresses of habitat loss and
      >climate adaptation.
      >
      >
      >
      >Population shifts among individual species are common, fluctuate,
      >and can have many causes. However, Audubon scientists say the
      >ongoing trend of movement by some 177 species-closely correlated to
      >long-term winter temperature increases-reveals an undeniable link to
      >the changing climate.
      >
      >
      >
      >"Birds are showing us how the heavy hand of humanity is tipping the
      >balance of nature and causing ecological disruption in ways we are
      >just beginning to predict and comprehend," said report co-author and
      >Audubon Director of Bird Conservation, Greg Butcher, Ph.D. "Common
      >sense dictates that we act now to curb the causes and impacts of
      >global warming to the extent we can, and shape our policies to
      >better cope with the disruptions we cannot avoid."
      >
      >
      >
      >Movements across all species-including those not reflecting the 40
      >year trend-averaged approximately 35 miles during the period.
      >However, it is the complete picture of widespread movement and the
      >failure of some species to move at all that illustrates the
      >potential for problems.
      >
      >
      >
      >Purple Finch, Pine Siskin, and Boreal Chickadee have retreated
      >dramatically north into the Canadian Boreal, their ranges moving an
      >estimated 313, 246, and 211 miles respectively over 40 years.
      >Continuing warming and development are predicted to have adverse
      >impacts on the Boreal forest and the species that depend on it.
      >
      >
      >Red-breasted Merganser, Ring-necked Duck, and American Black Duck,
      >normally found in southern-tier states, have all taken advantage of
      >warmer winter waters and have shifted their ranges north by an
      >estimated 244, 169, and 141 miles. Still, they are likely to be
      >negatively impacted by the increased drought expected in many parts
      >of North America as global warming worsens.
      >
      >
      >Only 10 of 26 grassland species moved north significantly, while
      >nine moved south. Species such as Eastern Meadowlark, Vesper
      >Sparrow, and Burrowing Owl were likely unable to move despite more
      >moderate northern temperatures because essential grassland habitat
      >areas have disappeared, having been converted to intensive human
      >uses such as row crops, pastures, and hayfields. In combination,
      >global warming and ongoing overuse of grasslands by humans will doom
      >grassland birds to continued population declines.
      >"Experts predict that global warming will mean dire consequences,
      >even extinction, for many bird species, and this analysis suggests
      >that that the process leading down that path is already well
      >underway," warned Audubon President John Flicker. "We're witnessing
      >an uncontrolled experiment on the birds and the world we share with
      >them."
      >
      >
      >
      >Butcher explains that many birds move great distances to find
      >suitable food and habitat, but questions how far they will be able
      >to move in the face of climate change before they run out of
      >habitat, food or even luck. "The long term picture is not good for
      >many species, and even in the short term, a single harsh winter
      >could have a devastating impact on birds that have moved too far,"
      >he adds.
      >
      >
      >
      >New forward-looking research from Audubon California reinforces the
      >national findings, predicting that about 80 of that state's native
      >bird species will experience significant climate-driven reductions
      >in their geographic range over coming decades.
      >
      >
      >
      >Scientific models indicate that the magnitude of losses in
      >California depends largely on steps taken now to reduce greenhouse
      >gas emissions. The California Gnatcatcher could lose as much as 56
      >percent of its range, or as little as 7 percent, depending on how
      >climate change is addressed. Projected range losses for the Bay
      >area's popular Chestnut-backed Chickadee vary from 49 percent to as
      >little as 16 percent.
      >
      >
      >
      >Detailed GIS maps produced using the California research project
      >where the birds are likely to be in 50 to 100 years. Findings will
      >help policymakers and land managers augment efforts to mitigate the
      >severity of global warming impacts with better habitat conservation
      >investments to address changes that can't be avoided.
      >
      >
      >
      >"The birds are giving us yet another warning that it's time for
      >urgent action," added Flicker. "People hear about melting glaciers
      >and changing weather, but now they can witness the impact global
      >warming is having with the birds they see or don't see right outside
      >their doors. These birds are our 'canaries in the coal mine' and
      >they're telling us that we'd better do something fast to curb global
      >warming and to protect habitat."
      >
      >
      >
      >Scientists say bold action is needed to overcome threats from global
      >warming. Audubon calls on Congress and the administration to advance
      >policies that will drastically reduce global warming pollution, cut
      >oil dependence in half, and invest in a clean energy future and the
      >economic benefits it offers. Americans can sign a petition
      >at <http://www.birdsandclimate.org/>http://www.birdsandclimate.org/
      >to demand aggressive federal policy action.
      >
      >
      >
      >Habitats already under siege from development, energy production,
      >agricultural expansion and other human uses will require enhanced
      >protection and restoration to sustain bird populations and provide
      >ecological benefits essential to human health, economic prosperity
      >and quality of life. Conservation efforts based on forward looking
      >projections such as those from Audubon California are essential.
      >
      >
      >
      >Audubon anticipates that the new avian evidence will help attract
      >attention and spark action among more than 40 million U.S.
      >bird-watchers, including tens of thousands who contributed to the
      >Christmas Bird Count data on which the studies are based. The
      >109-year-old census provides the world's longest uninterrupted
      >record of bird population trends. "Citizen Science is allowing us
      >to better recognize the impacts that global warming is having here
      >and now. Only citizen action can help us reduce them," said Butcher.
      >
      >###
      >
      >Now in its second century, Audubon connects people with birds,
      >nature and the environment that supports us all. Our national
      >network of community-based nature centers, chapters, scientific,
      >education, and advocacy programs engages millions of people from all
      >walks of life in conservation action to protect and restore the
      >natural world.
      >
      >
      >
      >Reporters may join in a live, telephone briefing on the findings at
      >1 p.m. (Eastern) on February 10.
      >
      >To participate, dial 1-866-710-0179. Give the operator the pass
      >code: Audubon 1
      >
      >
      >TOP WAYS TO COMBAT GLOBAL WARMING
      >
      >AND ITS IMPACT ON BIRDS
      >
      >
      >
      >All of us have a role to play in reducing the worst impacts of
      >global warming. As individuals and engaged citizens, we can all
      >take steps to reduce our energy use, switch to cleaner sources of
      >power, conserve habitat and encourage our leaders to take immediate
      >action. Here's a short list:
      >
      >
      >
      >1. Be an Active Citizen
      >
      >Join Audubon's activist team and urge our elected official to make
      >global warming a top priority by signing our petition at
      ><http://www.birdsandclimate.org/>http://www.birdsandclimate.org/
      >Voice your support for new approaches to help solve global warming,
      >move us toward a 100 percent clean energy future, reduce our
      >dependence on oil, and protect our environment. Stay informed,
      >write letters to your leaders, and support candidates who promise to
      >take the aggressive and farsighted actions necessary to curb global
      >warming.
      >
      >
      >
      >2. Get Involved in Your Community
      >
      >Support conservation efforts that protect and restore essential bird
      >habitat, keeping it healthy to better withstand global warming.
      >Visit <http://www.audubon.org/>http://www.audubon.org/ to learn how
      >the Important Bird Areas program is building a national network of
      >conservation stewards. And join in "Citizen Science" efforts like
      >the Christmas and Great Backyard Bird Counts
      ><http://www.audubon.org/bird/citizen/index.html>http://www.audubon.org/bird/citizen/index.html
      >
      >
      >
      >3. Determine Your Energy Profile and Carbon Footprint
      >
      >An energy audit assesses how much energy you consume. A carbon
      >footprint shows how much greenhouse gas you emit into the
      >atmosphere. These figures can help you determine steps you can take
      >to make your home, school, or office more energy efficient. Many
      >footprint calculators are available online.
      >
      >
      >
      >4. Reduce Energy Consumption
      >
      >Save money and energy by switching to compact fluorescent light
      >bulbs and maximize the use you natural sunlight for daytime lighting
      >needs. Reduce excessive use of home heating and cooling and
      >weatherize your home. Buy energy efficient appliances such as those
      >that are "Energy Star" compliant.
      >
      >
      >
      >5. Eat Locally Grown and Organic Produce
      >
      >The fewer miles your products travel, the less energy is used for
      >refrigeration and transport. And buy organic. That reduces the use
      >of pesticides that kill the organisms which help keep carbon in the
      >soil.
      >
      >
      >
      >6. Shop Smarter
      >
      >Manufacturing, packing, transporting, and selling goods not only use
      >huge amounts of energy but also release excessive amounts of
      >greenhouse gases. When shopping, always ask, "Do I really need
      >this? Does the Earth really need this?" You'll probably save money
      >as well.
      >
      >
      >
      >7. Save Gas and Money
      >
      >Use public transportation, ride your bicycle, walk, carpool, and
      >drive a more energy-efficient vehicle. Keep tires properly
      >inflated to increase fuel efficiency-it will lower your fuel costs.
      >
      >
      >
      >8. Plant More Trees and Buy Good Wood
      >
      >An average tree absorbs ten pounds of pollutants from the air each
      >year, including four pounds of ground level ozone and three pounds
      >of particulates. So, plant leafy trees around your house to provide
      >windbreaks and summer shade. When shopping for wood, ask about
      >certified wood to support sustainably managed forests that are
      >bird-friendly.
      >
      >
      >
      >9. Switch to Green Power
      >
      >Power plants are the single largest source of heat-trapping gases in
      >the United States, but in some states you can switch to utilities
      >that provide 50 to 100 percent renewable energy. You may also want
      >to consider installing solar panels on your home.
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >Snow Geese in sunrise (Chen caerulescens) Lonoke, Arkansas
      >Photo/Kelly Chitwood
      >
      >**********************************************************************
      >
      >This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and
      >
      >intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they
      >
      >are addressed. If you have received this email in error please notify
      >
      >the system manager.
      >
      >This footnote also confirms that this email message has been swept by
      >
      >MIMEsweeper for the presence of computer viruses.
      >
      >www.clearswift.com
      >
      >**********************************************************************
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >Content-Type: image/jpeg; name="Banner1.jpg"
      >Content-ID: <e5eccf092300470cc8ccff9838dda0be>
      >Content-Description: Banner1.jpg
      >Content-Disposition: inline; filename="Banner1.jpg"
      >Content-Location: Banner1.jpg


      --
      --
      35 Years of Environmental Service to Small Tropical Islands
      --
      Island Resources Foundation Fone 202/265-9712
      1718 "P" St NW, # T-4 fax 202/232-0748
      Washington, DC 20036 Potter cell: 1-443-454-9044
      -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
      -- -- -- -- -
      Subscribe to environmental e-mail groups at
      <http://www.irf.org/help/email.php >
      -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
      Blogs at http://pottersweal.wordpress.com/; twitter: brucepotter
      -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.