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Tuesday, March 5, 2019
Climate Worsens Plight of #Migratory #Birds
New studies: Migratory birds face multiple threats from climate change
Whooping Crane at Goose Island State Park, Aransas County, Texas.
By Melissa Gaskill Texas Climate News
Some two billion birds migrate over the Gulf Coast each spring. The highest traffic occurs in Texas, with as many as 26,000 birds per kilometer of airspace each night, 5.4 times the number detected along the coast from Louisiana to Florida.
Several recent studies suggest that climate change could make the trip tougher for many of these birds, with shifts in the arrival of spring affecting their ability to fuel up for migration.
Both spring and fall migrations could be affected by changes in food availability and other conditions along the route and at the birds’ ultimate destinations, and in fall, birds could face stronger headwinds.
Spring now arrives earlier in 76 percent of all U.S. National Wildlife Refuges, according to a study in PLOS One, which could put birds out-of-sync with food availability and appropriate seasonal changes during their journey.
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