Trouble in the Cloud Forests, Birds Ascending 23 Feet a Year


Alex Wierbinski's picture

By Alex Wierbinski - Posted on 06 September 2018

BIRD NEWS

Cloud Forests Rising

Birds retreating from climate change, deforestation in Honduras cloud forests,
University of Utah, August 6, 2018.

MAIN POINTS
"A cloud forest is an ecosystem that derives much of its moisture from water vapor in the surrounding air."

"A 10-year study of bird populations in Cusuco National Park, Honduras, shows that the peak of bird diversity in this mountainous park is moving higher in elevation. Additional land protection, unfortunately, may not be enough to reverse the trend, driven in part by globally rising temperatures."

"...predicted that rising temperatures and changes in precipitation would cause species, particularly birds, to shift to higher elevations, shrinking their habitat and boosting the risk of extinction."

"That...is exactly what’s happening."

"...most species moving upslope, at an average of 23 feet (7 m) per year."

Not Just Climate
"One factor is the continuing development and deforestation within the park."

"The terrain’s status as a national park...doesn’t seem to be much of a deterrent for those seeking to expand agricultural land."

But Climate is Changing
“Increased protection is unlikely to mitigate the effects of climate change.”

 

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Climate and development moving birds higher into cloud forests of Honduras

 

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