This week in birds - #371

A roundup of the week's news of birds and the environment:



A member of the very large wren family of birds, the Rock Wren is a resident in the Big Bend area of Texas, which is where I photographed this one.

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There was another warning from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change this week. They issued their latest report on the status of the world's oceans and it is not good. They are heating up so rapidly and their chemistry is changing so dramatically that it is threatening seafood supplies, fueling cyclones and floods and posing profound risks to people who live along coasts.

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Climate change refugees are likely to become more widespread in the coming years. Already the effects of climate change are one of the major factors driving people out of Central America.

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The decline of many bird species could be reversed with appropriate action from governments, businesses, and individuals.

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One species of bird that is doing very, very well (thanks to the Endangered Species Act) is the Bald Eagle. It is doing so well, in fact, that many are moving into more urban areas in search of territory. 

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A federal judge in Alaska has temporarily halted logging in the Tongass National Forest, the nation's largest national forest.

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Italian authorities have closed roads and evacuated homes near the Mont Blanc glacier after experts warned that a section of the glacier was in danger of breaking away.

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Little Stints are shorebirds that nest in the Arctic and winter along coasts in Africa, India, Europe, and elsewhere. They are declining because the wetlands that they depend on are being degraded by the effects of climate change.

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Unless dams along the Snake River are removed, it is feared that Chinook salmon could die out in the Columbia River drainage area of Idaho within twenty years. 

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is charged with enforcing the Endangered Species Act to protect vulnerable species, so, of course, the president's nominee to head the agency is a woman who is opposed to the Act.

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When habitat corridors reconnect longleaf pine savannahs, species that had been lost to the savannahs begin showing up again.

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A report on the status of the implementation of the Paris Accord on climate change shows that some countries are making good progress in meeting their goals, but others still have a long way to go.

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An underwater museum of sculptures by famous artists helps to protect fish off the southern Tuscan coast.

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Saltmarsh Sparrows are losing habitat to the rising sea levels and as they are forced to nest farther inland, they are more vulnerable to predators such as rats. This combination of effects could drive the vulnerable species to extinction.

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Atlantic Puffin image from Audubon.

Seabirds like this Atlantic Puffin depend upon a healthy population of forage fish for their survival. 

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Restoring the coastal marshes in California, as well as elsewhere, could go a long way toward preventing disastrous floods.

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Sydney, Australia loves its birds, the more raucous the better it seems. The loud and bold Kookaburras are particular favorites of some. 




Comments

  1. Hello Dorothy: The picture of the Rock Wren brings back fond memories for me. Thanks as always for the roundup. It is disconcerting that so much of it is sad, with dire warnings for wildlife and its future, and ultimately the future of Homo sapiens too.

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    1. It is sad that so much news of the environment is negative; nevertheless, I am inspired and encouraged by all the young people who are working to make a change. They are our hope for the future.

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  2. I spent two days in the woods on mountain slopes gazing at the peaks, hiking around a lake, meeting chipmunks and birds and spotting animal tracks. It was like a fairy tale and I could forget for a few hours what we are doing to our planet. I think, I hope, I came back renewed for the fight.

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    Replies
    1. I think spending time in Nature always renews us and gives us purpose.

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