Extinction countdown 3, unfortunately

Tämä viestiketju jatkaa tätä viestiketjua: Extinction countdown 2, unfortunately.

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Extinction countdown 3, unfortunately

huhtikuu 18, 2021, 10:38 am

Extirpation of Woodland/Boreal Caribou (Maritimes, Canada)

Gaspé caribou, the last of herds that once roamed the Maritimes, face extinction
CBC | April 18, 2021

In the highlands of Gaspésie National Park...you can find the only herd of caribou living south of the St. Lawrence River.

Numbering at around 50, this population of woodland caribou are the last remnant of what was once thousands of animals that roamed the Gaspé, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

Woodland caribou, also known as boreal caribou, roamed New Brunswick's forests for thousands of years.

But, in the late 1800s, sport hunting of the animals took off. U.S. hunters were promised the chance to take big game like moose and caribou, so they could take home a set of antlers.

The population collapsed fast, and by 1910, the hunting of caribou had been banned.

At the same time, white-tailed deer were moving into caribou country, thanks to increased logging and the wide-scale slaughter of wolves.

Scientists believe the deer brought with them a brain parasite that was fatal to caribou. For the already-stressed remaining herd, it was all too much to take...


huhtikuu 26, 2021, 6:36 am

The Sumatran rhino (closest living relative of the Woolly Rhino) is on the verge of extinction!
But research from CPG, led by Johanna von Seth & Nic Dussex, offers at least a glimmer of hope:
The remaining individuals have high genetic variation and low inbreeding levels.
OA paper: https://nature.com/articles/s41467-021-22386-8 *

Image-- Scuba Zoo's photo Sumatran Rhino ( https://twitter.com/CpgSthlm/status/1386582071657832449/photo/1 )...

- Centre for Palaeogenetics @CpgSthlm | 3:25 AM · Apr 26, 2021


* Johanna von Seth, Nicolas Dussex et al. 2021. Genomic insights into the conservation status of the world’s last remaining Sumatran rhinoceros populations. Nature Communications volume 12, Article number: 2393 (26 April 2021)

Small populations are often exposed to high inbreeding and mutational load that can increase the risk of extinction. The Sumatran rhinoceros was widespread in Southeast Asia, but is now restricted to small and isolated populations on Sumatra and Borneo, and most likely extinct on the Malay Peninsula. Here, we analyse 5 historical and 16 modern genomes from these populations to investigate the genomic consequences of the recent decline, such as increased inbreeding and mutational load. We find that the Malay Peninsula population experienced increased inbreeding shortly before extirpation, which possibly was accompanied by purging. The populations on Sumatra and Borneo instead show low inbreeding, but high mutational load. The currently small population sizes may thus in the near future lead to inbreeding depression. Moreover, we find little evidence for differences in local adaptation among populations, suggesting that future inbreeding depression could potentially be mitigated by assisted gene flow among populations.

huhtikuu 26, 2021, 8:01 am

Not only do humble creatures such as mussels have their own intrinsic worth, not to mention the ecosystem services they provide, they can teach us much, e.g.,

New #hydrogels use mussel-inspired adhesion to switch stickiness on and off. #Robots with these hydrogels pasted to their "feet" could climb upward on completely vertical and inverted surfaces. Learn more from @SciRobotics: https://fcld.ly/c228ztr *
-Science Magazine @ScienceMagazine | 5:00 AM · Apr 26, 2021
0:18 ( https://twitter.com/ScienceMagazine/status/1386606091669213187 )

* Junwen Huang et al. 2021. Electrically programmable adhesive hydrogels for climbing robots.
Science Robotics 14 Apr 2021: Vol. 6, Issue 53, eabe1858 DOI: 10.1126/scirobotics.abe1858 https://robotics.sciencemag.org/content/6/53/eabe1858

Although there have been notable advances in adhesive materials, the ability to program attaching and detaching behavior in these materials remains a challenge. Here, we report a borate ester polymer hydrogel that can rapidly switch between adhesive and nonadhesive states in response to a mild electrical stimulus (voltages between 3.0 and 4.5 V). This behavior is achieved by controlling the exposure and shielding of the catechol group through water electrolysis–induced reversible cleavage and reformation of the borate ester moiety. By switching the electric field direction, the hydrogel can repeatedly attach to and detach from various surfaces with a response time as low as 1 s. This programmable attaching/detaching strategy provides an alternative approach for robot climbing. The hydrogel is simply pasted onto the moving parts of climbing robots without complicated engineering and morphological designs. Using our hydrogel as feet and wheels, the tethered walking robots and wheeled robots can climb on both vertical and inverted conductive substrates (i.e., moving upside down) such as stainless steel and copper. Our study establishes an effective route for the design of smart polymer adhesives that are applicable in intelligent devices and an electrochemical strategy to regulate the adhesion.

huhtikuu 29, 2021, 6:30 am

Bee population steady in Dutch cities thanks to pollinator strategy
Scheme involving ‘ bee hotels’ and ‘bee stops’ reaps rewards as census shows no strong decline in urban population
Anne Pinto-Rodrigues | 27 Apr 2021

“bee hotels” (a collection of hollow plant stems or thin bamboo that provides cavities for solitary bees to nest), replacing grass in public spaces with native flowering plants, and stopping the use of chemical weed killers on public lands. Florinda Nieuwenhuis, an ecologist at the municipality of Amsterdam, reported in Ten years of Wild Bee Policy in Amsterdam (March 2021) that a 45% increase in the number of solitary bee species was recorded in the city in 2015, compared with a survey in 2000.

...bee stops – bus stops with their roofs covered in native plants – that attract bees and absorb dust particles and rainwater.

...Honey Highway, an entrepreneurial venture that collaborates with municipalities to plant wildflowers in the space available on the sides of highways, railways, and waterways, thus ensuring food and shelter for bees.


NL Pollinator Strategy 'Bed & Breakfast for Bees'
The Netherlands | Jan 22, 2018
(in English) 83 p

Ten years of Wild Bee Policy in Amsterdam
Florinda Nieuwenhuis | March 2021
(in Dutch) 6 p

huhtikuu 29, 2021, 11:58 am

NRA's Wayne LaPierre elephant hunt video sparks outrage (BBC)

Footage has emerged of the head of the US National Rifle Association (NRA) repeatedly shooting an elephant in Botswana, sparking outrage. First published by the New Yorker and The Trace on Tuesday, the 2013 video shows Wayne LaPierre firing at the animal from point-blank range. After Mr LaPierre struggles to kill it, another hunter takes the fatal shot...

In November last year the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Red List of Endangered Species listed the species of elephant killed as endangered...

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 13, 2021, 7:57 am

Piles of ancient poop reveal ‘extinction event’ in human gut bacteria
Andrew Curry | May 12, 2021

...The (1,000+ year old) coprolites (found at the back of rock shelters in Utah and Mexico) yielded 181 genomes that were both ancient and likely came from a human gut. Many resembled those found in nonindustrial gut samples today, including species associated with high-fiber diets. Bits of food in the samples confirmed that the ancient people's diet included maize and beans, typical of early North American farmers. Samples from a site in Utah suggested a more eclectic, fiber-rich “famine diet” including prickly pear, ricegrass, and grasshoppers.

...Treponema bacteria, for instance, are virtually unknown in the industrialized gut microbiome and appear only occasionally in people living nonindustrial lifestyles today. But, “They're present in every single one of the paleofeces, across all the geographic sites,” Kostic says. “That suggests it's not purely diet that's shaping things.”

...the ancient microbiomes also stood apart from their modern counterparts, for example lacking markers for antibiotic resistance. And they were notably more diverse, including dozens of unknown species. “In just these eight samples from a relatively confined geography and time period, we found 38% novel species,” says.

...The microbial diversity (of today's hunter-gatherers and herders) far exceeds that of people in industrial societies, and researchers have linked low diversity to higher rates of “diseases of civilization,” including diabetes, obesity, and allergies.

...Kostic says. “(spotty appearance of Treponema) suggests it's not purely diet that's shaping things.”

...The new data from old poop show no one on the planet today has been spared changes to their microbiome. “Nonindustrial populations, including their microbiomes, shouldn't be considered proxies for our ancestors,” says Massachusetts Institute of Technology geneticist Mathieu Groussin.

The findings also suggest we've lost a lot of microbial helpers in the recent past, and our bodies may not have had time to adapt....



Marsha C. Wibowo et al. 2021. Reconstruction of ancient microbial genomes from the human gut. Nature (12 May 2021) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-021-03532-0

Loss of gut microbial diversity...in industrial populations is associated with chronic diseases..., underscoring the importance of studying our ancestral gut microbiome. However, relatively little is known about the composition of pre-industrial gut microbiomes. Here we performed a large-scale de novo assembly of microbial genomes from palaeofaeces. From eight authenticated human palaeofaeces samples (1,000–2,000 years old) with well-preserved DNA from southwestern USA and Mexico, we reconstructed 498 medium- and high-quality microbial genomes. Among the 181 genomes with the strongest evidence of being ancient and of human gut origin, 39% represent previously undescribed species-level genome bins. Tip dating suggests an approximate diversification timeline for the key human symbiont Methanobrevibacter smithii. In comparison to 789 present-day human gut microbiome samples from eight countries, the palaeofaeces samples are more similar to non-industrialized than industrialized human gut microbiomes. Functional profiling of the palaeofaeces samples reveals a markedly lower abundance of antibiotic-resistance and mucin-degrading genes, as well as enrichment of mobile genetic elements relative to industrial gut microbiomes. This study facilitates the discovery and characterization of previously undescribed gut microorganisms from ancient microbiomes and the investigation of the evolutionary history of the human gut microbiota through genome reconstruction from palaeofaeces.

toukokuu 26, 2021, 11:23 am

Corentin Bochaton et al. 2021. Large-scale reptile extinctions following European colonization of the Guadeloupe Islands.
Science Advances 19 May 2021:Vol. 7, no. 21, eabg2111 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abg2111 https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/7/21/eabg2111

Large-scale extinction is one of the defining challenges of our time, as human processes fundamentally and irreversibly reshape global ecosystems. While the extinction of large animals with popular appeal garners widespread public and research interest, the importance of smaller, less “charismatic” species to ecosystem health is increasingly recognized. Benefitting from systematically collected fossil and archaeological archives, we examined snake and lizard extinctions in the Guadeloupe Islands of the Caribbean. Study of 43,000 bone remains across six islands revealed a massive extinction of 50 to 70% of Guadeloupe’s snakes and lizards following European colonization. In contrast, earlier Indigenous populations coexisted with snakes and lizards for thousands of years without affecting their diversity. Study of archaeological remains provides insights into the causes of snake and lizard extinctions and shows that failure to consider fossil-derived data probably contributes to substantial underestimation of human impacts to global biodiversity.

toukokuu 26, 2021, 1:34 pm

A huge surprise’ as giant river otter feared extinct in Argentina pops up (Guardian)

Conservationists thrilled at the sighting of the wild predator, last seen in the country in the 1980s...

toukokuu 26, 2021, 11:12 pm

Giant tortoise found in Galápagos a species considered extinct a century ago (Guardian)

Ecuador confirms turtle found two years ago on Fernandina Island is a Chelonoidis phantasticus species ...

toukokuu 31, 2021, 8:26 pm

Scientists Are Racing to Save These Sea Stars From Extinction
Dharna Noor |May 31, 2021

Since 2013, a disease exacerbated by overheating oceans has been decimating sea star populations, especially those of one particularly striking variety: sunflower sea stars. Over the course of three years, the illness killed off nearly 91% of the sunflower species’ global population. Now, scientists are fighting to restore the beautiful creatures before it’s too late. That could boost the health of kelp forests, which would help wildlife and us in addressing the climate crisis.

Sunflower sea stars are the biggest starfish on the planet: They can measure up to 3 feet (0.9 meters) across. They’re also the fastest variety, using their 24 arms to race across the seafloor at a rate of one yard (0.9 meters) per minute. The creatures come in a rainbow of different colors and a variety of patterns. Their forms take on deep browns and purples, sunny oranges and yellows, and pink bodies with lavender extremities. The species was once abundant from Alaska to Southern California, but thanks to an outbreak of the mysterious ocean-borne illness known as sea star wasting syndrome, they all but disappeared.

“They are the first ever listed endangered sea star,” Jason Hoden, a senior scientist at Friday Harbor Labs who is running the sunflower sea star breeding project, said.

...Sunflower sea stars are the key predators of sea urchins, which eat kelp. But without the stars around to keep urchin populations in check, the number of urchins have grown out of control. All those urchins have been chomping down tons of kelp.

...That’s bad news for the climate crisis since kelp forests sequester carbon. Research has shown seaweed can sequester 1,500 tons of carbon dioxide per 0.4 square miles (1 square kilometer) of ocean. Preserving existing kelp forests could help address climate change as well as provide habitat for wildlife from otters to fish...


kesäkuu 3, 2021, 9:26 am

#150 in thread 2 (pesticides), contd.

Pesticides Are Killing the World’s Soils
They cause significant harm to earthworms, beetles, ground-nesting bees and thousands of other vital subterranean species
Nathan Donley, Tari Gunstone | June 1, 2021

...beneath fields covered in tightly knit rows of corn, soybeans, wheat and other monoculture crops, a toxic soup of insecticides, herbicides and fungicides is wreaking havoc, according to our newly published analysis in the journal Frontiers in Environmental Science.

...we looked at nearly 400 published studies that together conducted over 2,800 experiments on how pesticides affect soil organisms. Our review encompassed 275 unique species or types of soil organisms and 284 different pesticides or pesticide mixtures.

In just over 70 percent of those experiments, pesticides were found to harm organisms that are critical to maintaining healthy soils—harms that currently are never considered in the EPA’s safety reviews.

...The ongoing escalation of pesticide-intensive agriculture and pollution are major driving factors in the precipitous decline of many soil organisms, like ground beetles and ground-nesting bees. They have been identified as the most significant driver of soil biodiversity loss in the last decade...

...The EPA, which is responsible for pesticide oversight in the U.S., openly acknowledges that somewhere between 50 percent to 100 percent of all agriculturally applied pesticides end up on the soil. Yet to assess pesticides’ harms to soil species, the agency still uses a single test species—one that spends its entire life above ground in artificial boxes to estimate risk to all soil organisms—the European honeybee.

...(practices) promoting soil health...reducing tilling and planting cover crops...are often accompanied by increased pesticide use. When fields aren’t tilled, pesticides are often used to kill weeds, and cover crops are often killed by pesticides before crop planting.



Tari Gunstone et al. 2021. Pesticides and Soil Invertebrates: A Hazard Assessment (Review). Front. Environ. Sci., 04 May 2021 | https://doi.org/10.3389/fenvs.2021.643847 https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fenvs.2021.643847/full

Agricultural pesticide use and its associated environmental harms is widespread throughout much of the world. Efforts to mitigate this harm have largely been focused on reducing pesticide contamination of the water and air, as runoff and pesticide drift are the most significant sources of offsite pesticide movement. Yet pesticide contamination of the soil can also result in environmental harm. Pesticides are often applied directly to soil as drenches and granules and increasingly in the form of seed coatings, making it important to understand how pesticides impact soil ecosystems. Soils contain an abundance of biologically diverse organisms that perform many important functions such as nutrient cycling, soil structure maintenance, carbon transformation, and the regulation of pests and diseases. Many terrestrial invertebrates have declined in recent decades. Habitat loss and agrichemical pollution due to agricultural intensification have been identified as major driving factors. Here, we review nearly 400 studies on the effects of pesticides on non-target invertebrates that have egg, larval, or immature development in the soil. This review encompasses 275 unique species, taxa or combined taxa of soil organisms and 284 different pesticide active ingredients or unique mixtures of active ingredients. We identified and extracted relevant data in relation to the following endpoints: mortality, abundance, biomass, behavior, reproduction, biochemical biomarkers, growth, richness and diversity, and structural changes. This resulted in an analysis of over 2,800 separate “tested parameters,” measured as a change in a specific endpoint following exposure of a specific organism to a specific pesticide. We found that 70.5% of tested parameters showed negative effects, whereas 1.4% and 28.1% of tested parameters showed positive or no significant effects from pesticide exposure, respectively. In addition, we discuss general effect trends among pesticide classes, taxa, and endpoints, as well as data gaps. Our review indicates that pesticides of all types pose a clear hazard to soil invertebrates. Negative effects are evident in both lab and field studies, across all studied pesticide classes, and in a wide variety of soil organisms and endpoints. The prevalence of negative effects in our results underscores the need for soil organisms to be represented in any risk analysis of a pesticide that has the potential to contaminate soil, and for any significant risk to be mitigated in a way that will specifically reduce harm to soil organisms and to the many important ecosystem services they provide.

kesäkuu 7, 2021, 2:55 pm

On the Verge of Extinction, These Whales Are Also Shrinking
The few living North Atlantic right whales are smaller than previous generations, and some show signs of severely stunted development.
Annie Roth | June 3, 2021

...Most of the 360 or so North Atlantic right whales alive today bear scars from entanglements in fishing gear and collisions with speeding ships and, according to a new study, they are much smaller than they should be.

Scientists recently examined how the size-to-age ratios of right whales living in the North Atlantic have changed over the past 40 years and found that the imperiled whales are significantly smaller than earlier generations of their species.

Their research,* published Thursday in the journal Current Biology, suggests that human-induced stressors, primarily entanglements, are stunting the growth of North Atlantic right whales, reducing their chances of reproductive success and increasing their chances of dying. Unless drastic measures are taken to reduce these stressors, the authors say, the whales may not be around much longer...


* Joshua D. Stewart et al. 2021. Decreasing body lengths in North Atlantic right whales. Current Biology (June 03, 2021) DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2021.04.067 https://www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(21)00614-X


• Whales with severe entanglements in fishing gear are stunted
• Whales whose mothers were entangled while nursing are stunted
• Body lengths have been decreasing since 1981
• Cumulative impacts in addition to entanglements may contribute to stunted growth

Whales are now largely protected from direct harvest, leading to partial recoveries in many previously depleted species...
However, most populations remain far below their historical abundances and incidental human impacts, especially vessel strikes and entanglement in fishing gear, are increasingly recognized as key threats...In addition, climate-driven changes to prey dynamics are impacting the seasonal foraging grounds of many baleen whales...In many cases these impacts result directly in mortality. But it is less clear how widespread and increasing sub-lethal impacts are affecting life history, individual fitness, and population viability. We evaluated changes in body lengths of North Atlantic right whales (NARW) using aerial photogrammetry measurements collected from crewed aircraft and remotely operated drones over a 20-year period (Figure 1). NARW have been monitored consistently since the 1980s and have been declining in abundance since 2011 due primarily to deaths associated with entanglements in active fishing gear and vessel strikes...High rates of sub-lethal injuries and individual-level information on age, size and observed entanglements make this an ideal population to evaluate the effects that these widespread stressors may have on individual fitness. We find that entanglements in fishing gear are associated with shorter whales, and that body lengths have been decreasing since 1981. Arrested growth may lead to reduced reproductive success...and increased probability of lethal gear entanglements...These results show that sub-lethal stressors threaten the recoveries of vulnerable whale populations even in the absence of direct harvest.

kesäkuu 26, 2021, 9:58 am

Widespread bird deaths in Maryland, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and DC in May. Neurological symptoms.
Virus? Poisons?


Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 26, 2021, 2:58 pm

Herpes virus wiped out the eastern extension of house finches a few years ago. I remember one or two poor little things hanging around my feeder, crusty eyed and weak. I sterilized the feeders, but hesitated to withdraw winter food source for native birds to save newcomers.

heinäkuu 1, 2021, 11:22 pm

Shock find brings extinct mouse back from the dead (Phys.Org)

An Australian mammal thought to have been wiped out over 150 years ago can now be crossed off our list of extinct animals, following a new study. Researchers compared DNA samples from eight extinct Australian rodents, as well as 42 of their living relatives, to look at the decline of native species since the arrival of Europeans in Australia. The study showed the extinct Gould's mouse was indistinguishable from the Shark Bay mouse, still found on several small islands off the coast of Western Australia...

heinäkuu 13, 2021, 12:20 am

UN sets out Paris-style plan to cut extinction rate by factor of 10 (Guardian)

Eliminating plastic pollution, reducing pesticide use by two-thirds, halving the rate of invasive species introduction and eliminating $500bn (£360bn) of harmful environmental government subsidies a year are among the targets in a new draft of a Paris-style UN agreement on biodiversity loss... new goals for the middle of the century include reducing the current rate of extinctions by 90%, enhancing the integrity of all ecosystems, valuing nature’s contribution to humanity and providing the financial resources to achieve the vision...

heinäkuu 26, 2021, 9:14 am

Re the insect apocalypse*, in the two springs (2020, 2021) that we could not be on our property on the St Lawrence River, there are no longer Tree Swallows in our ~12 nest boxes and we saw just two Barn Swallows down the road--our boxes used to be full and power lines groaned under perching swallows in mid to late summer.

There are no spider webs on or in the house, which is usually infested to 9th degree without attention.

A few warblers pick tiny insects off our second story deck, but insect population does not appear anywhere near past levels--this adjacent to a mighty river... Can't be sure insect deficit causing is apparent decline in insectivores, but difficult to avoid that conclusion...

No bugs on windshield, either after 9 hr drive--in past years we'd be scrubbing 'fer sure!

* https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jul/25/the-insect-apocalypse-our-wo...

elokuu 5, 2021, 7:09 am

Return of the pack: African wild dogs’ epic journey to a new home in Malawi (Guardian)

In an ‘absolute win’ for the endangered species, 14 dogs were transported by road and air to a ‘safe space’ in a country they have not populated in large numbers for decades...

“Wild dogs are the second most endangered carnivore in Africa"...

We had a small pack of African wild dogs staying on the escarpment just below us for a while last year. They are beautiful animals. They killed a few sheep and goats, but we contacted Kenya Wildlife Service who came and arranged compensation for the dead livestock and educated the local community about the wild dogs. Eventually the pack moved on; as the article says, “African wild dogs need such large distances and large amounts of space" and they tend to stay short periods in different parts of their huge territory.

Picture from Wikipedia

Muokkaaja: elokuu 8, 2021, 7:57 am

Eastern Monarch Butterfly current population is a mere 20% of what it was just a few decades ago.

Why is the Eastern Monarch Butterfly disappearing?
"Climate change has been the dominant disruptive force since 2004." (7x!!)

What can WE do?
"Focus on restoring milkweed in the regions that remain most conducive to monarch reproduction despite warming temperatures and shifting precipitation patterns"


Why is the eastern monarch butterfly disappearing?
A Spartan-led research team has uncovered an answer — at least for the most recent population decline — with a huge assist from volunteers
Michigan State U | July 19, 2021

...(Erin Zylstra, an MSU postdoctoral research associate) led the effort to develop a model based on these observations and draw meaningful conclusions. In particular, the team was interested in what the data said about the three leading theories behind the eastern monarch’s population decline: milkweed habitat loss (glyphosate), mortality during the autumn migration and resettlement on the overwintering grounds, and climate change’s detrimental impact on monarch breeding success.

Each of these hypotheses can contribute to lost butterflies at smaller scales, Zylstra explained. But looking at the problem holistically — across many years and multiple countries — makes it clear that climate change has been the dominant disruptive force since 2004. Unfortunately, there isn’t enough data in agricultural regions to definitively determine what happened between the mid-1990s and the mid-2000s, the period of the most pronounced decline...

...Although we can’t simply turn off climate change, we can, for example, focus on restoring milkweed in the regions that remain most conducive to monarch reproduction despite warming temperatures and shifting precipitation patterns, she said. That said, anything we can do to curb climate change will also improve the outlook for both monarchs and humanity, she added.

Also: https://phys.org/pdf545899337.pdf

Erin R. Zylstra et al. 2021. Changes in climate drive recent monarch butterfly dynamics. Nature Ecology & Evolution (19 July 2021)

Declines in the abundance and diversity of insects pose a substantial threat to terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. Yet, identifying the causes of these declines has proved difficult, even for well-studied species like monarch butterflies, whose eastern North American population has decreased markedly over the last three decades. Three hypotheses have been proposed to explain the changes observed in the eastern monarch population: loss of milkweed host plants from increased herbicide use, mortality during autumn migration and/or early-winter resettlement and changes in breeding-season climate. Here, we use a hierarchical modelling approach, combining data from more than 18,000 systematic surveys to evaluate support for each of these hypotheses over a 25-yr period. Between 2004 and 2018, breeding-season weather was nearly seven times more important than other factors in explaining variation in summer population size, which was positively associated with the size of the subsequent overwintering population. Although data limitations prevent definitive evaluation of the factors governing population size between 1994 and 2003 (the period of the steepest monarch decline coinciding with a widespread increase in herbicide use), breeding-season weather was similarly identified as an important driver of monarch population size. If observed changes in spring and summer climate continue, portions of the current breeding range may become inhospitable for monarchs. Our results highlight the increasingly important contribution of a changing climate to insect declines.

elokuu 8, 2021, 8:06 am

>18 John5918: Quick google says African Wild Dogs are about the size of wolves. In North America, medium-sized predators are benefiting from absence of wolves--and changing ecosystems as a result, e.g., fox, coyotes, fishers, etc.

How do wild dogs vocalize? (Wolves' howling no doubt contributed to their ardent defense by environmentalists.)

elokuu 10, 2021, 2:43 am

A rare species thought to be extinct is clinging to survival, study finds (CNN)

A species of tiny chameleons presumed to be extinct due to deforestation has been found, but it is clinging to survival. Up to only 5.5 centimeters (2.2 inches) long, the critically endangered Chapman's pygmy chameleon (Rhampholeon chapmanorum) is native to the low-elevation rainforest of the Malawi Hills in southern Malawi, a country in southeastern Africa, according to a study published Monday in Oryx—The International Journal of Conservation. First described by herpetologist and author Colin Tilbury in 1992, Chapman's pygmy chameleon is one of the world's rarest chameleons...

Presumably CNN assumes that its audience doesn't know that Malawi is "a country in southeastern Africa". One rarely hears the USA described as "a country in northern America" or Italy as "a country in southern Europe".

elokuu 10, 2021, 3:38 am

>21 John5918: I mean I see your point, but the USA has 20 times the population of Malawi and Italy 4 times; Italy has been Italy since Old English and Malawi has been so named since 1964, and English literature is full of works set in Italy. I quickly found a Deseret News article that refers to "Estonia, a country in northern Europe", which is closer to a fair comparison.

elokuu 10, 2021, 5:56 am

>22 prosfilaes:

Fair comment, but I do feel that there is widespread ignorance about the Global South in the Global North.

elokuu 17, 2021, 9:07 am

Saved by a Bucket, but Can the Owens Pupfish Survive?
A new refuge in the California desert offers a long imperiled species its first real chance to thrive.
Sabrina Imbler | Aug. 16, 2021

(Video clip-- worth a peek.)

The Owens pupfish, a small blue fish native to the springs in the California desert, was spared from extinction on an August afternoon in 1969 by Phil Pister and his two buckets...


Muokkaaja: elokuu 17, 2021, 10:46 am

>23 John5918: One rarely hears the USA described as "a country in northern America" or Italy as "a country in southern Europe".

An Irish musician I used to know liked to refer to England as "a small island off the coast of Europe".

Or, when he was feeling even snarkier, "off the cost of Ireland".

elokuu 17, 2021, 10:40 am

>25 kiparsky:

The British tended to view Europe as being a continent off the coast of England, hence the famous (apocryphal?) headline in the Times: "Fog in the Channel - Europe cut off".

Muokkaaja: elokuu 18, 2021, 8:10 am

Culture shock: how loss of animals’ shared knowledge threatens their survival
Zoe Kean | 13 Aug 2021

From whales to monkeys, elephants and even fruit flies, researchers say they are starting to understand animal culture just ‘as it disappears before our eyes’...


A couple books by ethologists--Jane Goodall is an ethologist--who study animal behavior in natural environment:

Bear biologist Barrie Gilbert describes the oh-so different cultures of the (scary) Yellowstone Grizzly Bears v their more easy-going, salmon-eating northern cousins in BC and Alaska: One of Us, A Biologist's Walk Among Bears.

His colleague, Carl Safina wrote of highly developed cultures in Sperm Whales, Scarlet Macaw, and Chimpanzees: Becoming Wild: How Animal Cultures Raise Families, Create Beauty, and Achieve Peace.

The Pacific salmon that BC / Alaska grizzlies depend on to fatten them for the long, cold winters, are themselves losing "stocks" or cultures, river by river, on their own slide to oblivion. (Hope extinction is not inevitable, but...) Ditto Atlantic Salmon, American Eels...

elokuu 22, 2021, 5:51 pm

Sequel to The Wind in the Willows...

Ratty comes home: water voles thrive again on Hertfordshire riverbank
Having suffered a 90% drop in population, they still face extinction in Britain – but a new initiative offers a glimmer of hope
Robin McKie | 22 Aug 2021

A hundred and fifty water voles were last week settling into new homes on the riverbanks of Hertfordshire. The animals had been released from pens the previous week as part of a campaign to halt the devastating drop in Arvicola amphibius number across the British Isles over the past 50 years.

Once widespread in the UK, water voles – whose most known incarnation is Ratty in Wind in the Willows – have suffered a 90% drop in population since the 1970s. Feral mink, which kill young voles in their nests, in combination with major changes in land use, have resulted in the widespread eradication of a species that was once a ubiquitous presence along the banks of Britain’s rivers...


elokuu 26, 2021, 4:52 am

A British study:

Light pollution from street lamps linked to insect loss https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-58333233

elokuu 30, 2021, 11:49 pm

Kenya is home to 36,280 elephants, 1,739 rhinos - Animal Census (Star)

President Uhuru Kenyatta has received the 2021 National Wildlife Census Report which was fully funded by the government, and conducted by the local experts... According to the census report, Kenya has a total of 36,280 savanna elephants, becoming the fourth largest population in the world after Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Tanzania. The groundbreaking census established that the country is home to 1,739 rhinos among them two northern white rhino species, 897 black rhinos, and 840 southern white rhinos...

syyskuu 3, 2021, 12:09 am

Kenya’s elephant population is on the rise as poachers hunted down (Euronews)

There has been a surge in elephant populations in Kenya, according to the country’s first ever wildlife census. The numbers have increased ever since the African nation cracked down on illegal poaching in its fight to conserve vital wildlife.

Poaching is not a sport, it’s an environmental crime posing a major threat to animal populations. Kenya’s use of tracking, forensic science and improved prosecutions have now resulted in a dramatic drop in the poaching.

The report shows an increase in elephants, rhinos, lions, giraffe, Grévy’s zebra and hirola (hunting antelopes) - a 12 per cent surge since the last figures were recorded in 2014, when poaching activity was at its peak. This covers almost 60 per cent of Kenya's land mass overall...

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) warned this year that Africa's elephant population was being decimated by poaching and habitat destruction. Factors such as controlled shooting, human settlements and poaching have gradually eliminated elephants from certain areas in Kenya. The population of African savanna elephants has descended rapidly by at least 60 per cent over the past 50 years, resulting in their classification as "endangered". But measures put in place by the Kenyan government to curb elephant poaching in different ecosystems continue to be “productive”, says the report. The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) is reportedly enhancing anti-poaching measures to further stem the illegal activity. Involving local communities in wildlife management is also integral to their wildlife conservation strategy...

syyskuu 10, 2021, 12:16 pm

>1 margd: caribou, contd.

Map of extensive various populations of caribou across Canadais worth a look...
"the animal is such a national icon that it graces (Canada's) quarter coin"

Caribou are vanishing at an alarming rate. Is it too late to save them?
After more than a million years on Earth, the caribou is under threat of global extinction. The precipitous decline of the once mighty herds is a tragedy that is hard to watch — and even harder to reverse.
Alanna Mitchell | September 3, 2021

...today, after more than a million years on Earth, the caribou, also known as the reindeer, is under threat of global extinction. In Canada, where the animal is such a national icon that it graces our quarter coin, the species is in ominous shape. Of a dozen ecologically distinct populations (called “designatable units” by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada), one is extinct, six are endangered, three are threatened and two are of special concern.

It’s not just a bleak picture; it’s also getting worse. That’s despite huge efforts by conservationists and Indigenous Peoples, streams of scientific analysis, dozens of provincial and federal legal instruments designed to protect caribou, plus lots of money, brainpower and passion. It’s like watching a boulder roll down a hill. Only one designatable unit, the little white Peary caribou of the Arctic islands, has improved recently, going from endangered to threatened in the committee’s rating system.

...Take, for example, the barren-ground caribou, one of the two main types (the other is woodland caribou). These are the vast Arctic herds that still make the longest land migration in North America, pounding their way across the tundra to get to their calving grounds in the North, where females give birth within a few days of each other. The mass trek and group maternity
ward is a strategy to keep wolves at bay through the power of congregation. In the mid-1990s, Canada had about 1.8 million barren-ground caribou. By the time the committee assessed them in 2016, a solid million had vanished...


lokakuu 28, 2021, 2:43 pm

African Elephants Evolved Tusklessness Amazingly Fast
But at what cost?
Ed Yong | Oct 21, 2021

...Gorongosa National Park...was once Edenic, but during Mozambique’s civil war, from 1977 to 1992, much of its wildlife was exterminated. Government troops and resistance fighters slaughtered 90 percent of Gorongosa’s elephants, selling their ivory to buy arms and supplies. Naturally tuskless females, which are normally rare, were more likely to survive the culls; after the war, their unusual trait was noticeably common.

...To see tusklessness evolving after just 15 years of war, in a “long-lived, slow-reproducing species like the elephant, is incredible,” John Poulsen, a tropical ecologist at Duke University...

...The elephant’s chromosomal quirk stops males from easily reaching full tusklessness (although their tusks can shrink). And “ironically, fewer tusked females could focus poaching efforts on males even more than it already is, potentially nearly stopping reproduction,” Poulsen said.

...if the evolution of tusklessness somehow saved elephants from poaching, the loss of their mighty teeth could lead to other losses. Tusks aren’t there just for show. Elephants use them as tools to strip bark from trees and excavate minerals from soil. Rob Pringle, an ecologist at Princeton and one of Campbell-Staton’s colleagues, has shown that these behaviors sculpt the savannah. In damaging trees, elephants create homes for lizards; in toppling other trees, they open up spaces for understory plants. A population of tuskless elephants is better than having no elephants at all, but it’s not functionally the same as a population of tusked ones...


lokakuu 28, 2021, 10:04 pm

UN message : Don’t Choose Extinction


marraskuu 13, 2021, 4:41 am

Three Snow Leopards at a Nebraska zoo died of COVID-19. (Two Sumatran Tigers made full recovery.)
Considered a vulnerable species, the estimated world population of Snow Leopards is 4,000-6,500.


marraskuu 13, 2021, 3:58 pm

Invasive armored catfish causing harm to Florida’s manatees
Alex Howard | November 12, 2021

...(Plecostomus...or the Armored Catfish), which are native to the Amazon, and arrived through the aquarium trade.

...FWC says these fish are almost impossible to exterminate, and with so many threats already to manatees, one more is still a concern.

...Despite the fact that it only eats algae, it’s causing problems with one of Florida’s most at-risk species.

Dozens of these fish can be seen clinging to the backs of manatees, feeding on the algae that grow on their backs.

Imagine being swarmed by a cloud of mosquitoes, that’s what these feel like to the sea cows.

During the winter months, manatees often seek warmth in shallow freshwaters, like the Caloosahatchee. But it’s those same waters that have become infested with these armored catfish.

“So if they are having to be a lot more active trying to get catfish off of them, then they are burning more calories, and will have to go out earlier, and they’ll get cold, which is very dangerous for them.” Dr. (Missy) Gibbs added...


joulukuu 1, 2021, 12:56 pm

I want to go to Gaspé Peninsula to bike and canoe. I hope to catch a glimpse of the woodland caribou. Sounds like a close relative of moose.

tammikuu 28, 2022, 9:24 am

Interesting, though needs confirmation: cruise ships, esp. Carnival, responsible for deaths of right whales in restricted zone of Gulf of St Lawrence. (Author is proponent of lobster fishery?) Cruises are set to resume in St Lawrence R at least in 2022. Hopefully order below will protect right whales in Gulf of St Lawrence.
Right whales per NOAA: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/species/north-atlantic-right-whale .
Interim Order for the Protection of the North Atlantic Right Whales (Eubalaenia Glacialis) in and Near the Shediac Valley: https://www.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/fisheries-peches/commercial-commerciale/atl-arc/narw-b...

Viewpoint: COVID-19 saves right whales by sinking cruise ships
Jim O’Connell | January 26, 2022

Canada created the Shediac ship restricted zone in April 2020 just a couple weeks before Holland America’s Zaandam was scheduled to sail through that zone on a shipping lane used only seasonally by cruise ships as a shortcut to Quebec City.

However, a COVID-19 no-sail order in March 2020 superseded that restriction.

Consequently, there was not one Canadian ship right whale strike death in two years and only one Canadian crab entanglement death, Cottontail, found off the U.S. Atlantic south coast in the spring of 2021. Canada also now does spot closures on crabbing in that same area when whales are spotted. So the three years known as the “unusual mortality event” will not happen again as long as Canada doesn’t look the other way when cruising recommences.

In search of copepods, North American right whales established a feeding ground at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River starting in 2015 right under an established cruise ship only shortcut between Prince Edward Island (PEI) and Quebec City. During this time, PEI was building a second multimillion dollar berthing pier to sell $3 stuffed whales made in China as souvenirs. The pier was completed in 2020.

PEI port data and satellite ship tracking data clearly shows Carnival Cruise Line as the most likely cause of up to 21 dead whales between 2015 and 2019 – three in 2015, 10 in 2017, eight in 2019. The causes of the three deaths in 2015 were called undetermined and never made the news...


maaliskuu 13, 2022, 7:37 am

ConservationBytes (author of article below) @conservbytes | 3:10 AM · Mar 13, 2022:
Not only is de-extinction:
- unethical
- neocolonial
- entitled
- expensive
- devoid of ecological understanding
- unable to address lack of genetic diversity
- ignorant of global habitat loss & climate change,

it won’t improve biodiversity’s lot one jot

Can we resurrect the thylacine? Maybe, but it won’t help the global extinction crisis
Corey J. A. Bradshaw | March 8, 2022

The rebirth of the bucardo
Leaving no stone unturned
An expensive project
Prevention is better than cure
‘Playing God’
A question of numbers
Living space
The world has changed
Diseases and invasions
The debate isn’t going away


maaliskuu 15, 2022, 12:22 am

Traits that many species facing extinction have in common (Phys.Org)

A trio of researchers... has discovered some of the traits that many species of plants and animals facing extinction have in common. In their paper {they} describe their analyses of data from two large, open online repositories—one for plants, the other for animals—and what they learned about the traits that put them more at risk of disappearing. Prior research has shown that the main contributor to plant and animal extinction today is human activity... In this new effort, the researchers wondered if there were characteristics about plants or animals that made them more vulnerable to human-made changes... The researchers looked for patterns or commonalities among species that might make them more vulnerable to extinction and found different patterns among different types of species...

maaliskuu 23, 2022, 5:17 am

>40 John5918: Cool. Another thing is that often it takes several stresses (these days almost all anthropogenic...) to quickly drive a species down: overharvest + environmental change + invasive species.

Hope for Kenya’s mountain bongos as five released into sanctuary
Peter Muiruri | 15 Mar 2022

Considered critically endangered, the chestnut-coloured mountain bongo is one of the largest forest antelopes and native to the equatorial forests of Mount Kenya, Eburu, Mau and Aberdares. IUCN predicts their numbers will probably continue to decline without direct action. A recent wildlife census in Kenya counted just 96 mountain bongos in the wild.

Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy (MKWC) and Kenya Wildlife Service and Kenya Forest Service have been leading a breeding and rewilding programme for the last 20 years....


huhtikuu 25, 2022, 7:43 am

Norway's breeding programme sees arctic foxes return in high numbers Access to the comments Comments
Joao Vitor Da Silva Marques | Updated: 24/04/2022

More than 450 Siberian fox cubs have been bred and released into the wild in the last twenty years in Norway.

A breeding programme was initiated back in 2003 when there were probably no more than 50 arctic foxes left in the wild in Finland, Sweden and Norway combined.

Now, new cubs are transported and released in the mountains of Troms, an area where has historically a lot of the foxes lived, with many of their abandoned dens still intact. Some are being cleared of snow, to make it easier for the incoming vulpines.

...The number of Siberian foxes has increased slowly since the start of the programme and today the population counts around 300 adult animals in Norway.

However, the situation is still precarious, as these foxes are still listed as under threat of becoming extinct in Scandinavia.

To maximise their post-release survival, supplementary feeding stations and artificial dens are deployed near release sites. To date, captive-reared foxes have been reintroduced into nine different populations across Norway.


huhtikuu 26, 2022, 9:15 am

Science Magazine @ScienceMagazine | 11:00 AM · Apr 25, 2022:
Populations of more than half of the world’s 18 penguin species are declining, including several of the nine species that live in Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic. Threats include habitat loss and climate change.

Drawing of 9 penguin species in decline

The lost colony
Some 900,000 king penguins vanished without a trace. Why?
Eli Kintisch | 19 Mar 2020

... (French national research agency CNRS ecologist Charles Bost) and his colleagues suspect that changes in the surrounding ocean forced the penguins to swim farther to find food. Studies of other king penguin colonies suggest foraging birds from Île aux Cochons normally swim toward an oceanic feature hundreds of kilometers to the south known as the polar front or Antarctic convergence. The front marks the northern extent of the colder Antarctic waters. The penguins are attracted by the many sea creatures that gather at such thermal edges—especially the bird's main prey, lanternfish, which form huge schools some 100 meters or more below the surface.

The polar front doesn't stay in the same place every year. During some years, climate anomalies known as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation and the Subtropical Indian Ocean Dipole cause ocean waters in the region to warm, and the polar front shifts south, closer to the pole and farther from Île aux Cochons. During the longer foraging trips, hunger might force the parent left back at the colony to leave the nest to feed—leaving chicks vulnerable to predators or starvation. The longer swims might also make the adult penguins more vulnerable to deadly stress and predation. And those anomalous years offer a preview of how the Southern Ocean is expected to warm in the coming decades, steadily shifting the polar front farther south...


huhtikuu 27, 2022, 1:38 pm

A downside of farmed salmon--as if wild salmon don't have enough challenges...

NowThis @nowthisnews | 2:33 AM · Apr 27, 2022:
‘Salmon farming has lost the war on sea lice’ — This activist claims underwater factory farms are fighting a losing battle against sea lice, which now pose a greater threat to the ecosystem

Sea Lice Pose a New Threat: Developing Chemical Resistance
‘Salmon farming has lost the war on sea lice’ — This activist claims underwater factory farms are fighting a losing battle against sea lice, which now pose a greater threat to the ecosystem
2:44 ( https://twitter.com/nowthisnews/status/1519202937154588673 )

toukokuu 13, 2022, 5:51 pm

The vaquita porpoise is one of the most endangered animals in the world, with only an estimated 10 individuals remaining. (Gulf of Mexico)

But according to a new genetic study in Science, they won’t be doomed to extinction based on inbreeding. https://fcld.ly/wz766mw

- Science Magazine @ScienceMagazine · May 10

toukokuu 20, 2022, 9:32 am

Greater One-horned Rhino Population Reaches New High
May 17, 2022

Species’ population now numbers 4,014 individuals

Washington, DC – Officials in India announced that the greater one-horned rhino, found only in India and Nepal, has increased to 4,014 individuals after a biannual survey was completed in March.

The government of Assam, the province in India that is home to 70% of the world’s greater one-horned rhino population, conducted its biannual rhino census after a delay due to the global pandemic. Nepal, the only other country with greater one-horned rhinos, conducted its rhino census last year. The greater one-horned population has increased by 274 rhinos since the last count – helped by a ‘baby boom’ during the pandemic when many protected areas were closed to visitors.

“For a species that was once perilously close to extinction, numbering fewer than 100 individuals, this recovery is truly remarkable,” said Nina Fascione, executive director of the International Rhino Foundation (IRF).

Kaziranga National Park officials, home to the world’s largest greater one-horned rhino population, announced an increase of 200 individuals from 2018 despite 400 deaths due mainly to natural causes, such as the impact from flooding over the past few years...


toukokuu 20, 2022, 9:45 am

Greater One-horned Rhino Population Reaches New High
Intl Rhino Foundation | May 17, 2022

Washington, DC – Officials in India announced that the greater one-horned rhino, found only in India and Nepal, has increased to 4,014 individuals after a biannual survey was completed in March.

The government of Assam, the province in India that is home to 70% of the world’s greater one-horned rhino population, conducted its biannual rhino census after a delay due to the global pandemic. Nepal, the only other country with greater one-horned rhinos, conducted its rhino census last year. The greater one-horned population has increased by 274 rhinos since the last count – helped by a ‘baby boom’ during the pandemic when many protected areas were closed to visitors.

“For a species that was once perilously close to extinction, numbering fewer than 100 individuals, this recovery is truly remarkable,” said Nina Fascione, executive director of the International Rhino Foundation (IRF).

Kaziranga National Park officials, home to the world’s largest greater one-horned rhino population, announced an increase of 200 individuals from 2018 despite 400 deaths due mainly to natural causes, such as the impact from flooding over the past few years...


toukokuu 21, 2022, 1:09 pm

Scottish wildcats: Kittens set to save species from extinction born at wildlife park
Jody Harrison | 19th May 2022

Sixteen wildcats were paired up earlier in the year the Saving Wildcats conservation centre at the Highland Wildlife Park which has now welcomed eight kittens in three litters, with hopes of more births over the coming weeks.

... They will be sexed, microchipped, vaccinated and health checked at around eight- to 10-weeks-old.

Led by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS), Saving Wildcats is working with national and international experts to restore the critically endangered wildcat population by breeding and releasing them into carefully selected locations in the Cairngorms National Park.

Planning is under way for the first releases in 2023, and will be subject to receiving a translocation licence.

Dr Helen Senn, head of conservation and science at RZSS said numbers in the wild had decline as “habitat loss, hunting and inter-breeding with domestic cats have all taken their toll”...


toukokuu 25, 2022, 12:06 pm

The Last Bee

After the last ee
had uzzed its last uzz,

the irds and the utterflies
did what they could.

ut soon the fields lay are,
few flowers were left,

nature was roken,
and the planet ereft.

rian ilston
(Brian Bilston)

kesäkuu 9, 2022, 10:22 am

Science Magazine @ScienceMagazine | 3:30 AM · Jun 9, 2022
Exposure to glyphosate (active ingredient in Roundup)—one of the most widely used herbicides worldwide—can significantly impair bumblebees’ collective ability to maintain hive temperature, specifically when food is scarce, researchers report in Science.

Image https://twitter.com/ScienceMagazine/status/1534799974696984577/photo/1

Anja Weidenmüller et al. 2022. Glyphosate impairs collective thermoregulation in bumblebees.
Science 2 Jun 2022 Vol 376, Issue 6597 pp. 1122-1126 DOI: 10.1126/science.abf7482 https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.abf7482 https://fcld.ly/io2opqh

heinäkuu 8, 2022, 9:42 am

Knock-knock. Are any ivory-billed woodpeckers out there?

...Ornithologist John Fitzpatrick, a former director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, said, “Nobody has gotten that cover-of-Time-magazine foldout that everybody wishes they could. But there is still legitimate believable evidence that these birds still exist in remote locations of Louisiana and Arkansas.”

Fitzpatrick, who was lead author of a 2005 study that said the woodpecker had been found in eastern Arkansas, said a non-peer-reviewed paper by respected experts posted on a “preprint” site has some very interesting videos. One shows a group of three large woodpeckers pecking at branches high in a tree.

“The only woodpecker that foraged together in small groups was the ivorybill,” he said.

The Wildlife and Fisheries Service announcement in September opened a 60-day period for public comment, and another comment period was opened with a virtual public meeting about the woodpecker in January.

Only one of nine speakers at that meeting supported the proposal to declare the bird extinct. Fitzpatrick was among experts who said the proposal was premature.

“For a species this iconic, this well-known, I think the right approach for them to take is caution,” he said Wednesday. “And I think that’s what they’re doing.”...


heinäkuu 8, 2022, 10:41 am

Judge Throws Out Trump-Era Rollbacks on Endangered Species
WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge on Tuesday threw out a host of actions by the Trump administration to roll back protections for endangered or threatened species, a year after the Biden administration said it was moving to strengthen such species protections.
The Associated Press | 7/6/2022

...U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar in Northern California eliminated the Trump-era rules even as two wildlife agencies under President Joe Biden are reviewing or rescinding the regulations. The decision restores a range of protections under the Endangered Species Act — including some that date to the 1970s — while the reviews are completed...


elokuu 16, 2022, 10:19 am

A bit of good news:

Saiga antelopes have increased 10-fold after mass die-off in 2015
Corryn Wetzel | 12 August 2022

More than a million large-nose antelopes now roam the Kazakhstan steppe, a big rebound from the 130,000 animals left after a fatal bacterial disease killed half of the population...


elokuu 16, 2022, 10:21 am

A bit more good news, esp for us piscivores!

Commercial fishers and wild salmon advocates celebrate large returns to B.C. waters
'This is the best season I can recall in my lifetime,' says 40-year industry veteran
Dirk Meissner | Aug 10, 2022

elokuu 18, 2022, 11:49 am

De-extinction: scientists are planning the multimillion-dollar resurrection of the Tasmanian tiger
Adam Morton | 16 Aug 2022

...The thylacine, also known as the Tasmanian tiger, is the second undertaking by Colossal, a Texas-based biotechnology “de-extinction” company that last year announced it planned to use genetic engineering techniques to recreate the woolly mammoth and return it to the Arctic tundra.

Its new project is a partnership with the University of Melbourne, which earlier this year received a $5m philanthropic gift to open a thylacine genetic restoration lab. The lab’s team has previously sequenced the genome of a juvenile specimen held by Museums Victoria, providing what its leader, Prof Andrew Pask, called “a complete blueprint on how to essentially build a thylacine”.

...The scientists aim to reverse this by taking stem cells from a living species with similar DNA, the fat-tailed dunnart, and turning them into “thylacine” cells – or the closest approximation possible – using gene editing expertise developed by George Church, a professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School and Colossal’s co-founder...


Jack Ashby @JackDAshby | 5:42 PM · Aug 16, 2022:
Author #PlatypusMatters. Assistant Director of @ZoologyMuseum at @Cambridge_Uni. Chaser of furry things. Australian mammal nerd. @Nat_SCA Trustee.
(Attachments and comments at) https://twitter.com/JackDAshby/status/1559656815046012928

A US biotech firm has joined the effort to bring back the #thylacine. I understand the sentiment of wanting thylacines to not be extinct, particularly as it was effectively a deliberate #extinction - the motivation to right that wrong is immense. But... 🧵

Science is very far off the #deextinction of the #thylacine being possible, and it’s almost certainly impossible. In the meantime, the messages that #extinction is forever are being undermined.

Australia continues to face an extinction crisis. The #thylacine project could make valuable scientific discoveries that could be used to help endangered #marsupials through genetic technologies, but I doubt these would ever be preferable to traditional ecological measures.

Significant resources would be required to attempt to bring back #thylacines, and chance of success is vanishingly small. And so, I'd choose to focus on already successful work combating habitat loss & invasive species, rather than a high-risk low-odds gamble to clone a thylacine

Even if it were possible to bring back a #thylacine (a big if), I worry that the idea of #deextinction just too dangerous. Thylacines are gone due to overhunting. If we keep saying that this is reversible, what would that do to our ability to argue against overhunting elsewhere?

A great article detailing why it's probably impossible to resurrect a #thylacine, as well as the challenging ethics of trying to do it. For one thing, the model animal the project is based on is separated from #thylacines by 40 million years...

De-extinction Company Aims to Resurrect the Tasmanian Tiger
Kate Evans on August 16, 2022

elokuu 19, 2022, 7:56 am

First I'd heard that electromagnetic waves disturb honeybees. However, "Mobile phone companies and policy makers point to studies with contradictory results and usually claim that there is a lack of scientific proof of adverse effects of electromagnetic fields on animals."

Daniel Favre. 2017. Disturbing Honeybees’ Behavior with Electromagnetic Waves: a Methodology (Perspective). J Behavior 7 Aug 2017.

Mobile phone companies and policy makers point to studies with contradictory results and usually claim that there is a lack of scientific proof of adverse effects of electromagnetic fields on animals. The present perspective article describes an experiment on bees, which clearly shows the adverse effects of electromagnetic fields on these insects’ behavior. The experiment should be reproduced by other researchers so that the danger of manmade electromagnetism
(for bees, nature and thus humans) ultimately appears evident to anyone.

...Sound analysis in the beehive revealed that the bees initially remained calm for about 45 min after the onset of the amplified RF-EMF, but started to produce sounds that were higher in both frequency and amplitude about one hour after the onset of this amplification (Figure 1c). This observation is confirmed by the comparison of the frequency spectra of quiet and disturbed honeybees: the 110 Hz frequency peak was present with the former but missing in the latter (Figure 1d). A shift to higher
frequencies was also observed (from 370 Hz to 405 Hz). The intensity of the sound in the hive was also higher for disturbed honeybees, as compared to quiet honeybees (Figure 1e; see also the y-axis in the frequency spectra in Figure 1d). This so-called worker piping signal (a behavioral signal) is naturally produced by disturbed honeybees (not shown; see {5} for details). Similar data were obtained with the other four experiments (not shown)

The experimental design proposed in the present perspective article was set up in order to enable beekeepers and researchers in the field to easily reproduce the experiments with the use of
conventional materials and userfriendly computer programs.

The present data strongly suggest that honeybee colonies are affected and disturbed by electromagnetic waves (RF-EMF). Few experiments (n = 5) using the experimental setup were
performed; ethical questions arose after I was attacked by f rious honeybees when a second experiment was performed at a week interval on the same hive. This honeybees’ behavior might
reflect the emotional nature of the worker honeybee: according to Lipinsky 9, a rich collection of symptoms of bee emotional agitation similar to that in “higher animals” and in man can be observed, such as specific postures, moves (runs), excitations of the Vegetative Nervous System (VNS), specific pheromone release, stereotypies (dances), freezing behavior, clustering, specific sounds release, engorgement with honey, and warm ups (a non-visible physiological symptom). Bees under different
emotional agitation produce different sounds: hissings (3000 Hz), pipings (300 - 600 Hz), quackings (1000 Hz), tootings (1200 Hz) squeakings (300 Hz) etc...

The sound production apparently elicited by electromagnetic waves reminded me of

Bees Scream Bloody Murder When Hornets Attack (1:41)
Nov 10, 2021

Asian honey bees rally against giant hornet invasions with an acoustic response that resembles the alarm shrieks of birds, primates and other social mammals. Watch the research video from the Department of Biological Sciences at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. And learn more the cousins of murder hornets and the bees they prey on → https://www.livescience.com/bees-shriek-when-hornets-attack *


* Bees 'shriek' when attacked by giant cousins of 'murder hornets'
Mindy Weisberger | November 10, 2021

Giant hornets band together in groups to overwhelm honey bee hives...


lokakuu 16, 2022, 3:56 am

Native earthworms didn't survive glaciation in places like Minnesota. Trees like the shallow-rooted Sugar Maple evolved in deep beds of humus produced by fungus acting on fallen leaves and trees. Hard to believe, but invasive earthworms threaten this ecosystem, leaving behind hard, packed earth. The demise of Goblin Fern below is an indicator of the damage...

An invasion threatens a ghostly fern in the Minnesota woods
A weird ambassador to the underground meets a toothless, deadly predator.
Jennifer Bjorhus | October 14, 2022

...Ancient and otherworldly, the goblin fern spends most of its life underground. When it does come up every few years, the strange plant sends up a tiny leaf with a spore-bearing stalk that's nearly impossible to see, even on hands and knees...Only four decades after scientists first documented the species, researchers now fear it could vanish in the next ten years.

...As tiny as it is, the fern is attached to a vast underground fungal network that forms the soil foundation of the forest and supports the maple-basswood stands that are central to Ojibwe traditions. Each spring, when the night temperatures still drop below freezing but days are warming, families have joined at sugar camps to tap the maple trees and boil the sap into syrup — still a dietary staple and one of the first foods that some Ojibwe parents feed their infants.

The goblin fern is a moonwort, a global group of ancient ferns that predate the dinosaurs

...{Nonindigenous earthworms} devour all three layers of organic matter on the forest floor, rich and full of microbes: the forest litter on top, the layer below of decomposing leaves and twigs and logs called duff, and the decomposed matter below called humus. Then they go underground and eat the fungi on the tree roots.

The forest was unprepared for the onslaught.

Minnesota has no native earthworms. That's counterintuitive to people conditioned to see them as an indicator of healthy soil. But earthworms did not survive the glaciers that molded the state, so Minnesota's forests evolved without them. Minnesota has other types of native worms, but they're smaller and not voracious.

Scientists say the earthworms likely arrived in the soil dumped in ship ballasts and pots of plants with European settlers and, more recently, in fish bait. There are more than a dozen earthworm species now in the state. One of the worst is the nightcrawler, Lumbricus terrestris, a favorite with anglers.

For something so slow and toothless, the worms do an astonishing amount of damage to forests. They are eyeless eating machines, consuming up to half their body weight each day...

...{after invasion by erathworms} all hard ground...a lot of Pennsylvania sedge growing — one plant that doesn't need underground fungi. Some of the trees had what resembled high water marks on their lower trunks. That's where the forest floor used to be, (Raining White, invasive species specialist with Leech Lake Band) noted. The recession has left the trees a little less anchored, more prone to blowdowns. Water runs off the compacted soil that more easily erodes.

The forest litter doesn't break down and rot as it should. (Kate Hagsten, plants director with the Leech Lake Band) pointed to downed trees "that aren't doing anything," and probably look as fresh as when they fell. The changed soil stunts the growth of maple trees and shortens their lives.

And they are nearly everywhere in Minnesota now, except for a few spots such as the ridge along the North Shore, (Lee Frelich, director of the University of Minnesota's Center for Forest Ecology) said. They're even in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, although Frelich estimated it's only about 30% to 40% infested, radiating from the most popular routes...


lokakuu 18, 2022, 9:07 am

Nepal nearly doubles its wild tiger population

... an estimated 235 wild tigers, nearly twice the number of tigers counted in 2009.

It’s exciting and unprecedented news for this small Himalayan country, one of 13 tiger range countries that pledged to double the number of tigers in the wild by 2022—part of an initiative known as TX2.

In recent years, Nepal joined forces with WWF to strengthen community-based antipoaching and monitoring efforts. The government has also increased its commitments to protect and restore vital tiger habitat—including important wildlife corridors—to ensure tigers have the space and prey base they need to thrive...


lokakuu 26, 2022, 8:31 am

Scientists warn of 'insect apocalypse' amid climate change
| October 25, 2022

...An international study on the future of insects under climate change scenarios has found the loss of insects will drastically reduce the ability of humankind to build a sustainable future...


marraskuu 18, 2022, 4:19 am

‘Like Finding a Unicorn’: Researchers Rediscover the Black-Naped Pheasant-Pigeon, a Bird Lost to Science for 140 Years {1882!}

A successful expedition in Papua New Guinea captured photos and video of the chicken-size pigeon, highlighting the value of local ecological knowledge as scientists seek out other long-missing species.

Andy McGlashen | November 17, 2022


marraskuu 18, 2022, 5:05 am

OPB OPB | 11:45 AM · Nov 17, 2022:
Official {Oregon Public Broadcasting}

BREAKING: US regulators met today and quickly approved a plan to demolish four dams on the lower Klamath River and open up hundreds of miles of salmon habitat in what will be the largest dam removal and river restoration project in the world.

‘Momentous’: Feds advance demolition of 4 Klamath River dams
GILLIAN FLACCUS (Associated Press)
PORTLAND, Ore. Nov. 17, 2022

...The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s unanimous vote on the lower Klamath River (4) dams is the last major regulatory hurdle and the biggest milestone for a $500 million demolition proposal championed by Native American tribes and environmentalists for years. The project would free hundreds of miles of the river, which flows from Southern Oregon into Northern California...

The dams produce less than 2% of PacifiCorp’s power generation — enough to power about 70,000 homes — when they are running at full capacity...But they often run at a far lower capacity because of low water in the river and other issues, and the agreement that paved the way for Thursday’s vote was ultimately a business decision, he said.

PacifiCorp would have had to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in fish ladders, fish screens and other conservation upgrades under environmental regulations that were not in place when the aging dams were first built. But with the deal approved Thursday, the utility’s cost is capped at $200 million, with another $250 million from a California voter-approved water bond...


“We’re closing coal plants and building wind farms and it all just has to add up in the end. It’s not a one-to-one,” he said of the coming dam demolition. “You can make up that power by the way you operate the rest of your facilities or having energy efficiency savings so your customers are using less.”...


marraskuu 23, 2022, 9:31 am

Endangered status sought for manatees as hundreds starve
CURT ANDERSON | November 21, 2022

...U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (took) manatees off the endangered list in 2017 {Trump Administration?}, leaving the slow-moving marine mammals listed only as threatened. They had been listed as endangered since 1973...

The petition...sponsored by (Florida-based Center for Biological Diversity,) the Save the Manatee Club, Miami Waterkeeper and others, contends that pollution from fertilizer runoff, leaking septic tanks, wastewater discharges and increased development is triggering algae blooms that have killed much of the seagrass on which manatees depend, especially on Florida’s east coast.

That resulted in the deaths mainly from starvation of a record 1,100 manatees in 2021 and is continuing this year, with at least 736 manatee deaths reported as of Nov. 11, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The 2021 deaths represented 13% of all manatees estimated to live in Florida waters...

The Fish and Wildlife Service has 90 days to determine whether restoring the manatee to endangered status is warranted and, if so, 12 months from the date of the petition to complete a review of the manatee’s status...


Four Years Ago the Trump Administration Said Manatees Weren’t Endangered Anymore. Now They’re Dying in Droves.
March 23, 2021 | FlaglerLive

In cold weather, Blue Spring State Park in mid-FL is magical place to view manatees: https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/blue-spring-state-park/manate...

joulukuu 2, 2022, 5:07 am

Marco Festa-Bianchet 🇺🇦 @festa_bianchet | 8:25 PM · Dec 1, 2022:
Professor of Ecology, University of Sherbrooke, Quebec

Canada: commercial fish (management) nearly science-free. Committee on Status of Endangered Wildlife assessed 48 (populations) of Pacific salmon/trout as imperilled. Federal (government) only listed 3 under Species at Risk Act, all trout not considered commercially valuable

Canada less likely to protect at-risk fish that people like to eat
Financially lucrative fish like Atlantic cod and Pacific salmon are less likely to be listed under Canada's Species At Risk Act
Jenn Thornhill Verma | Nov. 26, 2022

margd: Canada also hesitates to adequately protect L Ontario American Eel population: to do so would threaten hydropower in the St Lawrence R. (Female eels headed back to Sargasso Sea to spawn are diced in turbines. Research has yet to dissuade them...)

joulukuu 7, 2022, 4:43 am

Humanity has become ‘weapon of mass extinction’, UN head tells Cop15 launch
Patrick Greenfield | Tue 6 Dec 2022

Humanity has become a weapon of mass extinction and governments must end the “orgy of destruction”, the UN secretary general, António Guterres, has said at the beginning of the biodiversity Cop15.

“We are out of harmony with nature. In fact, we are playing an entirely different song. Around the world, for hundreds of years, we have conducted a cacophony of chaos, played with instruments of destruction. Deforestation and desertification are creating wastelands of once-thriving ecosystems...Our land, water and air are poisoned by chemicals and pesticides, and choked with plastics … The most important lesson we impart to children is to take responsibility for their actions. What example are we setting when we ourselves are failing this basic test?

... Canada’s environment minister, Steven Guilbeault, a former environmental activist, who said the 30% aim would be equivalent to the 1.5C climate target, although this is strongly disputed by some scientists and activists.

The target, known as “30x30”, is the most high-profile proposal under consideration by governments for this decade’s agreement to protect biodiversity. Led by the UK, Costa Rica and France, it has the backing of a coalition of more than 100 countries but faces significant concerns from some Indigenous peoples and human rights campaigners, who warn it could legitimise further land grabs and violence against communities shown to best protect nature...


joulukuu 7, 2022, 9:37 am

A die-off, (local) extirpation, commercial extinction of Alaska Snow Crabs attributed to climate change and, likely, overfishing(?) Political pressure to overfish cod (Canada), whales (Japan), and, looks like, Snow Crabs, follows similar pattern as large mammals (buffalo...). The tragedy of the commons.

Where Have All the Snow Crabs Gone?
Eleven billion crabs vanished. Is climate change really to blame?
Spencer Roberts | November 23, 2022

...While it’s likely that whatever happened to the crabs was catalyzed by climate, the question remains: What was it?...

...The great gatherings of crabs across the continental shelf formed a central pillar of once-astonishing Arctic ecosystems, supporting food webs culminating in sharks and whales in multitudes inconceivable in modern times. (NOAA's Braxton Dew) describes drifting over crab congregations spanning 90,000 acres, comparing them to the world’s most spectacular biological wonders. “Think of the great herds of the plains buffalo, or the almost indescribable abundance of the extinct passenger pigeon,” he said. The magnificent marches of Arctic crabs now take place alongside them, in memory.


tammikuu 12, 8:26 pm

Svante Pääbo: ‘It’s maybe time to rethink our idea of Neanderthals’
Kate Connolly | 12 January 2023

...At least half of the Neanderthal genome – probably as much as 60 to 70% of it, {Svante Pääbo, Swedish geneticist chosen as Nobel laureate for Medicine or physiology in 2022} believes – is to be found in living humans. “Which means that in effect Neanderthals are not really extinct at all, they are in us.”...


tammikuu 12, 10:40 pm

>66 margd: Funny but I was suspended for a time from pro and con (for a couple months anyway) for suggesting that one of our former members was a throwback to a time when neanderthals roamed the earth and here we all are running around with the neanderthal genome.

tammikuu 12, 11:35 pm

Happy I didn't give into temptation to speculate on who's hoarding all the Neanderthal genes! Seriously though, I think most of the ones I've read about have to do with immunity. Some benefit us, but some cause us problems with COVID. Africans have the fewest Neanderthal genes.

maaliskuu 3, 10:52 am

Rare bird not seen for 24 years found alive in Madagascan forests
Clare Wilson | 1 March 2023

The dusky tetraka, a small, ground-dwelling forest bird, hadn't been documented since 1999, but sightings of three individuals have now confirmed that the species is still alive.

...The sightings of the dusky tetraka, a small, ground-dwelling forest bird, may prompt a rewrite of ornithology textbooks, as the birds were seen by the rocky banks of mountain streams – not previously thought to be their favoured habitat.

The dusky tetraka (Xanthomixis tenebrosa), an olive bird with a yellow throat, was included in a top 10 “most wanted” list by the Search for Lost Birds, a conservation collaboration launched in 2021...


maaliskuu 28, 4:04 am

Of course, we did...

Meatball from long-extinct mammoth created by food firm
Exclusive: Australian company resurrects flesh of lost species to demonstrate potential of meat grown from cells
Damian Carrington | 28 Mar 2023

...In 2018, another company used DNA from an extinct animal to create gummy bears made from gelatine from a mastodon, another elephant-like animal.

...No one has yet tasted the mammoth meatball. “We haven’t seen this protein for thousands of years,” said Wolvetang. “So we have no idea how our immune system would react when we eat it. But if we did it again, we could certainly do it in a way that would make it more palatable to regulatory bodies.”...


maaliskuu 29, 5:31 pm

>70 margd: We have no idea how our immune systems would react? Many of us, Northern Europeans and Northern Asians and all Native Americans, have ancestors who ate this; is there any reason to think there's been massive mutations on those genes in the last 10,000 years. There's no evidence that anyone with ancestors from the Old World has died from eating llama or turkey or Muscovy duck. I can't find any mammal that's inedible, besides overdoses from vitamin A, which can happen from eating the liver of certain species.

maaliskuu 29, 5:56 pm

>71 prosfilaes: freezer burn? :D

maaliskuu 29, 9:24 pm

>71 prosfilaes:
Saber-tooth Tiger pâté gives me heartburn.

huhtikuu 12, 11:40 am

Barry W. Brook et al. 2023. Resolving when (and where) the Thylacine {Tasmanian Tiger} went extinct. Science of The Total Environment Volume 877, 15 June 2023. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2023.162878 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969723014948?via%3Dihub

...Contrary to the consensus, this iconic predator probably persisted until the 1980s {not 1936}

Like the Dodo and Passenger Pigeon before it, the predatory marsupial Thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus), or ‘Tasmanian tiger’, has become an iconic symbol of anthropogenic extinction. The last captive animal died in 1936, but even today reports of the Thylacine's possible ongoing survival in remote regions of Tasmania are newsworthy and capture the public's imagination. Extirpated from mainland Australia in the mid-Holocene, the island of Tasmania became the species' final stronghold. Following European settlement in the 1800s, the Thylacine was relentlessly persecuted and pushed to the margins of its range, although many sightings were reported thereafter—even well beyond the 1930s. To gain a new depth of insight into the extinction of the Thylacine, we assembled an exhaustive database of 1237 observational records from Tasmania (from 1910 onwards), quantified their uncertainty, and charted the patterns these revealed. We also developed a new method to visualize the species' 20th-century spatio-temporal dynamics, to map potential post-bounty refugia and pinpoint the most-likely location of the final persisting subpopulation. A direct reading of the high-quality records (confirmed kills and captures, in combination with sightings by past Thylacine hunters and trappers, wildlife professionals and experienced bushmen) implies a most-likely extinction date within four decades following the last capture (i.e., 1940s to 1970s). However, uncertainty modelling of the entire sighting record, where each observation is assigned a probability and the whole dataset is then subject to a sensitivity analysis, suggests that extinction might have been as recent as the late 1980s to early 2000s, with a small chance of persistence in the remote south-western wilderness areas. Beyond the intrinsically fascinating problem of reconstructing the final fate of the Thylacine, the new spatio-temporal mapping of extirpation developed herein would also be useful for conservation prioritization and search efforts for other rare taxa of uncertain status.

toukokuu 2, 8:15 am

Elephants Have Lost Nearly Two-Thirds of Their Habitat Across Asia
Asian elephant habitat loss coincides with colonial-era use of land and subsequent agricultural intensification, scientists say.
Melissa Breyer | April 27, 2023

...mainland China, India, Bangladesh, Thailand, Vietnam, and Sumatra have each lost more than half of their suitable elephant habitat range, with the greatest declines in China (around 94% of suitable habitat lost) and India (around 86% of suitable habitat lost)...


Shermin de Silva et al. 2023. Land-use change is associated with multi-century loss of elephant ecosystems in Asia. Scientific Reports volume 13, Article number: 5996 (27 April 2023) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-023-30650-8


We find that after several centuries of relative stability, nearly two-thirds of habitat suitable for elephants within the 13 elephant range countries declined within the past 300–500 years. A gradual negative trend in the extent of suitable habitat commences as early as the 1500 s, but shows marked acceleration during the 1700s...

...Given the depletion and fragmentation of suitable habitat, as well as elephants’ preference for secondary and regenerating habitat, attempts at dispersal outside the current range might be expected... However, these new agricultural landscapes, unlike agroecological systems of the past, are characterized by a greater degree of human antagonism towards wildlife which must be accounted for both in managing wildlife and land-uses. But protected areas in Asia tend to be small... and biased toward rugged terrain as well as higher elevations..., thus they cannot fully accommodate elephant populations. If remnant populations are to survive, the practice of driving them into ever-shrinking and marginal habitat must be replaced with attempts to adequately identify and connect areas of suitable habitat. Our results identify such areas at coarse scale, but more refined characterizations based on both ecological and human considerations are needed...


Muokkaaja: toukokuu 4, 9:50 am

I don't miss the bug-mess on car windshields, but sad to see insectivores--swallows--having to work so hard in spring to feed nestlings...

Samantha L. Rumschlag et al. 2023. Density declines, richness increases, and composition shifts in stream macroinvertebrates. Science Advances 3 May 2023. Vol 9, Issue 18. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.adf4896 Science Advances
3 May 2023 Vol 9, Issue 18. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.adf4896 https://www.science.org/doi/full/10.1126/sciadv.adf4896

Documenting trends of stream macroinvertebrate biodiversity is challenging because biomonitoring often has limited spatial, temporal, and taxonomic scopes. We analyzed biodiversity and composition of assemblages of more than 500 genera, spanning 27 years, and 6131 stream sites across forested, grassland, urban, and agricultural land uses throughout the United States. In this dataset, macroinvertebrate density declined by 11% and richness increased by 12.2%, and insect density and richness declined by 23.3 and 6.8%, respectively, over 27 years. In addition, differences in richness and composition between urban and agricultural versus forested and grassland streams have increased over time. Urban and agricultural streams lost the few disturbance-sensitive taxa they once had and gained disturbance-tolerant taxa. These results suggest that current efforts to protect and restore streams are not sufficient to mitigate anthropogenic effects.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 8, 6:44 am

The Great Lakes and especially the Mississippi R are rich in native, freshwater bivalve species. Invasive dreissenid mussels (zebra, quagga) threaten them by attaching with byssal threads (beard) preventing the native species from opening to feed, etc. Now it seems that invasive Round Goby prey upon native bivalves...

Kyle H. Clark et al. 2022. Freshwater unionid mussels threatened by predation of Round Goby (Neogobius melanostomus). (Nature) Scientific Reports volume 12, Article number: 12859 (27 July 2022) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-16385-y

toukokuu 13, 11:09 am

After a Wave of Bird Flu, More Than 20 California Condors Dead in the Southwest
Setting the species' recovery back by at least a decade, the crisis appears to be ebbing as the weather warms, with no new detections since April.
Zoe Grueskin | May 10, 2023

...Waterfowl have proven to be particularly susceptible to the current avian flu, a highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) identified as H5N1, and the flyways that they use while migrating pass mainly through California and along the coast. Carrion-eating condors could easily contract the disease by eating an infected bird, but the Arizona-Utah condors, also known as the southwest flock, live well outside the main path of the Pacific flyway. The flock’s location also means it never encounters condors from the four other re-established flocks in North America.

But on March 9, (Tim Hauck who helps manage the reintroduction of California Condors in Arizona and Utah) noticed a condor acting strangely when it arrived at the site where the team regularly puts out water and food for the birds...By mid-April, 20 birds had died, most of which tested positive for avian flu—a loss of 1 out of every 6 birds in the flock...

...From a precarious low of just 23 condors left in the world in 1984 to a population today that tops 500...


kesäkuu 15, 2:40 pm

Alex L. Pigot et al. 2023. Abrupt expansion of climate change risks for species globally. Nature Ecology & Evolution (18 May 2023) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-023-02070-4

Climate change is already exposing species to dangerous temperatures driving widespread population and geographical contractions. However, little is known about how these risks of thermal exposure will expand across species’ existing geographical ranges over time as climate change continues. Here, using geographical data for approximately 36,000 marine and terrestrial species and climate projections to 2100, we show that the area of each species’ geographical range at risk of thermal exposure will expand abruptly. On average, more than 50% of the increase in exposure projected for a species will occur in a single decade. This abruptness is partly due to the rapid pace of future projected warming but also because the greater area available at the warm end of thermal gradients constrains species to disproportionately occupy sites close to their upper thermal limit. These geographical constraints on the structure of species ranges operate both on land and in the ocean and mean that, even in the absence of amplifying ecological feedbacks, thermally sensitive species may be inherently vulnerable to sudden warming-driven collapse. With higher levels of warming, the number of species passing these thermal thresholds, and at risk of abrupt and widespread thermal exposure, increases, doubling from less than 15% to more than 30% between 1.5 °C and 2.5 °C of global warming. These results indicate that climate threats to thousands of species are expected to expand abruptly in the coming decades, thereby highlighting the urgency of mitigation and adaptation actions.

elokuu 5, 5:45 pm

Jeff Berardelli @WeatherProf | 9:10 PM · Aug 4, 2023:
WFLA-TV (Tampa Bay) Chief Meteorologist and Climate Specialist. BS Atmospheric Sciences Cornell U. MA Climate Columbia U. Past CBS News NY and Miami, Tampa, WPB

I don't think people understand how big of an impact humans have had on coral reefs. In little more than a generation we have wiped out the majority of coral cover. Warming waters, nutrient pollution from runoff and disease have taken a huge toll.

Table ( https://twitter.com/WeatherProf/status/1687632132338761728/photo/1 )
Source: @BillPrecht*

* https://scholar.google.com/citations?hl=en&user=cLDYyigAAAAJ

Muokkaaja: elokuu 25, 9:20 am

British Antarctic Survey 🐧 @BAS_News | 11:00 AM · Aug 24, 2023

You’ve heard about Antarctic sea ice lows - well, here’s the consequences.
Over 9,000 emperor penguin chicks from colonies in the Bellingshausen Sea are thought to have died in November 2022.
The sea ice they lived on broke up early, before they'd developed waterproof feathers.

1:00 ( https://twitter.com/BAS_News/status/1694726310139244570 )

Loss of sea ice causes catastrophic breeding failure for emperor penguins (press release)
British Antarctic Survey | 24 August, 2023

...The discovery supports predictions that over 90% of emperor penguin colonies will be quasi-extinct by the end of the century, based on current global warming trends...