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Author Topic: Is climate change making animals move?  (Read 3951 times)

Offline thedoc

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Is climate change making animals move?
« on: 23/08/2011 18:05:39 »
Animals overheated by climate change are heading uphill and away from the equator, new research has shown.

Read the whole story on our website by clicking here

  
« Last Edit: 23/08/2011 18:05:39 by _system »


 

Offline CliffordK

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #1 on: 21/08/2011 18:00:55 »
Interesting study, although I'm only able to find summaries online and not the original paper.

So, if everything has been moving away from the Equator....  What is living AT the equator?

In many senses, this should be taken as a good sign.  Species are adapting to the changing environment...  which has continuously been changing since the beginning of time.  In fact, any stability over the last 10,000 years should be considered more as the exception to the rule, rather than the rule itself.  But, there is growing evidence that even through the Holocene, the climate hasn't been as stable as some people might want to believe.

I would have to ask though, how much of this is being caused by habitat destruction and encroachment of habitat by Humans (who often put our farms in the valleys, and force the remaining animals into the mountains).  Also, increased habitat from imported invasive species imported by humans. Not to mention over hunting and fishing.  Certainly some species flourish in Urban/Suburban environments, as well as heavy agricultural environments, some don't.

I might worry that a meta-study might make conclusions that would be beyond the scope of the original studies.
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #2 on: 23/08/2011 00:44:47 »
I wonder how long it will take for polar bears to get brown fur and start raiding picnics?  I suppose some animals have run out of space to move............ if your an animal adapted to conditions at the equator then at least that gives you some scope for movement to better climatic conditions. 

It's not only the animals that are moving either, people are doing it too. I predicted this years ago and I also predict that at some point there is going to be huge conflicts as so called immigrants seek better living conditions on greener pastures.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #3 on: 23/08/2011 05:48:31 »
I wonder how long it will take for polar bears to get brown fur and start raiding picnics?

With zero sunlight in the winter, the arctic will continue to ice over every winter.

The Arctic Fox as well as the Arctic Hare and some other animals have adapted to the natural arctic climate variation (summer/winter cycles) with a white coat in the winter, and a brown coat in the summer.  The Polar Bear doesn't currently have that adaptation. 

It's not only the animals that are moving either, people are doing it too. I predicted this years ago and I also predict that at some point there is going to be huge conflicts as so called immigrants seek better living conditions on greener pastures.

People have been migrating to "greener pastures" certainly for the last 1000 years of relative modern history, but it could also be described as a a major driving force behind the last 5,000,000 years of human history and evolution.

There is a new term called "Climate Refugees" or "Environmental Migrant"

Yet, many of the areas at greatest risk for displacement are those with out of control population growth.  It is unclear if the number of people predicted to be displaced due to climate impacts are equal to the predicted population growth in those areas.  Or, potentially those with the least sustainable agricultural practices.
 

Offline imatfaal

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #4 on: 23/08/2011 10:47:55 »
I wonder how long it will take for polar bears to get brown fur and start raiding picnics? 

Polar Bears are already inter-breeding with other north american bears (i think it was grizzlies) producing white bears with dirty faces.  I will dig out the original nature article and post a link
 

Offline Geezer

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #5 on: 23/08/2011 17:02:13 »
Not that it has anything to do with polar bears, but I read something in the paper the other day about a recent dramatic increase in the Antarctic ice pack because of much greater snowfall in the Southern Hemisphere in recent times. Is anyone familiar with the details?

It's usually hot and dry here in the summer, but it's been really dry this year. We only had a trace amount of rain in July, and, so far, none at all in August. Ironically, we live in what is officially classified as a rain forest :D
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Is climate change making animals move?
« Reply #6 on: 23/08/2011 19:19:44 »
Sadly it is putting some animals at grave risk of staying very still; permanently.

"In 2008, the white lemuroid possum was reported to be the first known mammal species to be driven extinct by man-made global warming. However, these reports were based on a misunderstanding. One population of these possums in the mountain forests of northern Queensland is severely threatened by climate change as the animals cannot survive extended temperatures over 30 °C. However, another population 100 kilometres south remains in good health.[11]" (from wiki)
 

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Is climate change making animals move?
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