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Garry Rogers
Natural history news and information for animals, plants, and habitats.  See more at http://garryrogers.com.
Curated by Garry Rogers
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Vulnerability of biodiversity hotspots to global change

Vulnerability of biodiversity hotspots to global change | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

 http://t.co/t5iYsfgr7D

Results

Our findings show that hotspots may experience an average loss of 31% of their area under analogue climate, with some hotspots more affected than others (e.g. Polynesia–Micronesia). The greatest climate change was projected in low-latitude hotspots. The hotspots were on average suitable for 17% of the considered invasive species. Hotspots that are mainly islands or groups of islands were disproportionally suitable for a high number of invasive species both currently and in the future. We also showed that hotspots will increase their area of pasture in the future. Finally, combining the three threats, we identified the Atlantic forest, Cape Floristic Region and Polynesia–Micronesia as particularly vulnerable to global changes.

Main conclusions

Given our estimates of hotspot vulnerability to changes, close monitoring is now required to evaluate the biodiversity responses to future changes and to test our projections against observations.

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Invasive species and climate change threaten biodiversity everywhere. Invasive plants have already overrun one of my desert research areas in the central Great Basin Desert.  Invasive species are spreading in other desert areas now.

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Global Biodiversity Losses May Need to be Stopped with More Drastic Measures - Science World Report

Global Biodiversity Losses May Need to be Stopped with More Drastic Measures - Science World Report | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Science World Report Global Biodiversity Losses May Need to be Stopped with More Drastic Measures Science World Report The researchers examined the growing role that "conservation translocation," which is the movement and release of plants and...
Garry Rogers's insight:

Scientists roll up your sleeves.   University of Florida:  Require physical strength in those new hires.  Biodiversity needs some real help.

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Why We Need to Save Wildlife to Save Ourselves

Why We Need to Save Wildlife to Save Ourselves | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Midway through the new special issue of Science, about the global loss of wildlife, my heart caught on this idea: We now live with a steady, imperceptible loss “in people’s expectations of what the...
Garry Rogers's insight:

The essence of Aldo Leopold's "Land Ethic" is that human acceptance of the equality of other creatures is essential for the survival of all.

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Eben Lenderking's curator insight, July 25, 6:00 AM

Compelling argument for respect for the natural environment.

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BLM, Cattle, Wild Horses, and Biodiversity on Western U. S. Ranges

BLM, Cattle, Wild Horses, and Biodiversity on Western U. S. Ranges | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Are we sacrificing vegetation, soil, and biodiversity in the western U. S. to protect domestic cows?
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Just One Road Can Destroy a Forest

Just One Road Can Destroy a Forest | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
keeping wild areas free of roads is a remarkably cost-efficient way of protecting biodiversity and keeping the planet cool
Garry Rogers's insight:

As roads increase, biodiversity declines, and Earth warms. The "Road-Free" initiative might have lost steam, but you can help.  Go to http://roadfree.org and register to show your support.

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How should "Flathead National Forest 2.0" look? | Conservation

How should "Flathead National Forest 2.0" look? | Conservation | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Montana's Flathead Forest is one of the most biologically diverse areas of our country, but it needs some work to become more effective for conservation.

"In the northwestern corner of Montana just next to Glacier National Park sits the 2.4 million acre Flathead National Forest. It’s a part of the massive and biodiverse “Crown of the Continent” ecosystem, and is part of a broader collection of protected areas stretching all the way down to Yellowstone. It’s home to more than one thousand native plant species, 70 mammals, and 260 birds. It’s home to iconic American megafauna, like grizzly bears and grey wolves, along with mountain lions, wolverines, lynx, and fishers.

"Starting in the 1930s, concerned citizens and government officials have worked to protect this region, and while it remains mostly unaffected by development, it is starting to suffer the effects of climate change. As glaciers disappear from nearby Glacier National Park, the region will see warmer winters and summers, decreasing snowpack, earlier spring melts, reduced stream flows, and a longer, more severe wildfire season. The animals there will increasingly need more space to roam as their food sources and habitats change with the climate."

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Following 'Rim Fire,' what should be done with the trees left behind? | The Rundown | PBS NewsHour

Following 'Rim Fire,' what should be done with the trees left behind? | The Rundown | PBS NewsHour | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
A year after a California wildfire known as the “Rim Fire” burnt through over 250,000 acres of Sierra Nevada forests, environmentalists and loggers are debating what to do with the blackened woodland it left behind. The timber industry believes that chopping … Continue reading →
Garry Rogers's insight:

Logging healthy forests destroys soil microorganisms and reduces forest diversity.  Logging burned forests is even more destructive.  Access roads and equipment movements promote erosion, introduce weeds, damage surviving undergrowth, and crush the new tree seedlings that would replace the original forest.  Logging these fragile environments reduces watershed values and slows recovery.  Only an agency such as the U. S. Forest Service that is controlled by the profit-motivated logging industry would approve logging a burned forest.   

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Hundreds of animals disappear as humans multiply

Hundreds of animals disappear as humans multiply | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
As the number of humans on Earth has nearly doubled over the past four decades, the number of bugs, slugs, worms and crustaceans has declined by 45 per cent, say researchers.


Meanwhile, the larger loss of wildlife big and small across the planet may be a key driver of growing violence and unrest, said another study in the journal Science as part of a special series on disappearing animals.


Invertebrates are important to the Earth because they pollinate crops, control pests, filter water and add nutrients to the soil.

The decline of invertebrates is similar to that of land-based vertebrates, according to an analysis of scientific literature by an international team including Ben Collen of University College London.

Among animals with backbones that live on land, 322 species have disappeared in the past five centuries, and the remaining species show about a 25 per cent decline in abundance.

"We were shocked to find similar losses in invertebrates as with larger animals, as we previously thought invertebrates to be more resilient," says Collen.

Garry Rogers's insight:

The numbers are staggering.  Every new bit of research shows it's worse than I thought.  Every bit of good news is so small compared to the bad.  We have to stay engaged--sign the petitions, send the emails, make the calls. 

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Global Warming

Global Warming | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Northern Canada is On Fire, And It's Making Global Warming Worse For the past few weeks, dry and warm weather have fueled large forest fires across Canada's remote Northwest Territories. The extent of those fires is well above average for the year to-date, and is in line with climate trends of more fires burning in the northern reaches of the globe.

Of the 186 wildfires in the Northwest Territories to-date this year, 156 of them are currently burning. That includes the Birch Creek Fire complex, which stretches over 250,000 acres.

The amount of acres burned in the Northwest Territories is six times greater than the 25-year average to-date according to data from the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Center.

Boreal forests like those in the Northwest Ter..
Garry Rogers's insight:

Increasing fire occurrence means that a site is more likely to be burned a second time before the vegetation can recover.  This quickly leads to a reduction in diversity and stability.

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Invasive Plants in the Sonoran Desert | Wild Sonora

Invasive Plants in the Sonoran Desert | Wild Sonora | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Fire-prone invasive plants introduced from Africa and Asia are reducing the intervals between fires below the colonization and recovery capability of desert vegetation.
Garry Rogers's insight:

Invasive species, like storm troopers leading the surging ruin of global warming, are demolishing Earth's ecosystems.

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Great biodiversity cartoonists

Great biodiversity cartoonists | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Anyone who reads CB.com knows that I like to inject a bit of humour into my (often gloomy) messages. Sniggering, chortling, groaning and outright guffawing are useful ways to deal with the depressing topics conservation scientists examine every day. This is why I started the ‘Cartoon of the Week’ series, and now I have a compendiumof quite a few biodiversity-related cartoons. Cartoons can also serve as wonderfully effective political tools if they manage to encapsulate the preposterousness of bad policies, navel-gazing politicians or Earth-buggering corporate tycoons. A good cartoon can be far more effective at transmitting a deep and complex message to a wide audience than most scientific articles.

Who are these gifted artists that bring together wit, humour and hard environmental truths into something that practically every scientist  wants to include in conference presentations? I am inspired by some of these people, as I’m sure are many of you, so I decided to put together a little list of some of today’s better biodiversity cartoonists.

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Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  You will love these cartoons.

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Don’t Forget Butterflies! Our Pollination Crisis Is About More Than Honeybees

Don’t Forget Butterflies! Our Pollination Crisis Is About More Than Honeybees | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
When the White House signed an order on pollinator health last week, it included all pollinators -- not just honeybees.
Garry Rogers's insight:

Dropping pesticides and interspersing food plants with crops will help pollinators, but there are other things to consider.  Construction, farming, logging, livestock grazing, invasive species, and toxic pollutants (including greenhouse gasses) are eliminating habitat much faster than farmers are recovering it.  Until humans control their population and correct the ways they use resources, pollinators and other species will continue to decline. 

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