When the Weather is for the Birds

Black vulture range lags behind climate change

The Black Vulture has expanded its range northward and now occurs in parts of Massachusetts where the minimum winter temperature is similar to that in Baltimore, Maryland in 1975. Photo by Liz Malyszek

Citizen scientists noticed the impact of a mild winter in the United States and Canada this year, reflected in the species composition of the birds tallied during the Great Backyard Bird Count, reports an article in ScienceNow, the online news service of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). You can also read the press release from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

However, birds are not responding quite so quickly to overall climate trends, says a paper in the Journal of Animal Ecology (fee or subscription required to view entire article). It’s more work from the Cornell Lab of O, but this time the press release is from Cornell University.

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