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“British Wildlife and Climate Change: Can Birds Fly from Climate Change?”

Climate change is already affecting our wildlife, leading to extinctions, changes in population size, distributional range, breeding performance, survival rates and phenology. There is evidence that not all birds may be able to fly from its impacts.


Climate change is already affecting our wildlife, leading to extinctions and changes in population size, distributional range, breeding performance, survival rates and phenology. Birds have been particularly well studied and we can benefit from the wealth of previous studies and analyses of existing long-term datasets to help understand the implications of climate change on wildlife. Dr Humphrey Crick will review studies of changes in phenology, breeding performance, population size, distributions and migratory behaviour on birds. The weakest form of evidence is in the form of anecdote (i.e. observations of distributional change without statistical correlations to climate change). Next there are studies of relationships between an aspect of biology and weather, with the inference that future changes in climate will cause long-term changes in the performance of an organism. Then there are observations of long-term changes that can be related to long-term changes in climate. The ideal, where we know the short-term mechanisms underlying observed long-term changes, is extremely rare, as are confident predictions of the consequences of long-term changes for aspects such as life-time reproductive success, fitness, population trajectories and distributional change. Birds, through flight, should be rather immune to the impacts of climate change because theoretically they should be able to fly from their current habitat to occupy new ones as conditions change. However, there is evidence building that not all birds may be able to fly from the impacts of climate change.

Dr Humphrey Crick is a Senior Ecologist at the British Trust for Ornithology who has studied the impacts of climate change on birds over the past 10 years. He has promoted the use of the extensive, nation-wide datasets held by the BTO which, by the long-term nature, provide fascinating insights into current changes in the light of past events. He was invited to help review the 3rd and 4th reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and has helped brief incoming Government Ministers on the effects of climate change on biodiversity.


Speaker(s):

Dr Humphrey Crick | talks

 

Date and Time:

2 November 2007 at 6:30 pm

Duration:

2 hours

 

Venue:

at a Birkbeck lecture theatre/University of London
London
London
W C1E
020 7679 1069
http://www.bbk.ac.uk/ce/environment/ecssociety/index.shtml
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Organised by:

Ecology and Conservation Studies Society
See other talks organised by Ecology and Conservation Studies Society...

 

Tickets:

Free

Available from:

For free tickets and venue details, contact tel: 020 7679 1069, or e-mail: environment@fce.bbk.ac.uk

Additional Information:

For queries on lecture content, contact tel: 020 7485 7903, or e-mail: jeremy.wright@walkern.org.uk

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