Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search


New science confirms warming climate bad for forest birds

Kiwi, kākā and whio are just some of the native forest birds at risk of being wiped out as introduced predators increase with climate change.

New research from Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research has found that predator-vulnerable native forest birds are becoming more restricted to higher, colder parts of remaining forests.

The main reason for what the scientists are calling ‘thermal squeeze’ is likely to be more relentless pressure from higher numbers of introduced predators in lower, warmer forests.

The situation is likely to worsen with climate change, which will reduce the extent of cooler refuges where predator numbers are lower for much of the time.

“Warming temperatures make life easier for introduced predators like stoats, rats and possums and this is bad news for our forest birds. This is another reason why we need to take action to reduce global warming and also continue to ramp up pest control,” says Forest & Bird spokesperson Geoff Keey.

The forest bird species most imminently endangered by thermal squeeze in New Zealand are larger-bodied, and include some of the rarest forest birds remaining on the mainland such as kiwi, whio, weka, and kōkako. Birds that nest in holes and therefore vulnerable to being attacked and eaten on the nest are the next most vulnerable and this includes rifleman, mohua, kākā, kea, and kākāriki.

“It’s vital that the Zero Carbon Bill has strong, binding targets to cut emissions and recognises the role of nature in our response to climate change. As well as cutting emissions, we need to help make nature more resilient in face of unavoidable climate change,” says Mr Keey.

The authors of the paper are Susan Walker, Adrian Monks and John Innes of Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Bus-iness: Transdev To Acquire More Auckland And Wellington Operations

Transdev Australasia today announced that it has agreed terms to acquire two bus operations in Auckland and Wellington, reaching agreement with Souter Investments to purchase Howick and Eastern Buses and Mana Coach Services. More>>


Māui And Hector’s Dolphins: WWF/Industry Counter Offer On Threat Management Plan

Forest & Bird says WWF-NZ's plan for protecting Māui dolphins is based on testing unproven methods on a species that is almost extinct, and is urging the Government to reject the proposal. More>>


Industry Report: Growing Interactive Sector Wants Screen Grants

Introducing a coordinated plan that invests in emerging talent and allows interactive media to access existing screen industry programmes would create hundreds of hi-tech and creative industry jobs. More>>


Ground Rules: Government Moves To Protect Best Growing Land

“Continuing to grow food in the volumes and quality we have come to expect depends on the availability of land and the quality of the soil. Once productive land is built on, we can’t use it for food production, which is why we need to act now.” More>>