Deforestation taking a heavy toll on international bird haven

IMAGE: Fork-tailed woodnymph
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Credit score: Pablo Negret

An evaluation has discovered deforestation is severely affecting forest fowl species in Colombia, house to the best variety of fowl species on the planet.

College of Queensland-led analysis, steered by Dr Pablo Negret, analysed the affect of deforestation on 550 fowl species, together with 69 solely discovered within the South American nation.

“Our examine has proven an astonishing discount in fowl species habitat,” Dr Negret mentioned.

“One third of the forest fowl species in Colombia have misplaced not less than a 3rd of their historic habitat, and that is simply utilizing the latest information we now have accessible – from 2015.

“Furthermore, 18 per cent or 99 species have misplaced greater than half of their historic habitat so far.

“By 2040, we anticipate it will improve to 38 per cent or 209 species.

“Sadly, lots of these species are endemic to the nation and should not at the moment categorised as threatened by the Worldwide Union for Conservation of Nature, suggesting that there are various unlisted species that face an imminent extinction menace from ongoing habitat loss.”

Dr Negret mentioned the outcomes had been regarding however not shocking.

“Deforestation is among the most important drivers of habitat loss for a lot of species within the tropics,” he mentioned.

“We all know that deforestation impacts 1000’s of species in these ecosystems, however our consideration is often centered on a tiny fraction – threatened and charismatic species.

“This examine supplies extra information on species beforehand thought ample which are really dwindling – hopefully we are able to shine a light-weight on them, to allow them to be recognised as underneath menace and do not fall by way of the cracks.”

The researchers used historic and current satellite tv for pc forest cowl information, whereas collating spatial info on different variables related to deforestation patterns.

UQ’s Professor Martine Maron mentioned the analysis would assist predict future habitat loss for already-threatened species.

“This system, and the applied sciences behind it, permit us to determine locations the place future habitat loss is predicted.

“Which means we are able to reveal the places the place threatened species are most certainly to lose valuable habitat, and prioritise their safety.

“And, in a rustic with rising threats to wealthy fowl variety, it pays to be forward of the sport.”

The authors hope the Colombian authorities and NGOs working on this house will use the analysis to information conservation of Colombia’s fowl species.

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The examine is revealed in Organic Conservation (DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2021.109044).

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