Climate change threatens the carnival of the animals

Comparing predictions and measurements of the effects of climate change on plants and animals over the past five years shows predictions calling it “one of the major threats to global biodiversity” are accurate, and possibly optimistic, according to the University of Exeter's Ilya Maclean. The risk from climate change to moths, and other members of the order "lepidoptera", like butterflies have been relatively well studied, but for other insects knowledge remains scarce. Credit: Ohio State University

Comparing predictions and measurements of the effects of climate change on plants and animals over the past five years shows predictions calling it “one of the major threats to global biodiversity” are accurate, and possibly optimistic, according to the University of Exeter's Ilya Maclean. The risk from climate change to moths, and other members of the order "lepidoptera", like butterflies have been relatively well studied, but for other insects knowledge remains scarce. Credit: Ohio State University

Humans’ success at spreading across the world has long worked with changes in climate to doom other animals. Our hunting is one cause suggested by scientists of big mammals like woolly mammoths disappearing about 10,000 years ago. Other researchers say that climate drove some creatures extinct, while human hunger made things worse for others. But now that humans are changing the climate and competing with animals for space, food and other resources, we pose them a double danger.

Since Simple Climate started, I’ve regularly reported how man-made climate change is further eroding the variety of life on Earth. That variety is considered to indicate the planet’s health. This week, I thought I’d bring together a few pictures as a reminder of which creatures are at risk. Hopefully, they’ll provide a little extra motivation to cut greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the pressure these animals are under. Click on the pictures to read the original blog posts. Read the rest of this entry »