Birds Head North

Breeding ranges of northeastern US birds

12-01-2008 // Hannah Schardt

FOR THE FIRST TIME, scientists have documented that the breeding ranges of several northeastern U.S. bird species are moving north—some by as much as 40 miles, according to a new study by researchers at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. The study focused on 83 species that have long bred in New York and compared new population data with information from the early 1980s. Many of the species, including the Nashville warbler and the pine siskin, have shown a significant shift to the north, which researchers believe may be related to global warming. This doesn’t mean that the birds’ range is growing, warns author Benjamin Zuckerberg. “Their southern range boundaries are actually moving northward as well, at a much faster clip.”

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