Climate change impacts all animals, but some more than others, suggests a new report issued by the Wildlife Conservation Society.
The report, "Species Feeling the Heat: Connecting Deforestation and Climate Change," was released today just as representatives from 190 different countries are meeting in Copenhagen to discuss global efforts to control industrial emissions and the warming of the planet.
The WCS report profiles more than a dozen animal species and groups that are facing threats due to climate change impacts. These include:
-changing land and sea temperatures
-shifting rain patterns
-exposure to new pathogens and disease
-increased threats of predation
Did you know that nearly 20 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions are due to deforestation? That's more than the output of all of the world's trucks, trains, cars, planes and other modes of transportation.
Also, as the report points out, we need to rethink our image of animals affected by climate change.
"The image of a forlorn looking polar bear on a tiny ice floe has become the public's image of climate change in nature, but the impact reaches species in nearly every habitat in the world's wild places," said Steven E. Sanderson, president and CEO of the WCS. "In fact, our own researchers are observing direct impacts on a wide range of species across the world."
(Image: Musk ox; Credi: Steve Zack)
Here are just a few:
"Aside from all of the current political disagreements on meteorological data, we can say with certainty that climate change is threatening our planet with significant losses to wildlife and wild places," concluded Sanderson.
The new report features some beautiful full-color photographs and other information. Take a look: Download SpeciesBrochure.fin2.12.2