Though I mostly stay put these days, no longer inclined to move very far beyond my home range, apparently I’m intensely curious about the subject of bird migration, which came up in questions I asked during several favorite podcast interviews in 2019.
The miracle of bird migration is a subject of much intensive study, especially in this age of rapid climate change. Migration actually originally evolved in large part as a response to changing climate, but of a far more gradual nature over the millennia and longer. Now scientists wonder how species will adapt–or if they can–to current faster shifts.
At the end of 2019, Colorado State University, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and the University of Massachusetts published research based on analysis of 24 years of weather radar data, showing that the timing of spring bird migration across North America is shifting as a result of climate change. They saw a strong alignment between temperature and migration timing, especially in the fastest-warming regions.
On my latest podcast, I look back at other things I learned about migration in 2019.