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Even Familiar Bird Species Now In Danger

by Staff Correspondent
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Ashish Saurabh | The TrickyScribe: Leave endangered bird species like Giant Ibis, California Condor, Kakapo, Kagu, Bengal Florican, Forest Owlet, Philippine Eagle, Christmas Island Frigatebird and Sumatran Ground-Cuckoo apart that are on verge of extinction, the extinction crisis has spread so far that even some familiar species are now in danger.Infographic: One In Eight Bird Species Threatened With Extinction | Statista You will find more infographics at Statista

The 2018 State of the World’s Birds report points out to the same. The study claims that one in every eight species of bird is threatened with extinction across the world. The report, published by BirdLife International, was five years in the making and paints a dreary picture for many recognizable species including Atlantic Puffin, European Turtle-dove and Snowy Owl.

Threats driving the avian extinction crisis are many and varied, but invariably of humanity’s making

Largely, 40 percent of the nearly 11,000 bird species are on decline course. As many as 222 species (2 percent) are marked critically endangered while 461 (4 percent) are classified as endangered. Another 786 species are considered vulnerable (7 percent) while 1,017 (9 percent) are described as near threatened.

The grim statistics aren’t just bad news for bird populations. They are bad news for the planet as a whole as health of bird species is a key measure for the state of ecosystems in general.

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New report from BirdLife International, which looks at the health of bird populations worldwide, indicate a global threat to instantly recognizable bird species including Snowy Owl, Atlantic Puffin and European Turtle-dove.

The report, which was five years in the making, is BirdLife International’s flagship science publication. The major global assessment uses the health of bird populations to “take the pulse of the planet.”

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Unfortunately, the global picture painted in the report is a dire one for many birds around the world. Overall, it shows that 40 percent of the world’s 11,000 bird species are in decline, and one in eight bird species is threatened with global extinction.

These statistics aren’t just bad news for birds they are warnings for the planet as a whole. Health of bird species is a good measure of the state of ecosystems in general. Because birds are so widespread, being found in nearly every type of ecosystem and one of the most studied groups of animals, they are excellent indicators of the state of the environment.

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One of the greatest of those threats, according to the report, is agriculture. The expansion of agriculture, as well as its intensification, impacts 1,091 (74 percent) of globally threatened birds. One example of how agriculture is negatively impacting birds can be found in the neurotoxic insecticides known as neonicotinoids or ‘neonics’.

A recent American study found that migrating White-crowned Sparrows Zonotrichia leucophrys exposed to neonicotinoids lost a quarter of their body mass and fat stores. The neurotoxin also impaired the birds’ ability to navigate while migrating.

 

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