By Eva Frederick, Science Magazine Oct. 10, 2019 , 12:15 PM
State birds can be a source of tremendous local pride—but as the climate warms, at least eight state birds may no longer call their native state home, The New York Times reports. In a new study, National Audubon Society scientists mapped the ranges of 604 North American bird species and used climate models to predict how the their habitats would change. Many species, the team concluded, would likely end up moving north to find their ideal habitats. For example, if temperatures rise 3°C above preindustrial levels—a plausible outcome, according to scientists—the common loon, Minnesota’s state bird, might bypass the state entirely and fly farther north to breed and hunt for food. Unfortunately, moving north might not be enough for many species—out of all types of bird studied, two-thirds face increasing risk of extinction as temperatures rise.
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