Does Global Warming Threaten Bird Habitats?
Written by Dr. James J. S. Johnson in the latest Acts And Facts about birds, especially the Tricolored Heron, being affected by the threats of global warming.
“If you love birds, should you fight petroleum production in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions? How you answer depends on whether you believe man-made global warming is threatening Earth’s climate. That crisis scenario is actually based on evolutionary old-earth assumptions,1 and constant media stories feed the fear.
An amateur naturalist recently sounded the global-warming alarm over tricolored herons expanding their range. He reported that about three-quarters of the population lived in Louisiana in 1976, but now many are relocating northward up the Atlantic coast.2 He had little trouble identifying the culprits:
Isolated islands, prime breeding grounds safe from land-based predators, are being lost everywhere to rising sea levels and devastating storms. The tricolor I was watching was apparently trying to adapt to a rapidly warming planet. It had arrived earlier and farther north than its ancestors ever did [sic].…Birds everywhere are being threatened by the climate crisis. The fossil fuel lobby and its enablers in Washington, DC, are handing tricolors and thousands of other species a life-threatening legacy.2
But wait! Are the fossil fuel lobby and the politically powerful petroleum industry really villains that are forcing the poor tricolored herons to migrate—in temperature-troubled desperation—to a Virginia wildlife refuge “farther north” than their ancestors had ever been? No, because the same writer admitted that earlier heron generations had populated eastern America outside of Louisiana….