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Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes.

Publication ,  Journal Article
Medina, W; Huang, RM; Pimm, SL
Published in: Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
October 2023

Local studies show upslope shifts in the distribution of tropical birds in response to warming temperatures. Unanswered is whether these upward shifts occur regionally across many species. We considered a nearly 2000-km length of the Northern Andes, where deforestation, temperature, and extreme weather events have increased during the past decades. Range-restricted bird species are particularly vulnerable to such events and occur in exceptionally high numbers in this region. Using abundant crowd-sourced data from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology database, eBird, and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, we documented distributions of nearly 200 such species. We examined whether species shifted their elevational ranges over time by comparing observed versus expected occurrences below a low elevational threshold and above a high elevational threshold for 2 periods: before and after 2005. We predicted fewer observations at lower elevations (those below the threshold) and more at upper elevations (those above the threshold) after 2005. We also tested for deforestation effects at lower elevations within each species' distribution ranges. We compared relative forest loss with the differences between observed and expected occurrences across the elevational range. Species' retreats from lower elevations were ubiquitous and involved a 23-40% decline in prevalence at the lowest elevations. Increases at higher elevations were not consistent. The retreats occurred across a broad spectrum of species, from predominantly lowland to predominantly highland. Because deforestation showed no relationship with species retreats, we contend that a warming climate is the most parsimonious explanation for such shifts.

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Published In

Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology

DOI

EISSN

1523-1739

ISSN

0888-8892

Publication Date

October 2023

Volume

37

Issue

5

Start / End Page

e14127

Related Subject Headings

  • Ecology
  • Conservation of Natural Resources
  • Climate Change
  • Climate
  • Birds
  • Biodiversity
  • Animals
  • Altitude
  • 4104 Environmental management
  • 3109 Zoology
 

Citation

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ICMJE
MLA
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Medina, W., Huang, R. M., & Pimm, S. L. (2023). Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes. Conservation Biology : The Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology, 37(5), e14127. https://doi.org/10.1111/cobi.14127
Medina, Wilderson, Ryan M. Huang, and Stuart L. Pimm. “Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes.Conservation Biology : The Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology 37, no. 5 (October 2023): e14127. https://doi.org/10.1111/cobi.14127.
Medina W, Huang RM, Pimm SL. Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes. Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology. 2023 Oct;37(5):e14127.
Medina, Wilderson, et al. “Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes.Conservation Biology : The Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology, vol. 37, no. 5, Oct. 2023, p. e14127. Epmc, doi:10.1111/cobi.14127.
Medina W, Huang RM, Pimm SL. Region-wide retreats from lower elevations of range-restricted birds across the Northern Andes. Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology. 2023 Oct;37(5):e14127.
Journal cover image

Published In

Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology

DOI

EISSN

1523-1739

ISSN

0888-8892

Publication Date

October 2023

Volume

37

Issue

5

Start / End Page

e14127

Related Subject Headings

  • Ecology
  • Conservation of Natural Resources
  • Climate Change
  • Climate
  • Birds
  • Biodiversity
  • Animals
  • Altitude
  • 4104 Environmental management
  • 3109 Zoology