News on the Wing: November Edition

TheIMG_20180615_155811 World Wildlife Fund recently released its Living Planet Report 2018, and the news is dire for the world’s wildlife.  The following are a few of the sobering statistics highlighted in the report:

“OUR LIVING PLANET, AT A GLANCE

60%  – Populations of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians have, on average, declined by 60% between 1970 and 2014, the most recent year with available data.

50% – The Earth is estimated to have lost about half of its shallow water corals in the past 30 years.

20% – A fifth of the Amazon has disappeared in just 50 years.

$125 trillion – Globally, nature provides services worth around $125 trillion a year, while also helping ensure the supply of fresh air, clean water, food, energy, medicines, and much more.”

We are not only destroying the natural world, we are also putting ourselves in peril.  There’s not much time for humans to stand up for nature and develop concrete, sustainable plans to reduce and turn around the damage already done to wildlife and the planet.

Read the WWF’s Living Planet Report 2018 here.

Read our November Edition of News on the Wing here.

News on the Wing – October Edition

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It’s hard to keep up with all the bird-related news and happenings on social media, so why not head on over to News on the Wing to see some of the best Tweets captured over the last few weeks!

If there are news articles or events from social media you think we should highlight in upcoming editions of The Roost, send us a DM on Twitter – @theroostonline with the details!

The earliest known animal? — Why Evolution Is True

The Ediacaran fauna, a group of extinct species that lived between 571 and 541 million years ago, has been an evolutionary anomaly. Its fossil record contains multicellular organisms, but they are just plain weird, bearing little resemblance to present-day metazoan (multicellular) animals. The two species of “dickinsoniids” shown below, for example, lack a mouth or […]

via The earliest known animal? — Why Evolution Is True

September Issue is Out!

Sept announcement

Some of the highlights in our September Edition include:

  • Morty’s sage advice to Chiyome and flock
  • Zack and Bubbles try to help mom with her spatial challenges
  • The Trump Administration’s threat to weaken the Endangered Species Act
  • A new search-a-word
  • A collection of posts from around social media, including everyday heroes doing their part to save species, environments and habitats for future generations of wildlife and humans alike

Head on over to the blog to read these and many more interesting articles and posts!

Origin of the species: where did Darwin’s finches come from? – the guardian.com

Galápagos finches have been the subject of a plethora of evolutionary studies, but where did the first ones come from?

Four of the species of finch observed by Darwin on the Galápagos Islands, showing variation of beak.
Four of the species of finch observed by Darwin on the Galápagos Islands, showing variation of beak. Photograph: Ann Ronan Pictures/Print Collector/Getty Images

When the first of the Galápagos Islands arose from the ocean floor around 3m years ago, they were naked, angry, lava-spewing cones devoid of life. Now, millions of years later, they are alive with some of the world’s most iconic animals. Giant tortoises. Sea iguanas. Flightless cormorants. And those finches equipped with Swiss army knife beaks.

The Galápagos finches are probably one of the most well-known examples of evolution and will forever be tightly linked to Charles Darwin’s voyage and his theory of natural selection (although you may be surprised to learn that the Galápagos finches were not as central to Darwin’s theory as we like to think). With their diversity of bill sizes and shapes, each species has adapted to a specific type of food; the ground-finch (Geospiza) has a thick beak adapted to feeding on a variety of crunchy seeds and arthropods, whereas the warbler finch (Certhidea olivacea) developed a slender, pointy bill to catch tasty insects hiding between the foliage. The woodpecker finch(Camarhynchus pallidus) even uses twigs or cactus spines to pry arthropods out of treeholes

Read the full article here.