(CBC News, 12 May 2009) -- Songbirds living in the boreal forest are declining at a rapid rate and need protection by federal and provincial governments, according to a group of environmentalists and scientists. Migratory birds dependent on the 5.6 million square kilometres of boreal forest, such as the Canada warbler, rusty blackbird and olive-sided flycatcher, have faced particularly steep declines, according to the Boreal Songbird Initiative, which has collected more than 60,000 signatures on a petition calling for greater protection for the forest. "The boreal forest is widely regarded as the songbird nursery for the Americas," Ontario Nature executive director Caroline Schultz said at a press conference at Queen's Park in Toronto on Tuesday. "Millions of birds migrate there to nest and breed in Ontario alone. We cannot afford to lose any more of this precious habitat than we already have," she said. Ontario Nature was one of several groups across the country that planned events in six provinces and the Northwest Territories on Tuesday to call attention to the declining songbird numbers.
Posted 13 May 2009; 12:23:16 PM. Permalink
(IceNews, 13 May 2009) -- The stock of common cliff-nesting seabirds in Iceland has dropped by 20 to 40 percent in the last two decades. The five most numerous species (except the puffin) were counted on bird cliffs in 2005-2008. The census was a rerun of a similar count in 1983-86. When the results were correlated and compared, it became obvious that numbers had dropped – some seriously, mbl.is reports. The Brunnich’s guillemot count was only 56 percent of its previous total; and fulmar numbers were found to be at 69 percent their previous total. The guillemot population is at 70 percent its previous strength and there were also fewer kittiwake and razorbill. To put the figures in context, the number of fulmars has dropped from roughly 1.3 million nesting pairs to 900,000. Guillemots pairs have gone down from 990,000 to 660,000 and Brunnich’s guillemots number 330,000 pairs; but there were 580,000 twenty years ago. The rate of reduction in numbers of individual species was different according to region.
Posted 13 May 2009; 10:54:24 AM. Permalink