Climate change has caused some animals to modify their morphology, with beaks or larger ears, to better adapt and organize their bodies as the planet warms, according to a study released Wednesday.
The study, published in the journal “Trends in Ecology and Evolution,” was conducted by scientists at Deakin University in Victoria, Australia.
“It’s time to realize that animals also need to adapt to these changes, but they happen in a shorter period of time than expected, from an evolutionary perspective,” said Sarah Riding, lead researcher on the project.
Specifically, the study highlights the changes that occur in birds.
Australian parrot record A increase in beak Four to 10% since 1871, as well as the dark-eyed reed (a small singing bird) from North America, which has also seen its beaks grow. In addition to evolving bird beaks, wood rats also showed a increase in tails The masked shrew a leg growth.
To understand morphological changes in animals, Sarah Riding analyzed specimens from Australian bird museums from the past 100 years. The researcher cautioned, however, that changes in species structure do not mean “all is well”.
“[A mudança] This means that they evolve to survive climate change, but we don’t know the other environmental consequences of the changes and whether, in fact, all species are able to do that and survive,” he said.
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