Flotsam and Jetsam in the Human Wake

June 25, 2012 • Climate Change & Mitigation, News

Below are snippets of two articles reporting on current and expected demises of species we are ostensibly sharing the planet with — though “sharing” seems an exceptionally poor description of what is actually occurring. First, reports of significant, already occurred drops in penguin populations (with much more expected). Second, the troubles occurring In Kenya between humans and large predators, especially around Nairobi, as it rapidly expands. Of course, these are just two recent examples of an all too familiar theme here in the anthropocene.

Penguin populations plummet, climate change blamed

See: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/penguin-popluations-plummet-climate-change-blamed-article-1.1099337

Global warming is killing the main food source for some penguins, causing the populations of some species of the birds to fall by as much as a third in 20 years.

By Meghan Neal / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, Wednesday, June 20, 2012, 4:13 PM

Some penguin populations are feeling the heat from global warming, with one species culled by more than a third.

Thirty-six percent of chinstrap penguins – named after the black strip of feathers that runs across their white chins – have been wiped out over the last 20 years. Scientists blame the steep decline on rising temperatures melting large chunks of ice, new research shows.

The flightless birds depend on krill as the main source of their diet. The tiny shrimp-like creature attaches to chunks of ice in the Antarctic ocean. As the ice melts the krill population is dwindling, say researchers, who published the findings last month in the journal Polar Biology.

To read the full article, please click here: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/penguin-popluations-plummet-climate-change-blamed-article-1.1099337

Kenya’s growing population creates increased conflicts with wildlife

See: http://www.cleveland.com/world/index.ssf/2012/06/kenyas_growing_population_crea.html

Ilkeek-Lemedung’i, Kenya — Crouching at dawn in the savannah’s tall grass, the lions tore through the flesh of eight goats. Dogs barked, women screamed and men with the rank of warrior in this village of Maasai tribesman gathered their spears.

Kenya Wildlife Service rangers responded to the attack but arrived without a veterinarian and no way to tranquilize the eight lions and remove them from Ilkeek-Lemedung’i, a settlement of mud and stone homes not far from the edges of Nairobi National Park.

In the end, the Maasai men — who come from a tribe renowned for its hunting skills — grew tired of waiting, said Charity Kingangir, whose father’s goats were attacked Wednesday. The men speared the lions, killing six — two adult lionesses, two younger lions and two cubs.

The lions had killed eight goats, each worth about $60.

Wednesday’s killings highlight the growing threat to Kenya’s wildlife posed by the rapid expansion of its capital. A week earlier, residents from another village on Nairobi’s outskirts killed a leopard that had eaten a goat. Last month, wildlife service agents shot and killed a lion moving around the Nairobi suburb of Karen. On Thursday, three lions attacked and killed three goats outside Nairobi National Park. Rangers chased the lions back into the park.

To read the full article, please click here: http://www.cleveland.com/world/index.ssf/2012/06/kenyas_growing_population_crea.html

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