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Monday, November 27, 2006

Say Goodbye to Penguins: Marching off the Ice Shelf

The Emperor Penguin, Southern Rockhopper Penguin, Northern Rockhopper Penguin, Fiordland Crested Penguin, Snares Crested Penguin, Erect-crested Penguin, Macaroni Penguin, Royal Penguin, White-flippered Penguin, Yellow-eyed Penguin, African Penguin, and Humboldt Penguin are all in danger of extinction due to ice shelf melting, warmer Antarctic waters, and declining krill populations, for all of which you can thank global warming. But that's not all:

Each of the...penguins also faces threats in addition to global warming, ranging from introduced predators, disease, habitat destruction, disturbance at breeding colonies, oil spills, marine pollution, and in some cases, direct harvest. Many of the species are also impacted by industrial fisheries, either directly, such as when individual penguins are caught and killed in trawls, nets and longlines, or indirectly through the depletion of essential prey species such as anchovy and krill.

In related news, the Bush administration continues its tough love, kill 'em all and let God sort them out approach to global welfare:

The Bush administration finalized a proposal this month which would clear the way for an expanded U.S. fishing fleet for krill in the otherwise protected waters off Antarctica. “It is absurd and illegal that the Administration would authorize krill harvesting off Antarctica without even considering the well-documented impacts of global warming on krill stocks and the penguins,” said Brendan Cummings, Director of the Center’s Oceans Program.




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