In Japan, agriculture has made the birds disappear - DALTONHURD

In Japan, agriculture has made the birds disappear

A new study [parue le 25 mai dans Proceedings of the Royal Society B] reveals that more than 70% of the number of birds – and a similar proportion of the number of avian species – have disappeared in the Ishikari Plain in northwestern Japan. Formerly occupied by hunter-gatherers, this region was converted into arable land a century and a half ago.

Munehiro Kitazawa’s team from Hokkaido University compared maps from different eras to track how the region’s landscape has changed since the introduction of large-scale agriculture in 1869. The result: the surprise to discover that a large proportion of the birds of the forests and wetlands that lived there had disappeared. In addition, these species have been partially replaced by crows, larks and other species that like fields and rice paddies, reports the researcher. [premier auteur de l’étude].

“These findings are of global significance,” comments Chase Mendenhall, of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh – he was not involved in this study.

“We can learn a lot here about how biodiversity responds and adapts to change.”

For fifteen thousand years, the Ainu, a

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New Scientist (London)

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