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Morgan Tingley on ways climate change is affecting animal species

Rising ‘divorce’ rates among albatrosses, invasive fire ants are thriving in warmer soil, tuberculosis risks in meerkats increasing… Animal ecology is changing as our planet warms. UCLA‘s Morgan Tingly weighs in on how Amazonian birds are shrinking. 

Tingley, who studies birds, said a general hypothesis surrounding this phenomenon is that animals must shrink as temperatures rise to become more “thermo-efficient” and regulate body heat.

“Because as things get warmer, it’s basically more sort of thermo-efficient to have a smaller body size because you can dissipate heat more effectively,” he said.