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Jun. 10, 2011

Tropical trouble: Bats in heat (hot temperatures, that is)

by Neil Wagner

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From the Yale e360 article by William Laurance, Distinguished Research Professor and an Australian Laureate at James Cook University in Queensland, Australia:

Much attention has been paid to how global warming is affecting the world’s polar regions and glaciers. But a leading authority on tropical forests warns that rising temperatures could have an equally profound impact on rainforests and are already taking a toll on some tropical species…
flying foxes, or giant fruit bats, normally just doze in the treetops through the day, but on this afternoon they were fanning themselves, panting frantically, jostling for shady spots, and licking their wrists in a desperate effort to cool down. Suddenly, when the thermometer hit 42 degrees C, the bats began falling from the trees. Most quickly died… Only a few such mass die-offs were ever recorded before 1994.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT ON EARTH?…

Interview: Katie Kline, Communications Officer at Ecological Society of America interviewed me via Skype for the ESA’s Ecotone blog. Read and hear it here.

Video: Bebbo and Kito were featured in one of Jim Parks’ terrific Today’s Green Minute episodes. See the video! Learn more about it.

About Neil Wagner

Neil Wagner's What on Earth? comic strip uses humor to discuss global warming.

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