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Coyotes-Wolves-Cougars.blogspot.com

Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

400 Moose now call New York's Adirondack Mountains home.........Part of the fauna matrix found in New York State at the point of European colonization(circa AD1500), Moose, like Caribou were extirpated and fully gone from these parts by the Civil War (forest to farrmland conversion destroying ungulate habitat).........As populations in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont rebounded, Moose began recolonizing the Adirondacks in 1980............. "As this Winter of 2017-18 got under way, Adirondack's Moose population appeared to be in good physical condition with many calves seen accompanying females each year."..........While farther south than their cousins in northern New England, Adirondack Moose thus far are less stressed by ticks and parasites-- 23% mortality due to winter tick and other parasite debilitation.........Auto Collisions account for a stunning 55% of all Moose deaths in NY State..............While Black Bears and Eastern Coyotes will opportunistically kill Moose Calves(calves have no odor and Bears and Coyotes literally only those they stumble over),.............. "Trent University biologists in 2013 documented four definitive cases of eastern coyotes and (or) eastern coyote × eastern wolf hybrids killing moose ≥1.5 years old"............ "Predation by coyotes and coyote × wolf hybrids probably does not represent a threat to moose population viability in central Ontario(and/or the Adirondacks)"


view video of Adirondack moose by clicking on this link:

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/politics/albany/2018/02/19/moose-adirondacks-incredible-aerial-video-photos/349714002/&ct=ga&cd=CAEYACoTMzI1MjYxMjIzNDIzNjk1MTEzMTIaM2JiNTcwMGRiYTRlZTUyZDpjb206ZW46VVM&usg=AFQjCNEyaGdZrJKw-7nkmExgcunfSmNbHQ


Moose in the Adirondacks: Incredible aerial video, photos


 Feb. 19, 2018


The state Department of Environmental Conservation in February 2018 posted several photos of moose in the Adirondacks as part of a multi-year aerial project. (Photo: Department of Environmental Conservation)



















ALBANY - Do you know the Adirondacks has a healthy

 and growing moose population?

The state Department of Environmental Conservation
 2015 to track and study the movement of moose in
 the Adirondack Mountains.
The goal is to develop a moose-management plan
 for New York and boost their survival. The DEC
 estimates New York has about 400 moose, mainly
 living in the Adirondacks.

Photo: Department of Environmental
 Conservation









The DEC this month released new photos and a 
video of moose stomping through the snow-covered
 forest and encouraged those who visit the region to
 report any sightings.
"Aerial surveys are conducted only during the winter
 months with the use of helicopters," the DEC said.
"The moose tend to be clustered in areas with
 abundant food resources, and they are easy to
 spot from the air when there are no leaves on
 the hardwood trees and they are silhouetted 
against the snow."

Moose don't live forever.  How do they die in NY?
A summary of 100 known mortalities of moose, recorded between 2000 and 2014, is given at left.  These mortalities were "opportunistically" detected, typically animals found dead along roads or acting strangely in and around centers of human activity (which ultimately led to their death).

These data are useful for disease surveillance in that they identify sources of mortality in a populations -- such as brain worm (Parelaphostrongylus tenuis), starvation, and hyperthermia









The DEC started the project three years ago with
 the SUNY College of Environmental Science
 and Forestry and Cornell University's 
Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit.
The multi-year project is aimed at obtaining 
information on the status of New York's moose
 population, their health and the factors that
 affect their survival and reproductive rate.









The effort has included trying to capture the 
moose and fit them with GPS collars. The 
DEC did so with 12 moose three years ago; 
nine in 2016 and five more last year.
With the GPS system, the moose can be
 remotely tracked, and it can also help 
determine whether they are producing 
calves or having health problems.
"Researchers also have tracked collared 
moose to understand their diet selection 
and have been sampling vegetation 
across the Adirondack Park to assess 
the quantity and quality of available food 
sources," the DEC said.













While most of the New York moose are found
 in the Adirondack region, some have been
 found south in the Albany area, including in
 Rensselaer and Columbia counties.
In 2015, one bull moose was captured in 
Rensselaer County after it was
The DEC encourages people to provide
 any information about moose sightings 
by filling out a form on the DEC's website.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

"Wildfire is such a defining element of so many ecosystems around the world that it's impossible to imagine them – and their constituent creatures – without it"............"A remarkable share of ecological landscapes evolved under the regular influence of flame”............"Fire turns the kaleidoscope of habitat"............. "The post-burn environment favours some species, discourages others, which is why you want lots of patch burns so you have a good churn of habitat"............."Bigger mammals(e.g. Bison, Elk, Bears, Wolves, Coyotes, Bobcats, Lynx, Pumas) often escape fire because they're pretty good at galloping, loping, trotting, even plain sauntering away from flames"........... "The hair of mammals also provides a bit of a buffer against the extreme heat, especially longer and denser fur"........"They succumb to fire most likely when fire fronts are wide and fast-moving, fires are actively crowning, and thick ground smoke occurs"............."Smaller mammals such as rabbits and rodents may also run away ahead of the flame front, or retreat underground".......... "Ventilation is vital, though: mice have been found suffocated post-fire in burrows with only a single entrance"..........."Reptiles and amphibians may either flee fires or successfully endure them ensconced underground or within crevices, rotten logs and other cool, moist hidey-holes"................"Adult birds are pretty well set up to simply fly away from conflagrations, though eggs and chicks are vulnerable: surface or understory fires may destroy nests laid on the ground or in shrubs, while canopy broods go unaffected"......... "How significant the loss of a nest to fire is can depend on the species".........."Wild turkeys often don't re-nest if their brood is lost after a few weeks of incubation, whereas another upland game bird, the northern bobwhite, may re-nest several times a season"............"Roughly speaking, animals specially adapted to fire environments (pyrophytes), as well as generalist species, tend to be the short-term winners when the smoke clears, while those reliant on habitats or resources that are temporarily destroyed are the "losers".........."Woodland caribou lose out on winter lichen reserves for a time when their boreal woods burn; white-tailed deer and moose, meanwhile, do well on account of all the abundant post-fire shrubbery".......... "Beyond the short-term aftermath of burns, it's important to emphasise just how many animals depend on habitats maintained directly by fire"


Wildfire and wild things

Ethan Shaw; Feb 20. 2018

2017 LOS PADRES NATIONAL FOREST FIRE IN LOS ANGELES--Image: Forest Service, USDA-





The aftermath of Southern California's Thomas Fire – at roughly 282,000 acres scorched in December 2017, the biggest in modern Golden State history – has revealed much devastation of human life and property, most recently due to flooding and mudslides provoked by heavy rain on the burn-scape. There have also, however, been a few feel-good nuggets on the post-fire wildlife front: black bears and puma cubs with burned paws and ash-coated barn owls taken into rehabilitation, and the happy news that a California condor pair's chick managed to survive (with singed wingtips) when flames swept through its nesting area in the Los Padres Sespe Condor Sanctuary, home to nearly half the state's free-flying condors.

Fire and critters have also lately been in the news courtesy of a fascinating study published late last year in The Journal of Ethnobiology investigating the so-called "firehawks" of Australia's tropical savannahs. Its authors delved into a phenomenon long known to Aboriginal peoples: raptors plucking flaming or smouldering sticks from bushfires and dropping them in nearby grass, thus sparking a new burn.
To some people who've never experienced one where they live, or where they love to recreate, a big burn can seem a disastrous aberration – and, ala Bambi, nothing but trouble for the creatures caught in its path. The intriguing case of the firehawks (which we'll explore a bit more later) suggests a more complicated story. Most of the world's ecosystems have evolved with fire of one kind or another, and animals have an instinctive (and opportunistic) relationship with it.

Cypress prairie at the Florida Panther National Wildife Refuge. Image: Josh O'Connor/USFWS





Let's have a look at some of what we know about a fire's impact on animals: the bad, the good and the grey areas in between.

Fire in ecosystems: An old story

First though, setting the stage. A remarkable share of ecological landscapes evolved under the regular influence of flame, though what sort of fire, and how frequent, and from what ignition source, vary considerably. Many Mediterranean-zone and semiarid grasslands, shrublands and woodlands burn chronically: from the fynbos of South Africa's Cape region and the eucalypt woods of southeastern Australia to the cerrado savannahs of central Brazil and the California chaparral. But many other plant communities that wouldn't seem terribly flammable at first glance – cold subalpine woods, northern taiga, temperate rainforest – do indeed burn, even if the intervals between fires are sometimes on the order of several centuries, even a millennium.
Lightning conspires with annual dry seasons or periodic droughts to spark wildfires, but we – human beings – are just as important ignition sources in many parts of the world. We've been intentionally starting fires for thousands of years: to improve hunting or herding opportunities, to clear land for agriculture and manage crops. The exact fire regime of a region depends on a whole suite of factors, but generally speaking a place that burns frequently tends to experience low-intensity fires – there's not time in between burns to build up a lot of fuel, basically – while countryside that tends to ignite once every few centuries will nourish bigger, fiercer fires.
An inferno raging through a forest or brushland may look apocalyptic, and some individual animals will perish in it, but such a blaze can also help maintain and rejuvenate the resources local wildlife depends on – and open up crucial opportunities for other species specially disposed to capitalise on the post-fire landscape.
But what about those real-time effects of the leaping flame and billowing smoke? What about the critters that perish, and those that don't?

Mammals

It's often surprising how few medium-sized and large animals appear to die in wildfires. In the mighty conflagrations that roared across Yellowstone National Park in 1988 (and changed wildfire philosophy and policy in the USA), known large-mammal deaths were in the low hundreds: 240 elk, nine bison, four mule deer, a pair of moose – most of them apparently felled by smoke inhalation. Reports of Yellowstone's big beasts running from the big crown fires were scarce; the main reaction was basically indifference. Several radio-collared grizzly bears hung around actively burning areas during the '88 Yellowstone fires, and more than a dozen grizzlies moved right into burned-over zones after the flames subsided. "Bison, elk, and other ungulates grazed and rested within sight of flames, often 100 metres or less from burning trees," noted a United States Forest Service report on the ecosystem impacts of wildland fires.
Bison freaking out (sarcasm!) as the 1988 Yellowstone fires burn. Image: US National Park Service




One basic reason why bigger mammals often escape a fiery death? Well, because they're pretty good at galloping, loping, trotting, even plain sauntering away from flames. The hair of mammals also provides a bit of a buffer against the extreme heat, especially longer and denser fur. This means they can sometimes get away with slipping right across a fire front. (That sort of doubling-back, for example, allowed several woylies – little kangaroo cousins – to remain in their home ranges during a moderate-to-high-intensity burn in a eucalypt forest in southwestern Australia.)
This past December, the manager of the free-roaming American-bison herd in South Dakota's Custer State Park noticed the bovids' shaggy coats seemed to offer some protection during a fierce and fast-moving grassfire: outer guard hairs were burned off, but the "underfleece" beneath provided a shielding layer.
That prairie blaze – which blew up from 4,000 to 35,000 acres on a single night due to winds exceeding 40mph – caused burns severe enough that a number of bison (as well as elk, deer and a feral burro) had to be put down. It goes to show that a swift wildfire can sometimes outpace or outflank even the large and the mobile: whether it's mustangs in the American West or elephants in South Africa, big mammals dosometimes fall victim to flame and smoke.
Elk in woods burned by the 1988 Yellowstone wildfires. Image: US National Park Service




"Large mammal mortality is most likely when fire fronts are wide and fast-moving, fires are actively crowning, and thick ground smoke occurs," the US Forest Service report explained
After the Jasper Fire of 2000 – the largest to impact the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming in modern times – researchers studying pumas in the range found one of their radio-collared cats, an adult female, dead in a mountain draw. They concluded that the puma, which had burned paws and singed whiskers but otherwise minimal external injuries, had asphyxiated, probably on a day when strong south winds had driven the fire front forward at some 15mph – fast enough, they reasoned, to trap the animal in the draw.
Smaller mammals such as rabbits and rodents may also run away ahead of the flame front, or retreat underground. Ventilation is vital, though: mice have been found suffocated post-fire in burrows with only a single entrance.
Some mammals are more vulnerable to fires than others. Koalas, for example, a bit ungainly on the ground and prone to shelter in the canopy, can get in trouble when a bushfire rages through their highly flammable (and fire-dependent) eucalypt woods. Fire can also hit woodrats hard, as those rodents hole up in aboveground nests of grass and other litter – super-combustible homes they're loathe to abandon even when flames start crackling.

Reptiles & amphibians

Like small mammals, reptiles and amphibians may either flee fires or successfully endure them ensconced underground or within crevices, rotten logs and other cool, moist hidey-holes. In 2001, wildfires in New Mexico burned the entire known range of the endangered Jemez Mountain salamander, yet the population survived due to the refuge offered by rock nooks and crannies. Timing's everything, though: snakes in the process of shedding their skin may be less adept at sheltering from a fire.

Birds

Adult birds are pretty well set up to simply fly away from conflagrations, though eggs and chicks are vulnerable: surface or understory fires may destroy nests laid on the ground or in shrubs, while canopy broods go unaffected. (How significant the loss of a nest to fire is can depend on the species: as the US Forest Service notes in its wildfire/ecosystem survey, wild turkeys often don't re-nest if their brood is lost after a few weeks of incubation, whereas another upland game bird, the northern bobwhite, may re-nest several times a season.) In many fire regimes, however, peak burning season occurs after peak nesting.
A black-backed woodpecker enjoys the bounty of a regenerating forest following the Pagami Creek Fire in northern Minnesota. Image: Rich Hoeg/Flickr



Flying birds, well equipped as they are to dodge flames, may – like those big mobile mammals – sometimes be overwhelmed. A 1999 fire in the South Florida Everglades didn't harm two large rookeries of wading birds – even as sawgrass marsh around them burned, the "tree islands" harbouring the rookeries were wet or moated enough to endure – but it did kill 50 white ibises that were likely trapped by heavy smoke while out foraging.
Now, what about those pyromaniacal Aussie raptors? Birds of prey in many parts of the world commonly hunt along and above the fire front, scavenging crispy leftovers and feasting on the small creatures driven ahead of the flames, as well as insects lofted high by the fire thermals. But recent research has investigated the possibility that certain Australian raptors intentionally spread flames to flush out (and fry) more snacks. A National Geographic article on the study quoted a passage from the 1964 life story of an indigenous man named Waipuldanya Phillip Roberts that helped inspire the investigation: "I have seen a hawk pick up a smouldering stick in its claws and drop it in a fresh patch of dry grass half a mile away, then wait with its mates for the mad exodus of scorched and frightened rodents and reptiles. When that area was burnt out, the process was repeated elsewhere."
The researchers delved into traditional knowledge and mythology on the subject and also documented contemporary observations bearing out the firehawk behaviour among three quintessential raptors of Australia's northern savannahs: the black kite, whistling kite and brown falcon. Not everyone's convinced the birds' spreading of fire is intentional – it's also been proposed they accidentally nab smoking sticks in their talons when making unsuccessful predatory strikes – but the research team is continuing its inquiry, and hopes to record the firehawks in action on film.

Invertebrates

It's difficult to summarise what we know about wildfire impacts on invertebrates. Many aboveground insects and arachnids likely perish during fires, although one study* showed both adult acridid grasshoppers and nymphs were quite capable of escaping a savannah fire in Côte d'Ivoire. In many cases, invertebrate numbers and diversity recover quickly in burned zones due to dispersal from neighbouring unburnt habitat (though a recent study on Florida tortoise beetles showed recolonisation can take a good while for some bugs).
Twenty-five years of regrowth following the 1988 "Summer of Fire" Yellowstone wildfires. Image: J Klinger/Flickr


Invertebrates that tunnel into the litter layer or soil probably hold up better in fires, though high-severity burns have been known to destroy even subsurface eggs of mites. (In that case, incidentally, mite populations in the burn area were initially lower than surrounding plots, but by a year and a half post-fire, the burn area supported substantially higher populations than elsewhere, a trend often seen for aboveground invertebrates as well.)
Certain kinds of insects, meanwhile, are actively attracted to fires. Charcoal beetles (Melanophila) sense the heat of wildfires as far as 130 kilometres away and "beeline" for them (if you will) to mate and lay eggs beneath the bark of fire-killed snags. Writing in Bay Nature about the 2013 Morgan Fire near San Francisco, Emily Moskal described firefighters' vivid experiences with hordes of these beetles:
o protect themselves against the darting insects, the firefighters wore bee veils. The beetles emerged from their mating stages in the burned or burning trees to swarm, rising with the smoke and sizzling crackle of extinguished embers. Firefighters recalled that everywhere skin was exposed, beetles scratched and prodded ... [Firefighter Dylan] Jorgensen described a feeling of relentless buzzing in his hair, firefighters "ripping their helmets off like feeling a bee in your shirt," and dancing and shaking to get the beetles off of them.
Other types of wood-boring beetles as well as horntails (or wood wasps) follow the scent of smoke to reproduce in burned forests. "Firebug" is a common shorthand for all of the insects for which wildfires are one big smoking magnet.

Indirectly dangerous 

Animals aren't just killed outright by voracious flames and choking smoke. There are also dangers only indirectly related to fire – which would include, for example, the predation inflicted upon those skittering mice and snakes and insects fleeing the fire front.

An endangered Key deer forages in an area burned the previous day in a prescribed fire. Image: Josh O'Connor/USFWS




Creatures retreating from fire face other risks, too. In one instance, a slew of Cape grass lizards were squashed on a gravel road they were crossing to escape a fynbos blaze.
What's more, injury from flames may hamper an animal's ability to obtain food or avoid predators. In early October of last year, a closely monitored male puma in Southern California's Verdugo Mountains turned up dead not long after a 7,000-plus-acre wildfire in the area. While the cause of his death was unclear – a necropsy ultimately ended up finding traces of rat poison in his system – a National Park Service spokesperson told LAist, "We've seen other cases of mountain lions surviving wildfires, and coming away with burned paws that make it difficult for them to hunt and survive."

Fire & wildlife habitat

The real-time deaths and miraculous escapes are the most superficially dramatic wildfire impacts on wildlife, but more significant in the long-term are the habitat changes resulting from burns. As firebugs demonstrate, these changes create opportunities for many animals.
"Fire turns the kaleidoscope of habitat. The post-burn environment favours some species, discourages others, which is why you want lots of patch burns so you have a good churn of habitat," Stephen Pyne, one of the foremost wildfire scholars around (and a former wildland firefighter) told me via email.
Amid the bountiful sunlight and released nutrients of a charred forest or shrubland, grazing animals may prosper; browsers may get their day when early-successional shrubs colonise burns and reign for a few decades. Woodpeckers and other cavity-nesting birds flock to the snags that stud a burned forest. The "case-hardening" by which flames toughen wood means that a fire-killed snag and the downed log it ultimately produces – apartment complex for all kinds of creepy-crawlies – may offer longer-lasting habitat than other deadwood.
A prescribed (or controlled) fire in eastern Oregon. Image: Bureau of Land Management Oregon/Flickr



Fire's impact on habitat varies from fire regime to fire regime, of course. A grass fire creeping across savannah or prairie preserves that ecosystem by killing invading trees and shrubs: many animals of the pre-fire landscape therefore reoccupy it in short order, if not immediately. A huge stand-replacement crown fire in taiga or subalpine forest, by contrast, removes its defining conifers and paves the way for fundamentally different plant communities – brushfields, deciduous woods – that will eventually, maybe a century later, transition back to conifer domination. More specialised animals found in the pre-fire old growth may not reoccupy the site until that happens, but in the meantime, a host of other species will stake their claim.
In the fire-dependent Cape fynbos of South Africa, nectar-eating sugarbirds and orange-breasted sunbirds lose local habitat to fire – it may take some eight years for their preferred nectar-bearing shrubs to reestablish themselves – while insectivorous species such as the Cape rockjumper may prosper on the heels of flame. In the grasslands of southeastern Arizona, cotton rats declined after a fire temporarily reduced the green vegetation they eat, while cotton mice and kangaroo rats increased in the area, likely because of plentiful seeds (their preferred nosh) generated by the forbs colonising the burn-scape.
Roughly speaking, animals specially adapted to fire environments ("pyrophytes"), as well as generalist species, tend to be the short-term "winners" when the smoke clears, while those reliant on habitats or resources that are temporarily destroyed are the "losers". Woodland caribou lose out on winter lichen reserves for a time when their boreal woods burn; white-tailed deer and moose, meanwhile, do well on account of all the abundant post-fire shrubbery.
Beyond the short-term aftermath of burns, it's important to emphasise just how many animals depend on habitats maintained directly by fire. The Kirtland's warbler is a classic North American example. The songbird – restricted to a small breeding range in Ontario, Michigan and Wisconsin, and wintering ground in the Bahamas – nests only in young stands of jack pine: a "serotinuous" tree bearing a large proportion of cones that open only when unsealed by fire. Historically, wildfires perpetuated both jack pine in general and the youthful, scrubby pinewoods the warblers needed; fire suppression has reduced warbler habitat, and prescribed burns (and selective timber harvest) are helping to restore it.

The evolving fire-scape

Part of the crazy complexity of fire ecology is the human element. We're fire animals like none other: our mastery of fire, right up there in our top two or three all-time breakthroughs, didn't just transform our ways of life – it also transformed ecosystems all around the world. Fire is an age-old force on Earth, one we learned to make and manage; for millennia, other organisms have evolved under the rhythms of anthropogenic burning.
Those rhythms, though, have changed considerably across time, as hunter-gatherer burning gave way in many areas to agricultural burning, and, in modern times, as intentional burning gave way to fire suppression. Again, it's complicated, but generally, policies of suppressing fires have built up fuel loads in many flame-adapted ecosystems to the point where they're prone to high-intensity, high-severity burns – as opposed to the low-grade fires that, erupting frequently, once maintained them.
In landscapes subject to institutional fire suppression and not, there's the even greater influence of climate change, which from the American Southwest to the Russian taiga seems to be promoting larger, fiercer and more frequent conflagrations. Climate change is such a planetary-scale, whole-earth-system phenomenon that it's an epic challenge to predict how specifically it'll influence local fire regimes, though more and longer-lasting droughts, higher annual temperatures, receding permafrost, and diminished and faster-melting snowpacks certainly seem to set the stage for more burning. Assessing how wildlife can adapt to an evolving new pattern of wildfire is just one part of the high-stakes puzzle climate change presents.



B;ACK BEAR AND CUB TRAVELING ALONG EDGE OF THE GREAT DISMAL SWAMP REFUGE FIRE
CREDIT-ROB WOOD/USFWS




Our burning behaviour and effects on global climate coincide, of course, with all the other ways we impact wildlife. California condors, for example, have dealt with wildfire in western North America for many millennia; countless nests must have gone up in flames. That's less of an issue when you've got lots of condors, but today, the potential loss of just one nestling – like the chick caught in the Thomas Fire – is a major cause for concern.
"If you have a species tied to a particular place, isolated in a refugia, it may suffer from a big burn that blasts over the site," Pyne said. "Apart from any immediate fatalities, the species won't have any place else to flee to until the original site recovers."
Hemming wildlife into small, isolated patches of habitat surrounded by human development or otherwise unfavourable landscapes makes animal populations more vulnerable to fires, as they may have less ability to seek refuge and food, and fewer source populations for recolonisation. In this way, fires may have contributed to the extinction of the heath hen of eastern North America (a bird dependent on fire to maintain its favoured open habitats) when they broke out in the last remaining stronghold of its hugely reduced range, the New England island of Martha's Vineyard.
Meanwhile, a nearly 50,000-acre wildfire last year in the Pinaleño Mountains of southeastern Arizona killed 217 of 252 known Mount Graham red squirrels, and destroyed many of the rodents' seed caches. Scientists are anxiously hoping enough squirrels survive this winter to give the endangered subspecies a fighting chance in the wild.
If your main takeaway from all of this is that it's tough to generalise about fire impacts on animals – well, you've got it. Flames burn up woodrat nests and yet refresh wildebeest pasture. They destroy the boreal owl's old-growth home while making a new snag-ridden one for some of its close kin. They serve up a smorgasbord for hunting kites and a nursery for charcoal beetles. They pay off for this puma with lots of wild room to roam while mortally threatening that puma living in a pocket refuge walled in by humanity. Wildfire is such a defining element of so many ecosystems around the world that it's impossible to imagine them – and their constituent creatures – without it.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Since there currently is no "green" fuel that does not despoil the environment in some way, I urge the Environmental Community to press both the so-called moralizing/self-rightous progressives and the narrow minded/refuse-to-acknowledge-science conservatives into doing something that can clean up the air without further environmental degradation..............Giant Windmills and Solar Panels when placed on farmland, woodland, Mountains, Desert, Chaparral and in the Ocean rip up greenspace and create new industrial zones in what is currently open space..............On top of that, the energy that flows from these new land disrupting technologies has to be run througn some type of grid,,,,,,,,,,,This further rips up the earth via the installation of electrical lines and pipes running thousands of miles to get the electricity to population centers................Those smug/self-congratulatory nimrods who boast about driving electric cars, claiming to be holier than thou "earth healers" conveniently forget that the source of their electricity is in fact either oil, gas or coal burning Co2 or newly destoyed wildlife habitat that now features hundreds of 300+ foot windmills and thousands of solar panels..........Instead of all the politically correct, moralizing and demonizing B.S. being fed to us from the "core 4" in Congress-----Schumer, Pelosi, McConnell and Ryan-----,our public servants should focus on the 38% of smog-forming emissions that come from consumer products...............That's right, 38% of smog-forming emissions come from our everyday use of Shampoo, Hairspray, Deodorant, Perfume, Air fresheners, Cleaning sprays, Laundry detergent, Disinfectant wipes, Hand sanitizer, Glue and Paint............While counterintuitive, a smaller 33% of smog-forming emissions come from gasoline and diesel burning, 15% from Industry and 14% from Upstream emissions from Power Plants.............Utilize less chemicals in our consumer products and we make an impact on reducing air pollution far greater than any non-binding International Paris Accord could ever hope for...........As we do that, our best and brightest minds can continue to work on a fuel to power up our cars that will not further destroy the biodiversity of our Planet

http://click.societyforscience-email.com/?qs=e55c9082c9e05859a475eb8e51181018074b0f9f9fa659d5d085de32f54ffa020cb453550142efa65bffe3d58a6c1aeec00ea683fffca38c




Household products make surprisingly large contributions to air pollution


Consumer products might be next target for air pollution cleanup

BY  Laurel Hamers,Feb 15, 2018





















AUSTIN, Texas — To reduce your impact on air quality, you might expect to trade in your gas-guzzling clunker of a car — but you can also unplug those air fresheners. 
In urban areas, emissions from consumer goods such as paint, cleaning supplies and personal care products now contribute as much to ozone and fine particulate matter in the atmosphere as do emissions from burning gasoline or diesel fuel.

The finding is largely a sign of success, study coauthor Brian McDonald said February 15 during a news conference at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Steps taken to clean up car exhaust over the past few decades have had a huge effect, and as a result, “the sources of air pollution are now becoming more diverse in cities,” said McDonald, a chemist at Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences in Boulder, C



“When you have a big mountain in front of you, it's difficult to know what lies behind it,” says Spyros Pandis, a chemical engineer at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh who wasn’t part of the study. Now, other sources of air pollution are becoming more visible.



 Everyday products like these emit a bouquet of volatile organic compounds that 

contribute to air pollution. A spritz of perfume or a spray of disinfectant has a small

 effect, but frequent use of these products by millions of people adds up to a big

 impact.

  • Shampoo
  • Hairspray
  • Deodorant
  • Perfume
  • Air fresheners
  • Cleaning sprays
  • Laundry detergent
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Glue
  • Paint















The new study, also published in the Feb. 16 Sciencefocused on volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, that are derived from petroleum. These are a diverse array of hundreds of chemicals that easily vaporize and make their way into the atmosphere. Some VOCs can be harmful when directly inhaled — molecules released by bleach and paint make people lightheaded, for example.

Beyond their immediate effects, VOCs react with other molecules in the air, such as oxygen and nitrogen oxides, to generate ozone as well as fine particulate matter. (Those nitrogen oxides come, in large part, from vehicle exhaust.) High levels of fine particulate matter, or soot, make it hard to breathe and contribute to chronic lung problems (SN: 9/30/17, p. 18). And while ozone high in the atmosphere helps shield earth from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation, at ground level, it mixes with fine particulates to form breath-choking smog. 
Over a period of six weeks, the researchers collected air samples in Pasadena, located in the notoriously smoggy Los Angeles valley. They also evaluated indoor air quality measurements made by other scientists. The team traced the molecules found in these air samples to their original sources using databases that show the specific volatile organic compounds released by specific products.


Do not let the SoCal Weather folks fool you,,,,,,,,,,This
is not a Marine-Layer covering Los Angeles--It is chemical
and Co2 created smog













Consumer products that emit VOCs have an outsized effect on air pollution, the team found. By mass, people use about 15 times more gasoline and diesel compared with products ranging from soaps, shampoos and deodorants to air fresheners, glues and cleaning sprays. And yet these everyday products were responsible for 38 percent of the VOC emissions, the researchers found, while gasoline and diesel emissions accounted for only 32 percent. Consumer products also contributed just as much as fuels to chemical reactions that lead to ozone and fine particulate matter. The emissions from consumer products also dwarfed those from the production of oil and gas, called upstream emissions



Regulations on VOCs vary by state, but most consumer products are regulated only for their potential contribution to ground-level ozone, not fine particulate matter. This study makes it clear that even though most volatile emissions from consumer products happen indoors, that air eventually gets vented outside, where it can contribute to larger-scale atmospheric pollution in multiple ways, McDonald said.

More work needs to be done to see whether other cities show the same pattern, the researchers add, as well as to figure out which kinds of VOCs might be particularly problematic. Because there are so many VOCs and they all react differently in the atmosphere, there’s still a lot to learn about which might be most likely to form fine particles and therefore be the best targets for reduction.

Part of the challenge with many these volatile-emitting products is that they’re specifically designed to evaporate as part of their job, says study coauthor Jessica Gilman, an atmospheric chemist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder. For some products, like paints, there are low-VOC formulations available. But finding replacements for key ingredients in other products can be hard. Picking unscented versions of personal care products when possible and using the minimum amount necessary can help reduce the impact on air quality.
Citations
B. McDonald et al. Volatile chemical products emerging as largest petrochemical source of urban organic emissionsScience. Vol. 359, February 16, 2018, p. 760. doi:10.1126/science.aaq0524.
Further Reading
L. Beil. Pollution killed 9 million people in 2015Science News, Vol. 192 No. 9, November 25, 2017, p. 5.
L. Beil. The list of diseases linked to air pollution is growingScience News. Vol. 192 No. 5, September 30, 2017, p. 18.