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Nine o’clock horror: Climate change causes shape shifting animals

Cockatoo, parrot, Australia.

A postmodern coal-powered Cockatoo is larger, meaner and nastier than any bird photographed in the paleolithic.      | Photo by Photoholgic on Unsplash

It’s a new horror to scare the kiddies:

Animals ‘shape-shifting’ as climate warms: study

Paris: Some animals are “shape-shifting” and have developed bigger tails, beaks and ears to regulate their body temperatures as the planet warms, according to a new study.

The Australian parrot, for example, had shown an average 4-10 per cent increase in the size of its bill since 1871 and the authors said this positively correlated with the summer temperature each year.

For one, do bird-bills cool birds? For two, how many parrot bills were measured in 1871 in Australia and do we think we would know if their bills got 10% bigger? For three, there is no “Australian parrot”, there are 56 different species. And fourthly, even if they had got bigger, and we could measure that, which we probably can’t, how do we know it’s not due to “something else” that changed in the last 150 years, like all the orchards, crops, trees and other things we planted? According to some botanists, there are more foreign plants in Australian than native ones. Maybe that matters?

Though not, apparently, when there is an ARC Grant for climate scares.

Gang Gang, parrot, bird.

A Gang Gang parrot suffering from a deficiency of carbon credits.             | Photo by Steve Franklin

Never ever before in Australia have parrot beaks changed by 4% in 150 years!

Researchers say the damnedest things, things that don’t even make sense:

Climate change is heaping “a whole lot of pressure” on animals, said Sara Ryding of Deakin University in Australia, who led the study, in a press release. “It’s high time we recognised that animals also have to adapt to these changes, but this is occurring over a far shorter timescale than would have occurred through most of evolutionary time,” she said.

We know this is unprecedented, yeah,  because back in 2,456,000 BC we know what the size of parrot beaks were in Australia, and how they changed by 2,455,850 BC?  Indeed, for every 150 year period going back to the beginning-of-parrots, 59 million years ago, we have a representative sample of fossilized beaks. That’s 393,000 consecutive sample periods for 56 species spread over 7 million square kilometers.

It takes a lot of data to know that this has never happened before.

Looks like the real danger in modern Australia is that the nation is sinking under the weight of 2 billion fossilized beaks. Either that or the nation is being crushed by incompetent, poorly trained experts in the bloated carcass of Australia’s academic sector.

 

9.8 out of 10 based on 93 ratings

129 comments to Nine o’clock horror: Climate change causes shape shifting animals

  • #
    David+Wojick

    The COP26 silly season is here!

    Laugh til it hurts.

    331

    • #
      Broadie

      David
      You would be laughing with the other side of your face if one of those beaks had %4 more grip on your finger through a cage!

      My experience with the modern scientist suggests to me they did not bother to standardize their calipers or they did not check the new calipers the WWF gifted them.

      130

      • #
        clarence.t

        Norwegian Blue grew one so it could get off it perk, muscle on up to those cage bars, and chew its way out.

        It really was pining for the Fjords

        40

      • #
        Ted1

        It’s the Saffron Thistles, silly!

        They came from South America. So the next logical development is that Australian parrots’ beaks will become the same as South American parrots’ beaks.

        This is just a transition.

        50

        • #
          Ted1

          Seriously. One of our local parrots is the Red Rumped Grass Parrot. 12 years ago we retired from farming into town. In town there are still a lot of birds. Recently I saw a flock of maybe 100 on local lawns that were new to me. They were a predominantly blue colour. The light was dull.

          I saw some again and had a video camera with me, so videoed them. The light again was dull, but studying the video they were in fact the red rumped parrots in a bluer colour. Last week I saw on our lawn half a dozen of the original green colour, and I have no doubt that the flock I saw were just that. A bluer strain of the red rumped parrot, all 100 of them. Maybe they flew in from a different region. I’d never seen them before.

          Seriously too, last year was a “great” year for saffron thistles. There would be a lot of seed on the ground.

          91

          • #
            Annie

            We regularly see a group of crimson rosellas pecking around our driveway. One of the group is coloured more like an eastern rosella.

            60

            • #
              robert rosicka

              I looked up “Rosellas” earlier this year because we had some very drab examples along with some very colourful ones and it seems there is a wide range of colours.

              20

              • #
                Hanrahan

                Raises a Q: Are individual flocks that have been isolated for centuries thus changing a little and becoming “novel” in each locality now mobile partly forced by habitat destruction and enabled by waterholes [property dams] connecting each, once isolated, habitat?

                Man and their introduced environment would have infinitely more effect on evolution than any small temperature change.

                40

              • #
                Hivemind

                “now mobile partly forced by habitat destruction and enabled by waterholes”

                No, they’ve always had wings and flew wherever they wanted. They’re not like fish that were stuck in one pond until a flood released them to new places.

                50

              • #

                Juvenile plumage is highly variable

                13

              • #
                clarence.t

                Beautiful plumage 🙂

                30

              • #
                Hanrahan

                Hivemind, birds don’t have long range tanks.

                10

    • #
      StephenP

      You could just as well say that human shapes have shifted in the past 70 years, much larger and more obese, augmented of course by cosmetic surgery.

      40

  • #
    David+Wojick

    Seriously, the clerk at the fossilized beak store said they had never seen anything like the beak I found in my yard. And they have been in business for ever so long. This climate stuff has got to be bad for the animals and this proves it.

    Do I get the grant now?

    371

    • #
      Deano

      No grant for you David. My exhaustive studies find that increasing funding for climate protection increases earth temperatures. The facts don’t lie.

      20

      • #
        Lucky

        Furthermore, increased ‘funding’ for climate change appears to decrease temperatures in past years, something to do with quantum tachyons.

        00

  • #
    bobby b

    Global warming is being caused by the growth of parrot beaks! The numbers confirm this.

    380

    • #
      Greg

      Hope they made sure they measured juvenile parrots,some of our parrots live for sixty years or more.so the older parrots may have been hatched in the sixties!

      40

    • #
      peter

      bobby,
      It used to be Pinocchio whose nose would grow when he told lies. Now it’s the beaks of parrots that grow with the telling of climate lies.

      p.s. Sara Ryding of Deakin University was on ABC Radio today, interviewed about this, err “research”. The ABC journo was drooling over the idea that parrot beaks would grow with climate change (more irrefutable evidence) but Ms Ryding gave ambiguous answers to many of her questions. “This could be happening”, “may be possible”, “I haven’t studied that” etc. Ms Ryding did give away that this work was important for her PhD. So, it’s more than an ARC grant involved here. The publicity from this, err “research”, could help her get her PhD and progress her career in academia. Now that’s more important than the truth, isn’t folks?

      60

  • #

    I’m going off-topic here, but I’d like to put something forward concerning YouTube which has nver happened to me before. I was watching a short (about 15 minutes) clip of Guardian journalist George Monbiot. I put up two replies criticising him, one with Dr Roy Spencer’s views on global warming – natural or manmade, and another with a link to Met office rainfall, temperature and sunshine data. Both have been deleted, as has a comment by another person who asks on the website why he’s been deleted. I tried to reply to this person, but instead got an invitation to sign in to YouTube via Google, giving my email and password, and if didn’t have one, to create an account.
    My comments were not abusive. and this has never happened to me before. Also, YouTube has deleted all of the material I usually watch – mostly music.
    Has this happened to anyone else – and what’s going on?

    261

    • #
      Plain Jane

      I am surprised you have not run into censorship earlier than this. Since the Plandemic started so much is being deleted off the net. You can get banned off youtube for all sorts of infringements even just comments. So much is deleted, or wont play with sound. Or disappear off your computer. Anything I really want to refer back to on certain subjects I try to save in hard copy because so much goes. I cut and pasted 50+ pages of adverse events of peoples personal experience of “you know what” from many FB groups, those groups now all disappeared, because I wanted to witness that it happens. So much suffering and death and so little of it making it to VAERS etc. Anyone can a have a copy if they want, just ask. Saving the wrong stuff in the Cloud could really do in your social credit score.

      280

      • #
        Carbon500

        Thank you for your comments. Clearly Google is not willing to encourage informed debate on ‘climate change’ – yet another example of nedia bias, an absolutely disgraceful state of affairs.

        190

      • #

        the problem with seeing the truth Jane is that “once you have seen it you cannot unsee it”

        30

  • #
    Travis T. Jones

    Those birds are just pining for the fjords … there the cold will prevent bigger bills …

    Monty Python: https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2hwqnp

    Science, 97%.

    100

  • #
    Mike+Jonas

    “Cane toads in the Northern Territory and Western Australia have evolved “very very rapidly” to hop in a straight line and cover up to six times more ground than distant cousins back in Queensland, scientists say.
    [..] To move at that rate, toads have to behave in very strange ways – ways that no other frog has before.
    [..] This is evolution through space rather than time.
    It’s quite different to the sorts of things (Charles) Darwin talked about.
    Cane toads are the best example in the world of this new evolutionary process.”

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-10-09/cane-toad-evolution-advance-genetic-research-rick-
    shine/5799008

    It can’t be global warming that causes the rapid evolution in cane toads, because the Queensland toads aren’t doing the same.

    I think, as Jo says, those parrots may be evolving because of the introduction of foreign plants. There’s a correlation with them too. They eat wooden window frames too, and there are a lot more of those than there used to be.

    200

    • #
      Hanrahan

      I think, as Jo says, those parrots may be evolving because of the introduction of foreign plants.

      I mentioned parrots eating sea almonds in #22. I think the nuts, like coconuts, float around on the tides so would always have been here but the black cocky hasn’t, I never knew them as a boy. They are native to the inland but the story is that they came to the coast during a drought in the ’70s, settled on a golf course, liked it and stayed.

      So the nut is new to the bird.

      110

    • #
      Earl

      So Dr Who got it wrong. It is not Time And Relative Dimensions In Space (TARDIS) but Toads And Relative Dementia In Space.

      70

  • #
    sophocles

    It seems most likely to be a diplomat — they’re not at all scientifically trained — who came up with that piece of junk.
    Although the attribution is dubious. Animals grow smaller as temperature rises.

    Evolution says that animals in warming climes shrink in size and those in cooling/colder climbs grow in size. It’s the surface area versus volume problem.

    Smaller animals hold less heat than large(er) animals. In hotter climes, larger animals overheat because their surface area is not large enough to shed surplus heat easily for an increased size.

    The larger animals like the polar bears (largest bears on Earth) hold more heat and with their large mass (volume) to suface area ratio hold their heat better than smaller animals do. Their
    Surface Area to Volume ratio is better for their size and they are best suited for where they live …

    Larger eating apparatus is more a food thing. But that too is limited: muscles still have to “handle the tools.” Doubling size quadruples weight.

    141

    • #
      David+Wojick

      Dinosaurs were very large in a warm world, were they not?

      141

      • #

        Seems to be true, but often they also had cooling elements (Steganosaurus, Not only weapons or Dilophosaurus dilophosaurus) walked trough water etc.

        20

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        There were lots of very small dinosaurs also, indeed it would seem most dinosaurs were small but their remains didn’t get fossilised except in volcanic regions of China/Mongolia.
        The “warming” then was a combination of not very much near the equator but more in the polar regions (no ice cap but seasonal snow at times), and it averaged out, so large dinosaurs could find a local climate they liked e.g. the titanosaurs (Argentinosaurus, Patagotitan etc.) in Patagonia whereas ‘smaller’ types (Amazonsaurus, Armagasaurus) were found in Brazil. (Oops! Alamosaurus in Texas shoots me down).

        The late Jurassic was not much warmer than current (2℃) despite CO2 around 2700 p.p.m. Also there are now claims that the last 10 million years of the Cretaceous were quite a deal cooler.

        40

    • #

      Sophicles, I love evolutionary just so stories.

      This is about increasing surface area (and SA:V) by adding heat sinks.

      15

      • #

        Let’s talk about heat flows from the surface area of beaks?

        I mean… how much heat will a bird lose through a hard shell that has no circulation? Can these birds sweat through their beaks?

        What exactly is the evaporative power of a dry beak? And would a white bird absorb more heat with a larger black beak than it can lose though the extra surface area of “beak-sweat”?

        The mind boggles!

        20

    • #
      Chris

      Do elephants with their big happy heat dissipating ears know this ? Polar bears are a subspecies of brown bears. They have black skin and their coat hairs are not white but transparent like cellophane, this allows them to absorb heat from the sun. They are built to with stand the frozen waters of the Arctic seas. Arctic foxes are a fraction of the size of polar bears also have black skin, but they don’t swim.

      Body size is confined by the parameters of genetics and access to protein . Large herbivores digest dead gut bacteria as the major part of their protein requirements.

      Can a change of diet change beak size ? Here in Perth we are losing our Carnaby’s cockatoos due to loss of habitat. Their diet is very restrictive, they mostly eat Marri gumnuts. However they have discovered Macadamias mostly in domestic gardens, and in a couple of hours can completely trash a tree. It takes two bricks to crack a macadamia, they crack through a nut like a human can tackle a peanut. Are their beaks stronger, or is this just part of natural variation.?

      50

      • #
        Binny Pegler

        Did English Longbow men ‘evolve’ thicker forearms?
        Larger stronger beaks, could just be a case of more work cracking larger stronger nuts.

        20

  • #

    If birds have to much “kernel” heat, they open a “thermic window” spreading their countour plumes completely to regulate their temperature. Or They turn the body to get wind from backside blowing under the plumes, or opne their beak, or all at once.

    110

  • #
    John F Hultquist

    ” . . . how do we know it’s not due to “something else” that changed in the last 150 years, like all the orchards, crops, trees and other things we planted?”

    Or AC/DC. Are not loud sounds inducive to change?

    A serious scientist would introduce all the ‘something elses” that have been suggested and explain why such were not related, or had not been considered. [See Richard P. Feynman for elaboration.]

    160

    • #

      A serious scientist would mesure the effect on temperature with shorter or longer beak or what ever they believe may cool down a birds temperature.
      In general parrot beaks are used for climbing and eating, a way the beak shortens by abrasion.
      There are a lot of reasons for longer beaks, not enough abrasion for different reasons, not enough vitamine A, or by defect or illness, wrong diet.

      90

    • #
      Ross

      Yep, I started listening to AC/DC in the 1970’s and grew 15 cm in a couple of years. 🙂

      90

    • #
      Clyde Spencer

      The actual research paper does, notably, remark, “One complication of studies that examine morphological change over long time frames is that the causes of change have many potential explanatory variables. It is therefore not surprising that temperature-based explanations of changes might be considered secondary to other factors.” Yet, they emphasize the role of temperature. They are basically saying that the bills of birds may change by up to 10% for an ambient temperature change of less than 5% Celsius degrees.

      However, their work is sloppy. It appears that they are correlating average global temperature changes with animals for specific and different regions that have temperature changes different from the global average.

      They are talking about ridiculously low r-squared values in the range of 0.005 to 0.01, without mentioning what the uncertainty ranges are for the correlation coefficient(r). An r-squared value of 0.005 means that only one-half percent of the variance in the bird bills can be explained by their chosen covariate. This is hand waving!

      30

      • #
        John F Hultquist

        ” … only one-half percent of the variance in the bird bills can be explained by their chosen covariate ”

        Wow! Am I glad that I didn’t read that with a sip of red wine in my mouth. My monitor is dirty enough.

        30

  • #
    TdeF

    All this has been caused by a tiny (don’t tell me it’s big) alleged +1.5C (how did they measure the Southern Hemisphere) increase in Global Temperature (an amazingly silly, made up measure) in 150 years (if you start at the coldest point, the end of the Little Ice Age) and find what you are looking for (confirmation bias).

    It’s the triumph of confirmation bias. Something will have changed, you just have to find the evidence and when you do, you know the culprit. Global Warming.

    I would challenge anyone to tell me the temperature now without a computer, phone, thermometer and get it right to 1.5C. And if you cannot, how can it possibly affect your life? And how can it possibly change physiology?

    The second proposition is that 1.5C is so devasting that animals have to adapt. Who actually believes that? No one. It’s all just rent seeking third rate would be scientists in the Flannery Fashion. And the silly season before COP26 in Glasgow where thousands of rich opportunists will book out every limousine, every luxury flight and hotel and restaurant to claim that the planet is dying and it’s everyone else’s fault. Plus the world needs carbon taxes, lots of carbon taxes.

    180

    • #
      TdeF

      And in Glasgow once again, the climate communists will demand and an immediate end to the two terror weapons, Fossil Fuel and Farts. I hope that, like Copenhagen, they freeze. 1.5C will not save them.

      140

    • #
      Gary+Simpson

      Yes, strange how so-called global warming has not affected human physiology, only parrots. You would think all things being equal, all animals would be equally affected by any warming wouldn’t you?
      By the way, I have had parrots feeding in my garden daily for the last 41 years and get up quite close, especially when they sit on your outstretched arms to get at the seed. I can honestly say I have definitely not noticed any extra beakiness.

      60

      • #
        Alexy Scherbakoff

        There have been changes in human physiology. How do you explain the proliferation of bikinis, otherwise?

        40

        • #
          Gary+Simpson

          Nice one, Alexy.

          10

          • #
            Alexy Scherbakoff

            The reality is that warming periods in history are due to the morality of women and has nothing to do with CO2. There is a clear co-relation.
            In the Minoan period, women wore skimpy clothes and jumped over bulls naked.
            The Roman period- we know how decadent Romans were. When the Empire collapsed it became cold.
            Renaissance and medieval warm period- obvious.
            Victorian morality and cold periods.
            The flappers and the 1930s-hot stuff.
            The 1970s and the rise of feminism- cool times.
            The rise of the ‘thong’ -increased temperatures.
            Temperatures have plateaued somewhat these days with the rise of enlarged people with double G bras.

            30

        • #
          Ronin

          The pic of knickers on a clotheline , from huge 19th century bloomers to g-strings proves the climate is heating up. LOL

          10

  • #
    Harves

    “In future, children will not know what small-beaked birds were.”

    200

  • #
    PeterS

    Given most people get their information from the MSM, and the MSM is blasting this nonsense everywhere, most people will believe this BS. Now does everyone see how it works? It’s just another nail in the coffin of the truth on CAGW. The body in the coffin is the truth and the lies being perpetrated outside of the coffin continue to infect people just like in a pandemic.

    80

  • #
    Sambar

    Thank goodness for this report. I had noticed that over the last 70 something years that my nose had changed shape, my earlobes are longer than photos from my teens and my teeth appear to be slightly longer, I always thought that it was the ageing process but now I can blame global warming.

    250

    • #
      Hanrahan

      Hair that used to grow on my head now grows in my nose and ears. GW?

      170

      • #
        Steve of Cornubia

        Men’s hair migrates through the head to reappear out of nose and ears, whereas muscle mass is similarly absorbed before reappearing as belly mass. I was also alarmed to realise that the old saying, “Everything gets harder as you age.” isn’t true.

        Women, OTOH, have their own surprises to look forward to. As they broach fifty years, with boobs surrendering to gravity and a mysterious enlargement of the arse bone going on, with fewer and fewer admiring glances from young men to complain about, God looks at these sad women and thinks, “What can I give her for her fiftieth birthday? I know, a moustache!”

        [Going a bit off topic here… -Jo]

        10

  • #
    Peter Fitzroy

    Allen’s Rule is what the original (and obviously unread by this blog) peer reviewed paper uses to demonstrate the change, and the relationship with temperature.

    021

    • #
      TimiBoy

      Lots of coulds and mights and “somes” in the article, but I couldn’t find a link to the research.

      130

    • #
      clarence.t

      Would be interesting to see how big the parrots’ beaks were during the previous 9000+ of the last 10,000 years, when it was significantly warmer than now. !

      Must have been huge !!

      80

    • #
      clarence.t

      And of course, the warmest period in Australia was around the late 1800s and early 1900s,

      So did the beaks shrink as the climate cooled to the 1960s?

      90

      • #

        Parrot beaks may align better with BOM adjustments than raw recordings.

        Or as I said, Parrot beaks may align with something else entirely and any resemblance to BOM data before or after mangulation is purely coincidental.

        50

    • #
      David Maddison

      I think most people are familiar with Allen’s Rule Peter. It simply states a relationship between body surface area to volume ration and ambient temperature for homeothermic animals. It applies to humans as well. In cold climates people who have evolved there tend to be short and rotund, in hot climates people are tall and skinny.

      90

    • #
      el+gordo

      Parrot beaks are probably getting bigger because of diet and not global warming. Looking at dwarfism in humans.

      ‘Perhaps the major contribution made by the Science paper is its analysis of a group of genes known as the fatty acid desaturatase (FADS) gene cluster, and how this could modulate dietary related selection pressures.

      ‘Where the diet is poor, the FADS gene cluster is shown to select for small stature. This mechanism could be of value in explaining the small stature of some populations (particularly in rainforests and on small islands), as well as other small-bodied individuals in some environments.’ (The Conversation)

      40

  • #
    R.B.

    Maxima need to be so much greater, occasionally, than they were to severely affect competition to breed.

    Heaton quotes from The Sydney Gazette of November 29, 1826: “The heat and hot wind of Saturday last excelled all that we ever experienced in the colony. On board the Volage man-of-war (a naval vessel), in the shade, the thermometer was 41C, and on the shore it was, in some parts of the town, 38C, and in others 40C. “To traverse the streets was truly dreadful, the dust rose in thick columns, and the northwest wind, from which quarter our hot winds invariably proceed, was assisted in its heat by the surrounding country being all on fire, so that those who were compelled to travel felt themselves encircled with lambent flames. Sydney was more like the mouth of Vesuvius than anything else.”

    And more from https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/blogs/miranda-devine/aussies-have-weathered-natures-extremes-before/news-story/af5b0bb9a32e2300dd93865815da9f60

    Plenty of 50+ days that are ignored. Maybe higher measurements than would have been recorded with a modern instrument (at least not going to pick up 10s blasts of heat) but I can’t see it making much difference to parrots when it’s 5°C above the 99 percentile for the year.

    110

    • #
      beowulf

      Presumably the parrots whose beaks are allegedly growing now are also descended from those not killed by the excessive heat recorded at Rose Hill, Sydney Town in Feb 1791 during the 1790-91 El Nino:

      “An immense flight of bats driven before the wind, covered all the trees around the settlement, whence they every moment dropped dead or in a dying state, unable to endure longer the burning state of the atmosphere. Nor did the peroquettes [parrots], though tropical birds, bear it better. The ground was strewn with them in the same condition as the bats.

      That excerpt is taken from the book “Watkin Tench – 1788” edited by none other than everyone’s favourite climate alarmist FLIM FLAM, but that was before he was a climate expert, so he can be forgiven his indiscretion at that time. As RB says, there is nothing new about excessive heat in Australia.

      40

  • #
  • #
    Beertruk

    ‘…poorly trained experts in the bloated carcass of Australia’s academic sector.’

    I concur.

    180

  • #

    Shape-shifting: changing animal morphologiesas a response to climatic warming

    Many animal appendages, such as avian beaks and mammalian ears, can beused to dissipate excess body heat. Allen’s rule, wherein animals in warmerclimates have larger appendages to facilitate more efficient heat exchange, reflectsthis. Wefind that there is widespread evidence of‘shape-shifting’(changes in ap-pendage size) in endotherms in response to climate change and its associated cli-matic warming. We re-examine studies ofmorphological change over time within athermoregulatory context,finding evidence that temperature can be a strongpredictor of morphological change independently of,or combined with, other envi-ronmental changes. Last, we discuss how Allen’s rule, the degree of temperaturechange, and other ecological factors facilitate morphological change and makepredictions about what animalswill show shape-shifting.

    Or, as reference out of the linked review:
    Climate-related spatial and temporal variation in bill morphology over the past century in Australian parrots (2015)

    Allen’s rule posits that the appendages of endothermic organisms will be larger in warmer climates to allow for dumping of heat loads. Given a link between appendage size and climate, we tested the prediction that climate change has driven the evolution of larger bills in birds, resulting in measurable changes over the recent past.

    Better have a look at the originals.

    30

  • #
    Penguinite

    I recall the learned nutritional scientists declaring that Japanese males had increased in size, post ww2, due to greater consumption of red meat. Could it be that parrot beaks have increased in size due to larger nuts to crack? Didn’t Darwin discover that one species of birds on the Galapagos Islands had developed a beak with a slight kink to the left to assist with flipping stones and pebbles to uncover potential food sources? Climate change crap!

    120

  • #
    Dean Wild

    There are definitely more gallah’s – lining up for grants.

    130

  • #
    Robber

    Well, I’m sure I’m different to my great grandparents, and living a much easier life. Do I give thanks to Gaia?

    70

  • #
    Hanrahan

    Maybe the black cockatoo has grown bigger beaks so they can eat sea-almonds.

    These trees grow in the sand and salty air near the beach. The nuts have a small tasty kernel inside the toughest case, so tough that I know of no one bothering to open them even with our tools. The black cocky loves them and bights off the branches and then break open the nuts on the ground. A fearsome beak no dog or cat would attack.

    https://www.martinwillisphotographs.com.au/products/red-tailed-black-cockatoo-eating-sea-almond-nut

    Maybe the temp. also causes smaller headed snakes in the tropics. Others say it is evolution – the smaller headed snakes can’t swallow big, poisonous cane toads.

    60

  • #
    Neville

    I don’t know anything about parrot beaks etc but I do know that MORE Humans die from moderate cold than from extreme cold or from moderate heat deaths or from extreme heat.
    Here’s the graph of a number of countries around the world ( including Australia) and amazing that this country selection overwhelmingly shows that moderate cold is the biggest killer.
    This is from the 2015 Lancet study of 73 million deaths.
    So just another tick in the box for a slightly warmer world.
    Bigger ears or larger bird beaks don’t worry me at all and I suspect this is just more fantasy than fact.

    https://els-jbs-prod-cdn.jbs.elsevierhealth.com/cms/attachment/fc9e67f9-7a3a-4bb1-9871-c479ca96ad25/gr2_lrg.jpg

    60

  • #
    David Maddison

    Have the beaks really changed in size or have they been “homogenised” with all the small beaks deleted from the dataset?

    Just to look at parrots, the first on their list:

    There are 56 species of Australian parrots.

    Here is the original paper with the “research”.

    https://www.cell.com/trends/ecology-evolution/fulltext/S0169-5347(21)00197-X

    It appears to me that of 56 species of parrot, they have only looked at 6. It appears of that small sample only 4 are positive to the question:

    “Does shape shifting occur (i.e., do appendages change in response to climate change?)”

    And that references a 2015 paper.

    And since when has “shape shifting” been a scientifically acceptable phrase outside of “Space 1999” and “Star Trek” and similar science fiction genres as well as various ancient folklore?

    Even if the claim of increased beak size were true it could be for a variety of reasons.

    For example, there were fewer introduced predators like cats in 1871. Today, the cats might only eat the smaller ones and the bigger, older, smarter ones survive.

    There are many possibilities even assuming the claims were true.

    It’s surprising and alarming that the paper passed peer review.

    It shows how dumbed down our “academic” institutions have become.

    When I was a graduate student, my professor wouldn’t have even allowed me to submit such a paper for publication in that state.

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    el+gordo

    Before WW2 the people of Japan lived mostly on rice and vegetables, with a bit of fish now and then. Since the middle of last century a more varied diet has seen a noticeable growth in their size.

    Adaptation is possible over decadal time scales, but we are all aware that Tokyo’s urban heat island didn’t make people taller.

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    Kalm Keith

    Confrontation.
    Despite confrontation of the dishonesty inherent in the Human Origin CO2 and death by incineration due to associated Global Warming, the story of Global Warming continues at full blast.

    It’s use as a control mechanism for the world’s population is firmly entrenched.

    Why then would anyone believe that the authorities are “truthful” in their assessment of Kovid 19. They got away with the CAGW enslavement and taxing rort and now are moving to the next phase of Kontrol.

    With the core of Australia’s social and economic activity on ice we have suffered enormously:

    Broken dreams.
    Broken families.
    Broken businesses.
    Broken democracy.
    Broken trust.
    Broken future.

    Australia’s once brilliant postal system is now just barely functioning, Parliament is not sitting and “elections have been “delayed” because, you know, Kovid19. The national education system is in lockdown and the nation’s children may never recover from these last two years.

    Australia’s latest joke.?

    Online learning.

    And somewhere here in this insayne horror is a printing press running twenty four hours a day to print the cash needed to offset the Kovid19 supplements.

    Gone to the dogs.

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    Neville

    BTW here’s the link to the 2015 Lancet study. See FIG 2.
    But who would’ve guessed that a warmer world is good for us? SARC.
    But I can’t be sure about the increase in the size of our noses or ears or …..

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(14)62114-0/fulltext

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    Saighdear

    Oh its ‘right enough’, you know: we used to dock the sheeps’ tails to avoid fly-strike. we used to do this, we used to do that, until the ( heck, it beats me, – what you call them) people / buggurs told us to stop feeding anthelmintics, using Dips, and the like to keep our pastures & livestock clean. Now the public is advised to watch for Ticks as they happily (?) GLEEFULLY frolick in our fields and hills which they so craved to do. Consequently and coincidentally with the demise of our Agric Colleges Advisory services (good, free advice, too) and the ascent of Ershbowk, no one needs a Formal education and REAL Qualification anymore. and so animals get left to run around with Shallocks and long tails. Animal Welfare really has gone to the dogs. I’m more of a Machine and Crop person : no Blood n Gore, but rubber ring on tail of young lambies never seemed to cause them stress. ( I never liked the idea of an axe or sharp knife ).
    So POLITICAL Climate change certainly has affected tail growth, anad in some areas, even Male Dongle growth & development, Horns left to grow again, etc ….. Why did we ever START these practices :huh, better gonnae nae gang doon thae road o’ fit thae dae tae weemin.

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    David Maddison

    A friend’s young daughter once came home crying because a visitor had come to the school and taught scary stories about “climate change”.

    Using unscientific terms like “shape-shifting” is designed to evoke fear of “monsters” in the young or vulnerable and comes from cultural references to shape-shifting monsters from folklore and science fiction.

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      rowingboat

      My youngest son when in Year 4 began asking lots of questions about climate change. He could see “fear in the eyes” of his fellow students during lesson time and was clearly nervous himself. I could alleviate many of his concerns given my background but the clincher and what was really very funny… later that year we visited Kakadu and our guide mentioned on our Yellow Waters cruise “you see, we the Kakadu People have known about climate change for a very long time, long before politicians discovered it even exists”. We all laughed so much, it was great!

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    David Maddison

    The ability for animals to adapt to changing circumstances in short amounts of time was first document by Charles Darwin. Examples are the change in availability of different food sources or different predators.

    The fact that the authors didn’t even consider these as possibilities, even assuming their claims are true, is concerning.

    I know academia has been dumbed down but not to be even familiar with “On the Origin of Species”?

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    Neville

    So why has the Human population increased so much over the last 200+ years or about 6.8 billion more people today than in 1800?
    And why so rapid and why /how could life expectancy + wealth increase so much as well?
    From below 40 then and yet today about 73.
    Certainly the climate must have been an important factor.
    And why do we require so few farmers etc to grow our food today and urban living percentage is increasing all the time.
    And why does anyone listen to the Biden donkey when he lectures us about the so called looming EXISTENTIAL threat to Humans on our planet?
    Gotta marvel at the BS and fra-d that nearly all govts accept today when all the DATA and evidence tells us they must be wrong.

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    Annie

    I love your last paragraph Jo! That really had me laughing. Around here the sulphur-crested thugs are already wreaking their damage, along with the ghastly row they make. I found my beautiful little (planted only a year ago) Magnolia Stellata, just covered with flowers, had been vandalised. They rip the tops off trees just for the fun of it. They certainly don’t need bigger beaks!
    If beaks survive and become fossilised eventually, how come we are not sinking under the weight of them? Indeed, there are hundreds of the thugs flying around here; no evidence of past beak sizes!

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    Bruce

    A long time ago, my late father chipped me for declaring someone to be a very nasty person.

    Hence the old saying:

    “Never ascribe to malice, that which is clearly Incompetence”.

    Fair enough. It is, after some thought, a nicely double-edged number.

    Since those Halcyon days, I have observed enough “incompetence” to persuade me to hypothesize that the corollary to that little bit of folk wisdom as also applicable in an increasing number of cases.

    Then, there is the option, as in these blighted times, to embrace the power of “AND”.

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    Lawrie

    The madness is not with the author of this rubbish but with the folks at ARC who funded it. Consider how much better off we would all be if there were no grants and researchers had to use their own funds or to seek those funds from someone who might benefit from the results. Taxpayer funds should never be used unless it can be proved that the research will benefit the nation and it’s citizens.

    We have discussed this before I know but where is the grant funded research that seeks to disprove the hypothesis that CO2 causes dangerous warming?

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    Mal

    Give an” expert: grant money and he will tell you anything you want to hear.
    Facts and truth are long gone
    This is a war now with the green left who are using climate change as a tool for their own agendas
    The first casualty in a war is always the truth as propaganda takes over.

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    Thirdly, and even if they had got bigger, and we could measure that, how do we know it’s not due to “something else” that changed in the last 150 years, like all the orchards, crops, trees and other things we planted?

    this is the crux of my criticism of the paper. They used a variety of birds and, though it would be difficult (impossible?) to get enough data (in this case enough species with enough samples), they need to find a way to correct for other anthropogenic factors. The only realistic way to do this is to compare similar species which have different exposure to human caused environmental changes, or populations of the same species with different exposure. The gang gangs are a good example. There are populations that live in rural and urban areas around Canberra and have been for the study period. There are other populations e.g in the upper snowy with almost no contact with human impacts – though there will be some gene flow between the regions.

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    Ross

    Yep, classic research grant scam. Research director ” Our funding period is about to end, quick we need to publish some results”. Reply from assistant tech officer ” I do have that thing about the bills growth etc”. Research Director – ” Yep. that’ll do, quick, write up a press release and I’ll send it to the Uni media director, hopefully she can get it on the Sunday night news on &”.

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      Mal

      Bills growth??
      Sounds like my electricity bills
      Can I get a research Grant for that
      I might get one for a correlation between bitcoin mining and power usage

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    William

    Worst case scenario, they are right and climate change is leading this. Ok, so the birds are adapting and evolving, just as birds, plants and mammals have always done. Goodness knows the average person is taller, heavier, healthier and stronger than they were in 1871 – is this cause for alarm?

    Seriously, too much grant money available for desperate attempts to try and confirm biases.

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    Strop

    4%? That’s nothing. Pinocchio, who works at the IPCC, has grown his beak 4,000,000% in much less than 150 years.

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    David Maddison

    This paper is important for the sole reason that it further demonstrates that any “scientific” research done under the auspices of “climate change research” is of poor quality at best and a massive waste of taxpayer money.

    It shouldn’t even be called scientific research. It is taxpayer funded political research to satisfy the political requirement to demonstrate supposed anthropogenic global warming.

    President Eisenhower warned of the dangers of taxpayer funded research.

    In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

    Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

    The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present

    and is gravely to be regarded. Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientifictechnological elite.

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    Bill Hall

    I assume they are measuring against a largo representative sample set of 1871 parrot specimens ?
    Is it also possible that natural desiccation of the 1871 specimens have shrunk them slightly – by say ~4% ?
    Very curious indeed.

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    Epicurious

    Was chatting to a mate yesterday about this article of which I knew nothing, so I’m glad to see it here. He believed every word and I could see that anything I would say would be ignored. Funny how people who burn lots of fossil fuels can be so green.

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    Speedy

    Nice one Jo. I see you speak fluent sarcasm. They deserve it.

    Cheers,

    Speedy

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    Grogery

    Gladys Berejiklian’s beak seems to be getting larger too.

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      Mal

      C’mon
      Freedom day is coming , ha ha what a joke!
      Still won’t have anyone else in your home but double vacced people might be allowed to go to Bunnings
      CHO is a total tool
      465 people die in australia everyday
      Yet they go paranoid over 3 or 4 deaths with underlying conditions
      Why doesn’t baralarro talk about these and give his condolences to all the families that he and the health beauracrats are stuffing up

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        Ross

        Is it possible that all the state and federal CHO’s are tools too? August last year Brett Sutton (..sorry Professor) announced that there would never again be 300 COVID cases per day on ” his watch”. Guess what happened this week in Victoria?

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      Ronin

      “Gladys Berejiklian’s beak seems to be getting larger too.”

      That’s caused by the ‘Pinnochio’ effect.

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    Mal

    I’ve noticed that no of pigs with their snoughts in the public trough has grown exponentially and snoughts are getting much bigger

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    RoHa

    I lover parrots in the springtime. They are good fun. Such cheerful birds. The last time I saw parrots, their hearts were young and gay. I hope we’ll always have parrots.

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    Philip

    Makes one wonder how animals survived over the dramatic changes in climate over time.

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    Ruairi

    The latest for climate-change speak,
    Is the parrot, a shape-shifting freak,
    For this tropical bird,
    Is more than absurd,
    That warming enlarges its beak.

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    CHRIS

    Shape-shifting…reminds me of various SF movies etc, such as Odo on Star Trek’s “Deep Space Nine”. Nice to see that the CC alarmists are that desperate that they have to try and disprove Darwinism.

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    Leo Morgan

    Australia, as a land of droughts and flooding rains has experienced the changing beak-size phenomenon throughout all it’s evolutionary history.

    Bird-beak changing is an ongoing part of the ecosystem.
    Olivia Judson wrote a brilliant article on the fluctuations of finch beaks in the Galapagos Islands on a decadal basis in an article for the New York Times. Sadly, pay-walled.
    https://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/07/22/a-natural-selection/
    Read it if you can, or her book, do yourself a favour.

    Here’s the reason: when there’s a drought, seeds tend to be small and hard-shelled, and when there’s abundant water they are larger and have softer shells- and birds whose beaks are adapted to the current circumstances tend to have more surviving offspring than their competitors.
    Recessive genes function as a suite of adaption tools during changing conditions, and fluctuating bird-beak sizes are a natural part of this. Floods and droughts change beak sizes, and this has been part of the Australian ecosystem for eons. All this is obvious to those who understand natural selection.

    Which makes this a ‘nothing’ headline. Similar headlines would be “Climate change causes glaciers to calve”, “Climate change causes Polar Bears to Swim” or “Climate Change Causes the Sun to Rise in the Morning”.
    The ill-educated often have a naively uniformitarian understanding of nature, and so attribute to Climate Change a large number of natural phenomena that will occur regardless of the presence or absence of human influences on the Climate. Normal things they just don’t know about, so it must be due to our climate sins. It isn’t.

    If they’d measured from the time of the Federation drought, would they have found the exact opposite result?

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