Due to global warming, nightingales will have shorter wings, which will stop the migration of these birds. This is stated in a research by scientists from the University of Madrid on the website of the American Ornithological Society.
The nightingale is one of the most famous birds on Earth – it can produce more than 1 thousand different sounds, and its habitat is in many parts of Europe and Asia.
Over the past 100 years, the number of nightingales has decreased by 90%, mainly due to drought and anthropological impact on nature. Global warming also negatively affects birds, scientists say. Nightingales living in Europe spend the whole winter in Africa – for this, they have to travel huge distances twice a year.
Despite this, the average length of the wings of nightingales relative to the size of their bodies over the past 20 years has decreased. A group of ornithologists led by Dr. Carolina Remach believes that the reduction in the size of wings in birds, including nightingales, is due to the fact that the possible period of their reproduction becomes shorter. Because of this, they have to reduce the size of the clutches, which affects the size of the chicks that hatch from these eggs. Subsequently, the size of the wings of such birds decreases, since they do not have time to grow to the size required by nightingales.
The possible breeding season for birds becomes shorter due to an increase in average summer temperature. In conditions of a short breeding period, birds that do not spend a large amount of time on migration become the most successful, the study says.
Therefore, nightingales, like most birds, gradually evolutionarily reduce the size of their wings. However, despite this, their migration route remains the same. If nightingales do not change the length of their movements, in the future they can finally die out, scientists say.