Working lands play a key role in protecting biodiversity

Diversifying working lands -- including farmland, rangeland and forests -- may be key to preserving biodiversity in the face of climate change, says a new review article. These changes could extend the habitat of critters like bats, but also much larger creatures like bears, elk and other wildlife, outside the boundaries of protected areas, while creating more sustainable, and potentially more productive, working lands.
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Pupil’s brain recognizes the perfect teacher

Human and avian youngsters learn behaviors by imitating adults. But learners are selective in who they copy, and scientists don't understand how they choose the right teacher. Young male zebra finches must learn to copy the song of an adult male to mate, but juveniles won't imitate songs played through a loudspeaker or sung by other species of birds. New findings show how the juvenile birds identify the right teacher.
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Getting to the root of long-term tree swallow declines

Aerial insectivores -- birds that hunt for insect prey on the wing -- are declining across North America. Conserving these vulnerable species requires a good understanding of the factors impacting them at every stage of life. Two new studies take a deep dive into the demographic factors behind declining populations of tree swallows and show that although specifics may vary between locations, action is needed to address environmental changes affecting these birds across their geographic range.
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