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How sea level rise affects birds in coastal forests

When saltwater inundates coastal forests as sea levels rise, it kills salt-sensitive trees, leaving "ghost forests" of bare snags behind. A new study from North Carolina State University explores how changes in vegetation affect coastal bird species.  Over the next century, a projected rise in sea levels will lead to chronic inundation and saltwater exposure in coastal forests around the world. When saltwater kills standing trees, forests are replaced by more salt-tolerant shrubs and grasses, which shifts vegetation closer to the ground and creates habitat for birds that prefer the understory rather than the forest canopy.  Read more...

 

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