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 Post subject: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 6:34 pm 
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I am a German student currently working on an essay concerning the consequences of global warming on Africa.

Since I am still in need of information in which ways the current climate change is influencing or will influence specific plants, I believe that asking such a forum is among the best ways to get first-hand information. Of course I already thoroughly studied numerous reports and essays (among others the corresponding IPCC reports), however these do only examine the general vegetation and fauna.

I am aware of the fact that this is certainly an usual request, yet I would be grateful for a reply.

Note: I started a similar thread in the "animals" section. So if you have any information on this, too, you know where to head. :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 7:38 pm 
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Hi there :D

Welcome to the forums :wink: Interesting study, altough I can imagine it being quite difficult :? I cannot help you on this, but maybe PM Imberbe, he's quite a plant freak :P Just mentioning it, but it depends on whether one can stamp it as 'global warning' or just temprature tides going up and down throughout the ages.. Did you see the film of Al Gore so BTW? I have read somewhere on this forum that scientist expected that 30% of all insects will die within 50 years if the rise in climate temprature will continue in SA. No sure where to find the topic though..

I know this isn't actually helping you, just had so say it :twisted: Good luck :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2009 10:36 am 
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Dear Impeccablility

I am a Field Guide in the Letaba region of KNP.
It is most distressing that we have become so efficient in destroying the natural environment, that even our climate is now affected. It is amusing that with our intelligence, we have actually been the most stubborn of all living organisms. I find it shocking that we are completely exhausting all our natural resources (and of course losing beautiful large natural areas that will never exist again), with not much concern about it.
It is inspiring to see people making studies from it, hopefully with the intention of finding a miraculous solution.

We are seeing changes in the environment: E.g. (see some bird examples below),
- The mirgratory birds arrive back, only to find a shortage of food - because of late rains.
- Some birds keep their breeding plummage for a very long time (Eastern Paradise whydah)
- Some plant species have been flowering at really odd times of the year
I am sure there are many other examples of animals AND PLANTS. As far as I know, Colophospermum mopane is being looked at. The Mopane tree thrives is warm climates, perhaps to the detriment of other species. If you have not yet, it would be a good idea to look at that tree. I think it would also be interesting to know which species are most efficient at reducing carbon dioxide.

I hope you will receive more feedback about this. I will let you know if I or some of my more experiened colleagues notice other unusual things.

Saskia Taylor
Field Guide
Kruger National Park


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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2009 1:19 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Fascinating, Saskia! But rather sad. :(

I know that there is interesting work being done in the Eastern Cape where farmers are growing spekboom for carbon sequestration, and then sell the carbon credits. :D

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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 11:13 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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I saw the article I was talking about (global warming effect in Kruger) haning on the wall at the poaching displays outside at Lower-Sabie. Maybe you can contact Lower-Sabie and ask them to fax you a copy? Just a thought!

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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 11:53 pm 
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It goes much further than just a few species of plants or animals, it's all interconnected. That will be a hard study!
For example: the bees here in Europe are slashed, partially by two diseases.
Now that's nice when you're on a terrace drinking a fruitdrink, but almost all plants here rely on bees for pollination....
Including foodstocks like grain! Last year I could count the bees seen almost with my fingers and toes... And I'm not overdoing that statement!

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 Post subject: Re: Consequences of global warming on plants
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 12:00 am 
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Keep in mind that as average temperatures rise, species that thrive in warmer environments e.g. Colophospermum mopane, the Mopane tree, may become "invasive" as they expand their range further south (in the southern hemisphere) into areas where they are not historically found.

The bottom line being that temperate species (animals and plants) are likely to suffer the most from global warming, be it from the climate directly or the new suite of competitors that are better suited to the new environmental conditions.

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