Wildlife Wednesdays: Baird's Sandpiper | weatherology°
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By: Meteorologist Megan Mulford
Updated: Feb 25th 2019

Wildlife Wednesdays: Baird's Sandpiper

The good news for this little birds is that the Baird's sandpipers are not likely to become extinct anytime soon and are on the lower end of the endangered species list, but changes in climate can lead to a decrease in population. The challenge posed by climate change for these birds comes in the form of phenology and synchronicity. Phenology is the study of timing of natural events in relation to weather and climate, which has become very complex. Synchronicity is the simultaneous of events that appear to be related, but there is no connection. Changes in phenology could be a positive sign as species are adapting to different climate conditions. This means migrating earlier, flowering sooner, or producing babies earlier in the spring to coincide with the food supplies, which are also changing with the seasons. 

There is also a negative side to it, some species are struggling to adapt quickly enough to the changing climate. Warming temperatures continue to be a problem in the Arctic, which is causing shore birds such as the Baird's sandpiper to breed earlier in the season. This means more chicks are being born before the food supply is abundant, such as insects and worms. Studies show that chicks born outside of "peak abundance" grow much more slowly and are less likely to survive into adulthood. This has also occurred with other bird species in the Netherlands where chicks are born too early and there is a limited abundance of food. 


Baird's sandpiper
Warming temps causes for chicks to be born earlier, outside of the prime feeding time.