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Climate change may leave many mammals homeless

In some places, projected warming threatens the survival of more than one in three species

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4:12pm, May 14, 2012

Some 9 percent of mammal species throughout the Western Hemisphere could, within roughly a century, become climate refugees with no suitable homes, a new study finds. In some areas conditions will be far worse, with 39 to 50 percent of mammals unable to emigrate fast enough to find suitable ecosystems.

“If species can’t migrate spontaneously, they’re going to go extinct. That’s the bottom line,” says Nina Hewitt of York University in Toronto, a biogeographer who was not involved in the new analyses.

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