Will animals learn to adapt as climate change and human population increase forces them closer to each other?



  1. 0 Votes

    Yes but it will take many years, maybe millions even.

  2. 0 Votes

    Organism’s behaivior and distribution may change because of human activities, but widespread genetic adaptation can not keep pace with human activities, with a few exceptions.

    For example, some of the most compelling evidence for climate change has come from the study of horizontal mountain ecosystems. Take Mt. Kilimanjaro for example. At the bottom you have savanha, at the top you have alpine and subalpine environments. There are countless organisms that have evolved for specific niches in specific microclimates that exist only on the Mt. As the climate warms, over successive generations organisms that live at the bottom of the Mt. tend to move up, organisms that live in the middle move up to the top–their distribution changes, but not the genetic code of the organism itself by and large–but those at the very top, well, those are the first to die off, since they have no where to run to.  

    In any case the answer is “yes” organisms can “adapt” to survive human activities–but unfortunately these organisms are few and far between, and a huge hunk of biodiversity will vanish if mankind continues on its current trajectory. 

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