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How Can Coffee Plantations Be More Bird-Friendly?


Sipping a collective 400 million cups a day, most coffee-loving Americans are likely unaware of how their cherished brew impacts tropical bird populations in some of the world’s most critical biodiversity hotspots.

Fortunately, University of Utah biologist Çağan Şekercioğlu and his team of researchers are on it.

Their landmark 12-year study of 57,255 individually banded birds representing 265 species at 19 Costa Rican sites sheds new light on how tropical birds, a key indicator of ecosystem health, are faring across a patchwork of habitats in a changing agricultural countryside. The team compared bird populations on primarily open coffee farms (with small amounts of shade) with those in remaining forested areas.

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