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Massachusetts study: Climate change threatens birds

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LINCOLN, Mass. (AP) - A new report warns that more than 40 percent of the most common breeding species of birds in Massachusetts are considered "highly vulnerable" to climate change.

The Mass Audubon State of the Birds report released this week says many of the 143 species of birds in the study could decline further in number in the next 30 to 50 years, while some species could disappear entirely. Another 15 percent of the birds looked at in the study are considered "likely vulnerable."

The state's official bird, the black-capped chickadee, is among the 61 species considered "highly vulnerable" and could disappear from eastern Massachusetts.

Salt-marsh nesting and coastal nesting species, including piping plovers and roseate terns, are in particular danger because of greater erosion from storms of greater strength and frequency.

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