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Puffins in Peril

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Photo: Josh More/Flickr
As tufted puffin populations take a deep dive, an effort surfaces to get the birds listed as endangered species.


It’s hard not to love the tufted puffin. Just a little bigger than a football and not altogether different in shape, this bird’s bright orange beak and mad scientist-like tufts make it a standout on cliffs above the Pacific. Unlike their tuxedo-wearing Atlantic cousins, tufted puffins wear all black, but these pelagic punks are having a rough time on our western coastline.


In just 30 years, tufted puffin populations in Washington, Oregon, and California have plummeted as much as 90 percent, thanks to habitat destruction, fishing practices, and troubles with invasive species. That’s why the Natural Resources Defense Council (which publishes OnEarth) filed a petition with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today, requesting that tufted puffins of the Lower 48 receive protections under the Endangered Species Act.


Read more: http://www.onearth.org/articles/2014/02/lets-save-our-tufted-puffins-before-its-too-late

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