Rapid upslope shifts in New Guinean birds illustrate strong distribution

To: Denise Goodfellow <>
Subject: Rapid upslope shifts in New Guinean birds illustrate strong distributional responses of tropical montane species to global warming
From: brian fleming <>
Date: Sun, 23 Mar 2014 11:34:22 +1100
On 23/03/2014 5:11 AM, Denise Goodfellow wrote:
Beehler, Pratt and Zimmerman note that "in the last century ice covered larger areas on the Papuan 
high peaks; the icecap on Mount Trikora (Wilhelmina), New Guinea’s second-higest peak has 
disappeared since World War II" (1986:16).  This information, of course predates Jared 
Diamond’s study.  It may well be that changes in the use of elevation of montane birds is even 
greater than demonstrated in this study.  Does anyone know if any ornithological studies were carried 
out in these areas pre-war?

Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate
Vice-chair Wildlife Tourism Australia

In the mid 1960s the Melbourne University Mountaineering Club, of which we were members, contemplated a scientific trip to the PNG glaciers/snowfields.

June 2002 imagery on Google Earth shows Carstensz Pyramid Base Campin a valley between two small snow fields, at an altitude of about 4500m, totalling perhaps 4 sq km, about 5 km from an unidentified mine.

It appears that it is a tourist base camp rather than scientific. Publicity for a trekking company says:

"Carstensz Pyramid is on the island of New Guinea, the world’s third largest island, in the province of Papua (formerly Irian Jaya), a remote corner of Indonesia. This is the highest peak in the Australasian continent and often the most difficult to gain access to of the seven summits. The climb itself involves fifth class rock climbing on a beautiful limestone summit ridge to gain the 16,023 foot/4,884 meter summit. Carstensz Pyramid is the highest peak in the Surinam mountain range that transects the island and sits next to the glaciated Ngapulu Jaya.

Brian Fleming
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