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Posted Wed Sep 3 2008: from Seattle Post-Intelligencer:
Population decline causing inbreeding among spotted owls, study says
Declines in populations of the endangered northern spotted owl are leading to inbreeding and a resulting lack of genetic diversity needed for survival, making the birds more prone to disease and other problems, a report by an Oregon State University scientist concludes. The problem, a "population bottleneck," likely will make recovery even harder, said Susan Haig, a wildlife ecologist with the U.S. Geological Survey's Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center at OSU. "Previous recovery plans were reporting the birds were doing OK. They're not," Haig said. She conducted the largest genetic study ever on endangered birds by taking blood samples from owls throughout the West.
[Read more stories about: bird collapse]

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