The discovery of a tropical butterfly on North Lantau last month is a sign that ecological zones are shifting as a result of global warming, according to the Environmental Association.
“It is normally found in areas deep within tropical regions like India and Indonesia,” Environmental Association chief secretary, Dr Yau Wing-kwong, wrote in a letter to the South China Morning Post.
But it is not a one-off.
Another tropical butterfly, the Prosotas nora, was first seen in Hong Kong in November 2015 and has now made the city a permanent home, Yau said, noting that it is now enjoying “a baby boom.”
He pointed out that climate studies have shown that for every degree of global warming, the isotherm, or line of average temperature, will move by more than 160km.
This discovery sends a strong signal, indicating that global warming is moving ecological species northwards, as isotherms … simultaneously move north.
Although much climate change evidence is derived from complex mathematical models and data, it is beginning to affect the ecological world on a much wider, quicker and bigger scale than ever before. This is a clear, strong message and warning that we all act together to combat global warming and climate change, before it is too late and irreversible.
The Environment Association is a privately-funded conservation promotion and education foundation.
Photo (top): Wikimedia