Mountain plants face extinction
Scientists believe that climate change and increasing average temperatures are causing wild mountain flowers to move to higher altitudes. A long-term study of plants in the Italian Alps suggests that some have climbed 1400ft in the last 48 years, in response to a 1.5 degC rise in temperature.
All 52 separate plant species studied were found to have migrated upwards – by an average of 80ft per decade. Specialist scientists from the European Native Seed Conservation Network fear that 800 European plant species face extinction – with mountain flowers most at risk as they climb in search of cooler temperatures. Plants involved include the edelweiss, Alpine clover and yellow coltsfoot.