Pinpointing and preventing imminent extinctions

Ricketts, T., Dinerstein, E., Boucher, T. M., Brooks, T., Butchart, S., Hoffman, M., Lamoreux , J., Morrrison, J., Parr, M., Pilgrim, J., Rodrigues, A., Sechrest, W., Wallace, G., Berlin, K., Bielby, J., Burgess, N., Church, D., Cox, N., Knox, D., Loucks, C., Luck, G., Master, L., Moore, R., Naidoo R., Ridgley, R., Schatz, S., Shire, G.,Strand, H., Wettengel, W., Wikramanayake, E.
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Volume / Issue102(51)
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Tagsbiodiversity, conservation, protected area, threatened species
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AbstractSlowing rates of global biodiversity loss requires preventing species extinctions. Here we pinpoint centers of imminent extinction, where highly threatened species are confined to single sites. Within five globally assessed taxa (i.e., mammals, birds, selected reptiles, amphibians, and conifers), we find 794 such species, three times the number recorded as having gone extinct since 1500. These species occur in 595 sites, concentrated in tropical forests, on islands, and in mountainous areas. Their taxonomic and geographical distribution differs significantly from that of historical extinctions, indicating an expansion of the current extinction episode beyond sensitive species and places toward the planet's most biodiverse mainland regions. Only one-third of the sites are legally protected, and most are surrounded by intense human development. These sites represent clear opportunities for urgent conservation action to prevent species loss.
Created: 12/14/2017 10:30 AM (ET)
Modified: 12/14/2017 10:30 AM (ET)
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