by University College London, March 3, 2019 in WUWT
Alien species are the main driver of recent extinctions in both animals and plants, according to a new study by UCL researchers.
They found that since 1500, alien species have been solely responsible for 126 extinctions, 13% of the total number studied.
Of 953 global extinctions, 300 happened in some part because of alien species, and of those 300, 42% had alien species alone listed as the cause of their demise.
The study, published today in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, used data from the 2017 IUCN Red List on the total numbers of species that are considered to have gone extinct globally since 1500.
In total, 261 out of 782 animal species (33.4%) and 39 out of 153 plant species (25.5%) listed aliens as one of their extinction drivers. In contrast, native species impacts were associated with only 2.7% of animal extinctions and 4.6% of plant extinctions.
by Prof. Chris D. Thomas, July 10, 2017 in TheConversation
Animals and plants are seemingly disappearing faster than at any time since the dinosaurs died out, 66m years ago. The death knell tolls for life on Earth. Rhinos will soon be gone unless we defend them, Mexico’s final few Vaquita porpoises are drowning in fishing nets, and in America, Franklin trees survive only in parks and gardens.
Yet the survivors are taking advantage of new opportunities created by humans. Many are spreading into new parts of the world, adapting to new conditions, and even evolving into new species … (…)
by University of Chicago Press Journals, August 30, 2017 in ScienceDaily
To date, about 1.5 million species have been formally described in the scientific literature, most of them insects. Proportionally, bacteria comprise less than 1% of all described species.
In a new paper published in The Quarterly Review of Biology (September 2017), researchers from the University of Arizona have estimated that there are roughly 2 billion living species on Earth, over a thousand times more than the current number of described species.