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Extinction debt and windows of conservation opportunity in the Brazilian Amazon.

Wearn, Oliver R ; Reuman, Daniel C ; Ewers, Robert M Wearn, Oliver R (correspondence author) ; Wearn, Oliver R (record owner)

Science (New York, N.Y.), July 13, 2012, Vol.337(6091), pp.228-232 [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    Extinction debt and windows of conservation opportunity in the Brazilian Amazon.
  • Author: Wearn, Oliver R ; Reuman, Daniel C ; Ewers, Robert M
  • Wearn, Oliver R (correspondence author) ; Wearn, Oliver R (record owner)
  • Subjects: Amphibians ; Animals ; Birds ; Brazil ; Conservation of Natural Resources ; Ecosystem ; Extinction, Biological ; Mammals ; Monte Carlo Method ; Time Factors ; Trees ; Vertebrates
  • Is Part Of: Science (New York, N.Y.), July 13, 2012, Vol.337(6091), pp.228-232
  • Description: Predicting, and potentially preventing, extinction is a central goal of conservation biology. Wearn et al. (p. 228; see the Perspective by Rangel ) describe a mathematical approach for predicting the time lags in extinction following habitat loss. The model was applied to the highly biodiverse Brazilian Amazon region, and used to reconstruct the spatial and temporal patterns of extinction and the accumulation of extinction debt from 1970 through to the present, and to extrapolate to 2050 under four deforestation scenarios. The Amazon basin sits at a critical point: Few species have been driven extinct to date, but an extinction debt is rapidly accumulating, which could lead to an increasing rate of extinction in the next four decades. Predicting when future species extinctions will occur is necessary for directing conservation investments but has proved difficult. We developed a new method for predicting extinctions over time, accounting for the timing and magnitude of habitat loss. We...
  • Language: English
  • Identifier: E-ISSN: 1095-9203 ; DOI: 10.1126/science.1219013

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