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Latest Extinction Stories

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2010-03-31 11:07:40

The woolly mammoth died out suddenly and without a loss of genetic variation, all but ruling out climate change and inbreeding as possible causes of their extinction, according to a study published Tuesday in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. According to a March 30 article by Marlowe Hood of the AFP, "The culprit might have been disease, humans or a catastrophic weather event, but was almost certainly not climate change." Furthermore, the scientists, including Anders Angerbjorn of...

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2010-03-16 12:45:00

Species of butterflies, beetles and dragonflies are being wiped out across Europe due to destruction of their natural habitats, according to the updated European "Red List" of endangered species Tuesday. 435 butterfly species have been examined by scientists, who found that one in three species are dying out and 9 percent are already on the edge of extinction. "Most butterflies at risk are confined to southern Europe," Annabelle Cuttelod, coordinator of the European Red List at the...

2010-03-10 12:09:50

A study of extinction patterns of 25 large mammal species in India finds that improving existing protected areas, creating new areas, and interconnecting them will be necessary for many species to survive this century. The study, by a team of researchers from the United States and India, appears in the March 10 online edition of the British peer-reviewed journal, Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The team's analysis showed that forest cover and local human population densities are also key...

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2010-03-01 15:39:37

Challenges evidence that global warming was the cause Scientists broadly agree that global warming may threaten the survival of many plant and animal species; but global warming did not kill the Monteverde golden toad, an often cited example of climate-triggered extinction, says a new study. The toad vanished from Costa Rica's Pacific coastal-mountain cloud forest in the late 1980s, the apparent victim of a pathogen outbreak that has wiped out dozens of other amphibians in the Americas. Many...

6398ec20d125b71aaacafe15236eb5fd
2010-03-01 13:02:12

An asteroid strike may not only account for the demise of ocean and land life 65 million years ago, but the fireball's path and the resulting dust, darkness and toxic metal contamination may explain the geographic unevenness of extinctions and recovery, according to Penn State geoscientists. "Our results shed light on the causes of nannoplankton extinction, how productivity was restored, the factors that controlled the origination of new species, and, ultimately, how phytoplankton influenced...

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2010-02-03 10:05:04

Non-native species have adapted by adjusting the timing of seasonal activities such as flowering Invasive plants could become even more prevalent and destructive as climate change continues, according to a new analysis of data stretching back more than 150 years. Writing in the journal PLoS ONE, the Harvard University scientists who conducted the study say that non-native plants, and especially invasive species, appear to thrive during times of climate change because they're better able to...

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2010-02-02 09:37:21

Researchers from the University of Granada (UGR) have compared the disaster caused by the Aznalc³llar spillage in the Doñana National Park in Andalusia 11 years ago with the biggest species extinction known to date. What do these two disasters have in common? The scientists say that carrying out comparisons of this kind will make it possible to find out how ecosystems recover following mass extinctions. Until now, scientists used to study the fossil record in order...

beb05b376c87bd4e02bc46af897125e41
2010-01-22 08:18:46

A new scientific paper co-authored by a University of Adelaide researcher reports strong evidence that humans, not climate change, caused the demise of Australia's megafauna - giant marsupials, huge reptiles and flightless birds - at least 40,000 years ago. In a paper published today in the international journal Science, two Australian scientists claim that improved dating methods show that humans and megafauna only co-existed for a relatively short time after people inhabited Australia,...

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2009-12-20 10:00:00

Monkey species will become "Ëœincreasingly at risk of extinction' because of global warming, according to new research. It reveals that populations of monkeys and apes in Africa that depend largely on a diet of leaves may be wiped out by a rise in annual temperatures of two degrees Celsius. The study by researchers from Bournemouth University, Roehampton University and the University of Oxford suggests that the species most at risk are the already endangered gorillas and colobine...

59c5ea92b29880a7096a78f69d6c0de81
2009-12-19 09:19:38

If Earth is headed for a mass extinction like the previous five, in which more than 75 percent of all species were wiped out, then North American mammals are one-fifth to one-half the way there, according to a University of California, Berkeley, and Pennsylvania State University analysis. Many scientists warn that the perfect storm of global warming and environmental degradation - both the result of human activity - is leading to a sixth mass extinction equal to the "Big Five" that have...


Latest Extinction Reference Libraries

Waitoreke
2014-02-05 16:37:44

The Waitoreke is a cryptid from New Zealand described as being otter-like. Its name derived from “Wai” is a Maori word for water. The rest of the word has different translations, but the common one is “toreke,” which means to disappear. Together the name could translate into “disappears into water” or another translation is a “disappearing water specter.” The usual description is a small otter-like creature about the size of a cat. It has brownish short fur and short...

Red Rail, Aphanapteryx bonasia
2013-10-02 13:35:50

The Red Rail (Aphanapteryx bonasia) is an extinct and flightless rail. It was native to the Mascarene island of Mauritius, east of Madagascar within the Indian Ocean. It had a close relative on Rodrigues Island, the likewise extinct Rodrigues Rail, with which it’s sometimes considered congeneric. Its relationship with other rail isn’t clear. Rails frequently evolve flightlessness when adapting to isolated islands. It was slightly larger than a chicken and had reddish and hair-like...

Panthera leo spelaea
2012-11-16 15:34:04

Commonly known as the Eurasian cave lion or the European cave lion, Panthera leo spelaea is an extinct subspecies of lion. It is thought to have lived during the Pleistocene epoch, and may have lived in the Balkans in southeastern Europe until 2,000 years ago. The range of this cave lion would have included northwestern North America, Asia, and areas of Europe and would have extended from Germany, Spain, and Great Britain to the Yukon Territory. Its range also extended from Turkistan to...

Short-faced Bear, Arctodus simus
2012-04-27 19:45:45

The short-faced bear is an extinct genus of bears that was native to North America during the Pleistoscene era. Other common names include Arctodus and the bulldog bear. There are two subspecies of the short-faced bear, and one of them, Aroctodus simus, is thought to have been the largest terrestrial mammal on earth. Placed into a group of bears known as running bears or the tremarctine bears, this genus was found in Europe and the Americas. The earliest member of the tremarchtine group,...

American Lion, Panthera leo atrox or P. atrox
2012-04-26 06:05:05

The American lion (Panthera leo atrox or P. atrox) is also known as the North American lion, American cave lion, or Naegele’s giant jaguar. It is an extinct species that was native to North America and the northwestern parts of South America during the Pleistocene era. It lived up to eleven thousand years ago. During the last interglacial period in North America (the Sangamonian Stage), the American lion’s range included the Americas south of Alaska. The earliest fossils of these big cats...

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Word of the Day
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'