The world's rediscovered species: back from the brink?

Scheffers, Brett R., Yong, Ding Li, Harris, J. Berton C., Giam, Xingli, and Sodhi, Navjot S. (2011) The world's rediscovered species: back from the brink? PLoS One, 6 (7). e22531. pp. 1-8.

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Abstract

Each year, numerous species thought to have disappeared are rediscovered. Yet, do these rediscoveries represent the return of viable populations or the delayed extinction of doomed species? We document the number, distribution and conservation status of rediscovered amphibian, bird, and mammal species globally. Over the past 122 years, at least 351 species have been rediscovered, most occurring in the tropics. These species, on average, were missing for 61 years before being rediscovered (range of 3-331 years). The number of rediscoveries per year increased over time and the majority of these rediscoveries represent first documentations since their original description. Most rediscovered species have restricted ranges and small populations, and 92% of amphibians, 86% of birds, and 86% of mammals are highly threatened, independent of how long they were missing or when they were rediscovered. Under the current trends of widespread habitat loss, particularly in the tropics, most rediscovered species remain on the brink of extinction.

Item ID: 35746
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1932-6203
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© 2011 Scheffers et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Funders: Osprey Packs Inc., Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund, Loke Wan Tho Memorial Foundation, University of Adelaide
Projects and Grants: R154000473112
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2014 16:47
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060299 Ecology not elsewhere classified @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0699 Other Biological Sciences > 069999 Biological Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960899 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity of Environments not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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