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Marine extinctions revisited


del Monte-Luna, P and Lluch-Belda, D and Serviere-Zaragoza, E and Carmona, R and Reyes-Bonilla, H and Aurioles-Gamboa, D and Castro-Aguirre, JL and del Proo, SAG and Trujillo-Millan, O and Brook, BW, Marine extinctions revisited, Fish and Fisheries, 8, (2) pp. 107-122. ISSN 1467-2960 (2007) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1467-2679.2007.00240.x


In recent years, more than 130 extinctions have been estimated to have occurred in the marine realm. Here we review this body of evidence and show that this figure may actually be overestimated by as much as 50%. We argue that previous estimates have not fully taken into account critical uncertainties such as naturally variable geographical distributions, and have misinterpreted documentary evidence. However, current evidence indicates that some sharks, rays and reef-associated species, although not necessarily geographically restricted, are particularly vulnerable to anthropogenic impacts and now occur in very low numbers. Overestimating extinctions is of concern because it could reduce confidence in the credibility of the ‘extinct’ category in threatened species lists and, ultimately, be used to question the integrity of conservation and management policies. We suggest that when integrating future checklists of marine extinct species, there needs to be a more rigorous use of the terminology of extinction, and participation by specialists in each of the particular taxonomic groups involved.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:biodiversity loss, extirpation, global change, habitat loss, overexploitation
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Environmental management
Research Field:Conservation and biodiversity
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Brook, BW (Professor Barry Brook)
ID Code:116307
Year Published:2007
Web of Science® Times Cited:33
Deposited By:Biological Sciences
Deposited On:2017-05-04
Last Modified:2017-08-29

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