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The Loss of Species: Mangrove Extinction Risk and Geographic Areas of Global Concern


Polidoro, B and Carpenter, K and Collins, L and Duke, N and Ellison, A and Ellison, JC and Farnsworth, E and Fernando, E and Kathiresan, K and Koedam, N and Livingstone, S and Miyagi, T and Moore, G and Nam, V and Ong, J and Primavera, J and Salmo, S and Sanciangco, J and Sukardjo, S and Wang, Y and Hong Yong, J, The Loss of Species: Mangrove Extinction Risk and Geographic Areas of Global Concern, PLoS ONE, 5, (4) EJ ISSN 1932-6203 (2010) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2010 Polidoro 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.

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DOI: doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0010095


Mangrove species are uniquely adapted to tropical and subtropical coasts, and although relatively low in number of species, mangrove forests provide at least US $1.6 billion each year in ecosystem services and support coastal livelihoods worldwide. Globally, mangrove areas are declining rapidly as they are cleared for coastal development and aquaculture and logged for timber and fuel production. Little is known about the effects of mangrove area loss on individual mangrove species and local or regional populations. To address this gap, species-specific information on global distribution, population status, life history traits, and major threats were compiled for each of the 70 known species of mangroves. Each species’ probability of extinction was assessed under the Categories and Criteria of the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Eleven of the 70 mangrove species (16%) are at elevated threat of extinction. Particular areas of geographical concern include the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of Central America, where as many as 40% of mangroves species present are threatened with extinction. Across the globe, mangrove species found primarily in the high intertidal and upstream estuarine zones, which often have specific freshwater requirements and patchy distributions, are the most threatened because they are often the first cleared for development of aquaculture and agriculture. The loss of mangrove species will have devastating economic and environmental consequences for coastal communities, especially in those areas with low mangrove diversity and high mangrove area or species loss. Several species at high risk of extinction may disappear well before the next decade if existing protective measures are not enforced.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Mangrove, coastal ecosystems, threats
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Environmental management
Research Field:Environmental management
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Coastal and estuarine systems and management
Objective Field:Coastal and estuarine systems and management not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Ellison, JC (Associate Professor Joanna Ellison)
ID Code:65322
Year Published:2010
Web of Science® Times Cited:666
Deposited By:Geography and Environmental Studies
Deposited On:2010-11-03
Last Modified:2011-03-28
Downloads:390 View Download Statistics

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