Friday, 22 September 2017

Size matters when it comes to extinction risk


By Helen BriggsBBC News
19 September 2017
The biggest and the smallest of the world's animals are most at risk of dying out, according to a new analysis.
Size matters when it comes to extinction risk, with vertebrates in the so-called "Goldilocks zone" - not too big and not too small - winning out, say scientists.
Action is needed to protect animals at both ends of the scale, they say.
Heavyweights are threatened mainly by hunting, while featherweights are losing out to pollution and logging.
"The largest vertebrates are mostly threatened by direct killing by humans," said a team led by Prof Bill Ripple of Oregon State University in Corvallis, US.
"Whereas the smallest species are more likely to have restricted geographic ranges - an important predictor of extinction risk - and be threatened by habitat degradation."


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