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T H E A N N I H I L AT I O N

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O F N AT U R E Human Extinction of Birds and Mammals Gerardo Ceballos, Anne H. Ehrlich, and Paul R. Ehrlich


T H E A N N IHIL ATION OF N A TU R E Human Extinction of Birds and Mammals Gerardo Ceballos, Anne H. Ehrlich, and Paul R. Ehrlich

T

his book brings us face to face with the Earth’s sixth great mass extinction, revealing that this century is a time of darkness for the world’s birds and mammals. In The Annihilation of Nature,

three of today’s most distinguished conservationists tell the stories of the birds and mammals we have lost and those that are now on the road to extinction. These tragic tales, coupled with eightythree color photographs from the world’s leading nature photographers, display the beauty and biodiversity that humans are squandering.

Gerardo Ceballos, Anne H. Ehrlich, and Paul R. Ehrlich serve as witnesses in this trial of human neglect where the charge is the massive and escalating assault on living things. Nature is being annihilated, not only because of the human population explosion, but also as a result of massive commercial endeavors and public apathy. The Annihilation of Nature is a clarion call for engagement and action. GERARDO CEBALLOS, one of the world’s leading ecologists, is a professor at the Institute of Ecology at National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). He is the author of Mammals of Mexico and Diversity of Mexican Fauna. ANNE H. EHRLICH is a senior research scientist emeritus at Stanford University. She is the coauthor of Extinction: The Causes and Consequences of the Disappearance of Species and The Dominant Animal: Human Evolution and the Environment. PAUL R. EHRLICH is the Bing Professor of Population Studies and the president of the Center for Conservation Biology at Stanford University. Among his more than 40 books are The Population Bomb and Human Natures: Genes, Cultures, and the Human Prospect.


“The alarm must be amplified. Listen to our stories. Learn what’s happening, and demand change.” — from the Preface


2 N AT U R A L E X T I N C T I O N S

An extraordinary planetary event occurred on March 22, 1989, when an asteroid three times as wide as a football field just missed hitting Earth. The asteroid passed through the exact spot where Earth had been only a few hours before. But for that near miss, the planet would have felt an impact similar to exploding 1,000 to 2,500 1-megaton hydrogen bombs simultaneously. That movement made the difference between a brief evening news story and the immediate deaths of millions of people, not to mention enormous damage to both human infrastructure and biological diversity. The result would have been the most recent natural mass extinction episode. Much of the planet’s surface would have been, for a long while afterward, a wasteland. Life on Earth in other times has been less lucky. Paleontologists divide Earth’s history into periods marked by transitions that produced abrupt changes in the species composition of fossils. Thus the division between the Precambrian and Cambrian periods, 600 million years ago, is characterized by an abrupt shift from only microscopic marine organisms to the addition of many complex visible life-forms such as trilobites, now-extinct marine relatives of today’s insects and crabs. These transitions have been associated with natural disasters that caused catastrophic, widespread perturbations wherein major groups of plants and animals became extinct over a relatively short time, changing the course of evolution. These devastating events are called mass extinctions. The five largest mass extinction waves occurred during the past 500 million years; all unfolded rapidly

(in geological terms) from natural causes, such as extraordinarily extensive and prolonged volcanic activity inducing global climate cooling, or rapidly warming periods, or asteroid impacts. Yet the effects were not uniform; some large groups of related species were lost, while some others remained largely unaffected. Each time, however, the resulting catastrophic loss of global biodiversity required the Earth to wait millions of years to re-establish a similar abundance. The most recent mass extinction event was the Cretaceous–Tertiary transition (often called the K-T boundary), which occurred around 65 million years ago and wiped out almost all of the dinosaurs, which had previously dominated the planet. Within a few thousand years, an estimated 95 percent of all previously existing species disappeared, an extinction event of gigantic proportions. Of the dinosaurs, only the ancestors of the birds survived, a legacy that enchants us today. Debates about the K-T boundary mass extinction may never end, but it is generally attributed to the collision of our planet with a massive asteroid that hit the Yucatán Peninsula at the edge of the Gulf of Mexico. Watching the calm waves of the Gulf today, one would have a hard time imagining the brutal force of an ancient collision that vaporized all life at ground zero. The asteroid likely passed through the atmosphere in about 1 second, heating the air in front of it to several times the temperature of the sun. When it hit, the asteroid itself would have vaporized, launching an enormous fireball into space. Rock particles would have been flung thousands of miles into space. Gigan-


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tic shock waves would have reverberated through the bedrock and then returned toward the surface to send melted globs of rock partway to the moon. Some of what went up would have come back down, and returning debris would have rained down trillions of speeding meteors, setting myriad forest fires. These conflagrations would have covered huge areas of the continents and burned for weeks or months. Earthquakes and resultant landslides and tsunamis would have added to the devastation. Whether or not this description is accurate, all land animal species weighing more than 18 kilograms (40 pounds) became extinct, including all the dinosaurs except the birds. But a group of inconspicuous small animals at the time, the mammals, with their weird-looking, hair-covered bodies, pulled through. In time, over millions of years, the mammals became one of the most successful groups on Earth, diversifying into the thousands of species we know today. Of course, extinctions were occurring all the time between the mass extinction episodes. New species

The brown bear (called the grizzly in North America) is not in danger of global extinction at the present time. It once ranged from Mexico to Alaska and from northern Europe and Russia to North Africa, and is still found in parts of North America (where it can be abundant) and northern Eurasia. But the bear’s range has contracted greatly; its Russian population has been cmut in half in two decades, and many smaller populations are under assault from the usual culprits, in some places including hunting for paws and gall bladders. These cubs, like our own grandchildren, face a very uncertain future.


se ecosysthe most diver forests are s, animals, Tropical rain species of plant . Millions of own to tems on Earth of them unkn isms, most elous and microorgan lex and marv in these comp by human live ce, scien y threatened which are highl ecosystems, activities.

“This is a gorgeously illustrated book on a riveting subject: the charismatic bird and mammal species that we have already lost or are at risk of losing, the reasons for their demise, and what we can do to minimize our future losses.” 01 T H E L E G A C Y 5

Elsew here in our huge, cold, and little-c omprehended universe, contai The diversity of life ning more stars than has come a very long all the grains of sand on our way since those tiny, little-known planet, there may be ancestral organisms life. But life might, as far as we know, evolved into millions of differe be exclusive to Earth. nt species of plants, Ours animals, is a fascinating planet fungi, and microorgani . It had its beginning sms. Today, tropical forests roughly 4.6 billion years ago, when and coral reefs contain Earth’ it condensed, in very s richest reservoirs complex cosmological proces of species, and the biological wealth ses, from interstellar in both is extraordinar dust and gas. One billion years y. For example, a single hectar later, microscopic life e (2.47 acres) of a forest was well established in the oceans near Iquito s in Peru holds about 150 tree , having originated from still species, and 5 little-understood events hectares (12 acres) . in the forests of Borne o contain Although people have about 1,000 tree specie been interested in ancien s. In contrast, in all of North t life since the time of America north of Mexic the Greek philosopher o, a region covering s, it was not until the mid-tw almost 2 billion hectares (5 billion entieth century that acres) , there the techno are fewer ogy to date very old lthan 1,000 tree species. Thus, fossils accurately was it is not surpri develo sing that the ped. Previously, the most ideas of Charles Darwi precise date for the n and Alfred earlies Russel Wallace t life on Earth was estima (who both developed ted to be about 1 billion the theory that evolut years ago. But a surprising ion is driven by natural selecti discovery was made on) were inspired by the divers in 1983 in Warrawoona, in northw of life they saw in tropic ity estern Australia. An al regions. insightful group of scientists found Animals are far less fossils of various kinds obvious in tropical of forests filamentous bacteria than are plants, and approximately 3.5 billion seeing any large anima years l there is a old in stromatolite matter of luck. beds. Stromatolites Yet, in terms of divers are ancient ity, invertebrate structures formed by animal life in tropic the binding of sand al forests is even more grains by astounding microorganisms, prima than that of the vegeta rily cyanobacteria (bluetion. Invertebrates are green algae). Life indeed began animals without backbones long, long ago. The and include shellfish, earliest squid, octolife, however, was possib puses, and myriad other ly significantly older creatu res in the even oceans than 3.5 billion years, as . On land, the best-known these scientists noted group of invertebrates , becaus e these bacteria were is insects. The diversity and abund already pluricellular ance of tropical insect associations on their way to s is legendary: a single tree multicellularity, indica in the Amazon region ting that they had by then evolve may host hundreds of specie d significantly beyon s of beetles and more specie d their single-cell bacterial of ants than in the whole s ancestors. Stromatolite of Great Britain. We s can still be found in shallow are reminded of a famou coastal seawater in s quote attributed to places such as the brilliant Baja California and British scientist J. B. Western Australia. S. Haldane. When a theologian asked him what his study of biology had revealed

Including photography by Scott Altenbach, Jack Jeffrey, Claudio Contreras Koob, Frans Lanting, Roland Seitre, and others.

about the “mind of the creator,” he replied that the creator must have had “an inordinate fondn ess for beetles.” Insects, as Halda ne’s quote suggests, are one of the most diverse group s of animals, with more than a million known specie s and thousands more described by scientists every year. As surprising as it may seem, we are far from having even a rough grasp of the total numb er of species of plants, anima ls, and microorgani sms that populate our planet , even though rough ly 1.8 million species have been named and described so far. Recent estimates of the total number of species on Earth have ranged from a few millio n to more than 100 million species. And in the past few years, some resear chers have even estimated the number of specie s in the billions. Much, of course , depends on how one defines “species” and how micro organisms (including viruses) are evaluated, which is still the topic of long arguments among scienti sts. Regardless of the definit ion of a species and the exact number of them, the diversity of living organisms is truly astoun ding. Contrary to what most people believe, discov eries of new species are still quite common, especially among plants, inverte brates, and microorganisms. A recent survey by the International Institute for Specie s Exploration at Arizon a State University reported that 18,516 previously unknown species were discov ered in 2007, amoun ting to an average of 50 discoveries a day and equivalent to roughly 1 percent of all descri bed species. Similarly, the results of the first Census for Marine Life were annou nced at the end of 2010, a decade after it was launched. The

Surprisingly, more than five hundred species of mamm als have been discovered and described by scientists in the past decade. We are in a “New Age of Discovery,” where previously unknow n organisms are being brought to light across the world. Unfortunately, many of these species are found in regions wracked by habitat destruction and are themselves highly threatened. Two examples of such discoveries are a new night monke y (top) and an “extinct” Inca rat (bottom).

—Jared Diamond, author of  Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed and Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

Guadalupe Island, off the Baja Calif Mexico, was ornia coas considere t in d a biologica the mid-1800 l paradise s. Unfortun in ately, like islands in on many othe all oceans, introduced r decimated goats, cats its endemic , and rats birds and eradication plants. Succ efforts have essful allowed the some of its recovery of plants and animals.

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C 4 L O N G -S I L E N

ED SONGS

preceds unlike any that had confronted with a specie tes—our es, social, and hungry prima rnia Academy of Scienc ed it. These smart, A visit to the Califo speaks g “blitzkriegs.” sco’s Golden Gate Park, ubjected birds to huntin Franci ors—s San ancest in d warfare,” locate version of “lightning r that has befallen birds In the face of that early volumes about the disaste had a chance. The human ity. A maze of narrow many naïve birds never with the spread of human ionary terms that there leads an explorer ions evolut in collect fast ific so diaspora was corridors in the scient food or you will find a for birds valued for al Collection. There was scant opportunity our to the Ornithologic look inside, redator responses to “Extinct Birds.” If you feathers to evolve anti-p cabinet with a sign: in ul moment as you take ancestors’ onslaught. takeyou’ll experience a dreadf exist. human the longer of no aspect of species that Hunting was but one accidenthe sight of specimens and ts ecker habita changes in from the imperial woodp over. Unprecedented cats, Your eyes will move s of animals such as to the Guadalupe Island deliberate introduction or tal ction ved and the passenger pigeon lly preser often caused more destru others. Each is carefu rats, goats, and pigs petrel, among many 2,000 bird ve them We failed to preser directly. As many as twist. birds ironic killing an than islands in death— fades to to extinction on Pacific so very long ago. Dread species were driven 3,000 while they lived, not specimens, ent began between linger on these inert after human settlem s sadness as your eyes ted creatures. alone by sub-fossil remain g anima were judgin once ago, what years and 1,000 the last samples of were at a but seeing Many of those birds of numbing the mind, and other evidence. Numbers have a way should rial predators, birds terrest of g s lackin specie ; lost special disadvantage the remains of so many onal wings functi of ed . dispos ly t a pledge they had evolutionari touch a nerve and promp rats by flying. to escape people or and so were unable likely to d individuals were more Out of Africa Furthermore, winge that and their doom. The birds years ago, only the birds blown off islands to be Until perhaps 60,000 husive and damwould have encountered ain metabolically expen Africa maint of ls not did anima other nia before Western onal wings in the millen of bird species in the functi nds one thousa age-pr The putting mans. and on out-reproduced those of Asia, in Australia, Homo sapiens arrived Hemisphere, in most untouched appendages. ted lands and waters energy into then-useless oceanic islands inhabi bird species have gone 132 in Africa, humans least Even at . ly, beings More recent Another by modern human parts of s since the year 1500. and lived on only some extinct in these island were few in number more species around extinct now, and four they began to spread fifteen are possibly extincthe continent. But then occupying ity. Many other avian g into Eurasia, then survive only in captiv as the the world, first movin such and alia, ents, Austr contin all across Pacific islands and tions have occurred some southwestern . Birds were Western Hemisphere finally invading the

reports of other contemporary part of the bird.” But and was their meat tasted bad dodos indicated that to be eaten , easy meat was going tough. Nonetheless landed on the crews of ships that by hungry sailors, so ers of the and ate large numb Mauritius slaughtered . dodos eless defens today about how dodos Much of what is known gs of an obese drawings and paintin looked comes from es by ilver, some of the sketch and clumsy bird. Howe e bird. At of been an overfed captiv lustrators may have depicts 1500s the to back dating least one illustration and dry d marke has se Mauritius them as slim. Becau d themle that dodos fattene wet seasons, it is possib lived and during the wet season selves on ripe fruits was food the dry season, when on fat reserves during fat for have accumulated body scarce. Dodos also may time. then lost that fat over and ies activit ng breedi a huge ly a large bird. It had The dodo was certain tail was a and bulging eyes. Its bill, gaping nostrils, Adult ned high on its back. clump of feathers positio (1 yard) tall and meter 1 about dodos probably stood s). They 20 kilograms (44 pound The Enigmatic Dodo weighed as much as Their tion. has vegeta dodo on d and fed extinct early, the nested on the groun g and Among birds that went ridiculously to be adapted for shellin extinctions. It was a large beaks seemed of plants. become the icon of of breaking up the roots found only on the island eating fallen fruits or awkward-looking bird, ly 870 ng on the beak was Ocean, approximate that the horny coveri le Indian the possib in is It tius Mauri . A Dutch g periods. east of Madagascar shed during non-breedin ) kilometers (540 miles) , who visited s that evolved into dodos rick Dircksz Jolinck Dodos (or the specie sailor named Heynd n years and He wrote tius for several millio first described the dodo. had been on Mauri e of the island in 1598, that were birds, in the absenc wings island -sized many so pigeon evolved, like of a large bird with birds abundant fruits ular with partic Eden, “these , their noted predators. It was example useless for flying. He men d. Dodos were a classic it could provide two scattered on the groun have a stomach so large delicious was actually the most with a tasty meal and

India, Himalayan quail from pink-headed duck and nd, Bachman’s martin from Thaila the white-eyed river d States, the slender-bille United the from r warble from Guao, and the Atitlan grebe grackle from Mexic species numbers of endangered temala. Today, large as Madagascar, such s region al are found in tropic , Southeast pines, India, China Australia, the Philip Sumatra m and Cambodia), Asia (including Vietna and the Anesia, eastern Brazil, and Borneo in Indon loss and other t Peru, where habita des in Ecuador and brink of the to countless species causes have pushed , Egypt, States, Mexico, Brazil extinction. The United large South Africa also have Tanzania, Angola, and . It species and populations gered endan of ers numb is even number of extinctions actual the that is likely before s doubtless disappeared larger, as many specie some others are while e, scienc to they were known in such a long have not been seen extremely rare and bly gone. time that they are proba


5 BIRDS IN TROUBLE

America’s conservatio nist president, Theodore Roosevelt, knew what it meant to lose a species of bird. He once famously stated, The extermination of the passenger pigeon meant that mankind was just so much poorer; exactly as in the case of the destruction of the cathedral at Rheims. And to lose the chance to see frigate-birds soaring in circles above the storm, or a file of pelicans winging their way homeward across the crimson afterglow of the sunset, or a myriad terns flashing in the bright light of midday as they hover in a shifting maze above the beach—why, the loss is like the loss of a gallery of the masterpieces of the artists of old time.

1 : THE LEGACY 2 : NATURAL EXTINCTIONS 3 : THE ANTHROPOCENE

Unfortunately, Roosevelt’s fears became realities all too often as the twentieth century unfolded. Today thousands of bird populations and many entire species hang on by their wingtips. Large portions of our avifauna seem destined to disappear in this century if we continue with business as usual, as increasing climate disruption adds to the effects of habitat destruction, hunting, and other assaults humans have imposed on the world’s fauna. Beyond the species themselves, we will also lose the important roles birds play in our lives, from giving us esthetic pleasure to eating various insects that plague people. This chapter describes some of the birds we have lost in more recent times or are now close to losing.

Midnight for the Macaws The last known free-living individual of Spix’s macaw was seen in Brazil in the year 2000. The Spix’s macaw

got its common name from its discoverer, a German naturalist named Johann Baptist von Spix. Overharvesting has been the main culprit in the demise of this species. But people generally didn’t eat Spix’ s macaws; they captured them from the wild to be sold as house pets because of their great beauty and rarity. Even when the macaws were on the brink of becoming extinct, many reports indicate that capturing and sales continued until none were left to be trapped, caged, and sold. The species is now presumed to be extinct in the wild. Genetic evidence supports the view that, even before the wild birds were turned into pets, Spix’ s macaws survived in nature in extremely small numbers. They were predominantly found in woodlands along watercourses in otherwise treeless landscapes (so-called gallery forests) that were dominated by caraiba (trumpet) trees in which the birds nested. They usually fed on the fruits of two plant species belonging to the family Euphorbiaceae. The demise of the wild Spix’s macaws at the hands of the pet trade was accelerated by the loss of the forests and perhaps by the shooting of wild birds. Another possible human-fostered problem for the macaws was the invasion of their native habitats by aggressive Africanized honeybees. Honeybees are native to Africa, where they have long been subject to nest-raiding by mammals and birds for their honey and wax. People domesticated bees centuries ago, producing a relatively calm “Italian” strain, which has been introduced over much of the world, including in Brazil, where it was not a great producer of honey.

A well-known scientist, Warwick Kerr, thought that by hybridizing African and Brazilian bees he might be able to create a strain that was both calm and yielded a rich lode of honey. But before Kerr could do the experiment, a Brazilian beekeeper visiting Kerr’ s lab deliberately allowed some of the African bees to escape. That beekeeper’s motives are unknown, but besides possibly hastening the exit of Spix’s macaws, he has been responsible for the deaths of numerous human beings. In a poignant twist, the last known wild male Spix’ s macaw was discovered in 1990 paired with a female, but the female was not of his own species. The male Spix was trying to reproduce with was a female bluewinged macaw. The mismatched couple did mate, and she even laid eggs, but, as one might expect, the eggs were infertile. Conservationists tried to get the male hitched to a female Spix’s macaw by releasing a formerly captive female Spix’s into the territory of the interspecies pair, but the male showed no interest in her. Unhappily, she collided with a power line and disappeared, presumably dying from her injuries. This episode is an example of the difficulty of acclimatizing captive birds and successfully re-establishing species in nature. The “odd couple” presumably remained paired until January 2000, after which they too disappeared. More than seventy Spix’s macaws now live in captive breeding programs run by conservationis ts. To counter the risk of losing genetic variability due to inbreeding, individuals have been exchanged between various institutions in an effort to maintain their genetic diversity. But conservationists are afraid to

release the macaws, worrie up being trapped and sold macaws are currently held Preserve (AWWP), far fro Middle Eastern country of announced that it had pur (5,437 acres) of land in Br last wild Spix’s macaw had step-by-step process, dome removed from the site to fa pecially regeneration of the breeding. This commendab much money and effort are bird species a chance and h have been simply to protect once existed. Lonesome as the last wil plight has been shared by vi other species of macaws. Th highly social big parrots are forestation and capture for t macaws, the giants of the gro thousand individuals. Their macaw, is now represented in hundred or so birds in the in bulge of Brazil, where the sta which they depend for food remnants. Fortunately, thoug in both species, and local con landowners are working to ke Is it really so important to apartment in New York or M

4 : LONG-SILENCED SONGS 5 : BIRDS IN TROUBLE 6 : MAMMALS LOST

Not only are species and population from Earth s disappear , but so are ing larger biolo na. The migr gical phen ation of wilde omebeest on the Plains of East Serengeti Africa is one mammal migr of two rema ining great ations on the planet, that of Cana the other dian carib being ou. The comp more than lex movement 1.5 million individual of after rains s to find fresh is now threa grass tened by road designed, among othe developm ent r things, to tion of colta aid the explo n. Here a grou itap of some wildebees three thou t plunge into sand the crocodile-i River in Tanz nfested Mara ania in a spec tacular, noisy crossing. , and risky

7 : VANISHING MAMMALS 8 : WHY IT ALL MATTERS 9 : DRIVERS OF DEATH 10 : BEYOND MOURNING 143

H S O F D E AT 9 DRIVER r efforts itudinous othe or all the mult must be altered an undisin vain. h seems to be will prove to be m spac e, Eart hurricane, Vie wed fro lly shaken by a adica a spor mm only ral turbed planet, r large-scale natu The Human Dile ce of the tion, or some othe ched the surfa the have only scrat or volcanic erup rprise is can plainly see In this book we stYet an astronaut sized human ente phenomenon. which the over inated like a Chri planet’s life-supmany ways in e land areas illum ing parts of our a small of work de planet’s nighttim the altitu ing that, even demolish h closer, at the ads of lations indicate myri calcu e by mas display. Muc ed Som anothscarr port systems. r to see lands relative misery, h is people living in airplane, it is easie ities. Our Eart today’s with billions of from human activ ired to maintain ionist Aldo Leoimpacts derived h would be requ lations er half an Eart as the conservat But those calcu nds,” “it ly. d, wou of finite adde d he inde n “a worl yet, as us and insidious human populatio it. And worse inuo ribed cont desc the unt for pold once ns and do not fully acco le.” uman populatio thinks itself who organizations diversity of nonh health erosion of the nongovernmental amental to the efforts, Governments, sity that is fund ens are making species—diver individual citiz y ns. (NGOs), and of Homo sapie iversity loss. Man from re biod ed of welfa pass tide and have the nhuman activity of course, to stem ect other orga just in The impacts of put aside to prot atically global limit the regional to dram reserves have been an attempt to rint is now largely local and been passed in captive The human footp so. and or ns, isms, laws have ry latio centu et, plan from the past wild animal popu te places of the pts to remo attem exploitation of in most s, up the set visible in highest mountain rams have been ed breeding prog the oceans to the ts. severely endanger the depths of individuals of impenetrable fores s. These produce more ra to the most the remaining wild on frozen tund t, the cause of doub roduce into the out popreint to life with ies are, spec did successes: wild Human activities r way. But how enjoyed some ction now unde programs have hunters, California but the sixth mass extin by fees paid by lems are complex, Asiatic ulations supported ed: too up here? The prob Grand Canyon, deni end the we often into and sed n, ed condors relea le, long know st, and endanger answer is simp on in the Gir Fore many resources. rtee, lions hanging consuming too breed in Cape many humans marize it this way: rs managing to ed and l scientists sum regent honeyeate esses are limit Environmenta all of these succ asing human Queensland. But incre of face the orary in I = PAT, tion, the basic likely only temp ump its cons an enterprise on and aggregate sequently, ct (I) of the hum population size the rioration. Con where the impa biodiversity) is onmental dete ms (including drivers of envir , the world’s bird d by life-support syste ts to protect them size (P) multiplie disis lation sity popu an diver despite the effor ies product of hum lation and spec rs that and mammal popu most basic drive let’s consider the appearing. So

(A), tion or affluence capita consump onthe average per ating the envir a factor incorpor and multiplied by es (T) employed of the technologi For tion. ump mental impacts cons to provide the lly friendhow they are used environmenta les are a more iles, mob auto example, bicyc than for transportation ng as ly technology dly than commuti are more frien person and car pools than the I of a their I is lower individuals; thus day. every e alon of the I driving to work through the lens seen d worl because Globally, the e I is growing is a world wher an en= PAT equation ing. As the hum are mostly grow its ral world and all three factors natu the laces it disp tion terprise expands, habitat fragmenta are accelerating resources, iving denizens. We nonl and iting living and loss, overexplo

less ter is a tooth The giant antea unsursloths, which, relative of the ites) by ants (and term prisingly, eats h on its long, into its mout them g takin d but It is widesprea e. tongu y stick several me extinct in has already beco It ding Costa Rica. countries, inclu is very quickly and thus cannot move opogenic hunting, anthr vulnerable to acciby dogs, road fires, predation n. at destructio dents, and habit


THE AN N I H I L AT IO N OF N A T U R E Human Extinction of Birds and Mammals Gerardo Ceballos, Anne H. Ehrlich, and Paul R. Ehrlich “A beautiful lament for the vanishing wildlife of the world—wrapped in a message of hope.”—Tim Flannery, author of Weather Makers: How Man Is Changing the Climate and What It Means for Life on Earth Publication date: September 2015 8 x 10, 208 pages, 83 color photographs 978-1-4214-1718-9 $29.95 hardcover Also available as an e-book

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Johns Hopkins University Press, The Annihilation of Nature  

In this beautiful book, three of today’s most distinguished conservationists tell the stories of the birds and mammals we have lost and tho...

Johns Hopkins University Press, The Annihilation of Nature  

In this beautiful book, three of today’s most distinguished conservationists tell the stories of the birds and mammals we have lost and tho...

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