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UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of ten of America's presidencies and who has edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review, which has been on the web since 1995, is now published from Freeport, Maine. We get over 5 million article visits a year. See prorev.com for full contents of our site

March 15, 2010

STUDY FINDS EVEN PROTECTED ANIMALS THREATENED WITH EXTINCTION

TREE HUGGER - India has had a system of wildlife sanctuaries since 1928. Now, there are more than 500 in the country ranging from dedicated tiger and bird reserves to more general areas intend to protect habitats rich in biological diversity.

Unfortunately, according to a new study, even these efforts may not be enough to save some of the country's most critically endangered species from extinction.

Considering the rate of economic growth in India, researchers concluded that existing protected areas will need to be expanded-and new ones established-if several large mammal species are to be preserved.

Researchers from Wildlife Conservation Society, Duke University, and other groups evaluated the extinction probability of a sample of 25 large mammals. To construct a model, the team looked at the current population and distribution of each species and compared them to more than 30,000 historical records from natural history and museum databases covering the last 200 years.

The model showed that all 25 species would experience at least local extinction. Large-bodied mammals, habitat specialists, and very rare species showed the highest vulnerability, some with as much as a 96 percent chance of extinction.


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