Inferring extinction of mammals from sighting records, threats, and biological traits

Fisher, Diana O. and Blomberg, Simon P. (2012) Inferring extinction of mammals from sighting records, threats, and biological traits. Conservation Biology, 26 1: 57-67. doi:10.1111/j.1523-1739.2011.01797.x


Author Fisher, Diana O.
Blomberg, Simon P.
Title Inferring extinction of mammals from sighting records, threats, and biological traits
Journal name Conservation Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0888-8892
1523-1739
Publication date 2012-02
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2011.01797.x
Volume 26
Issue 1
Start page 57
End page 67
Total pages 11
Place of publication Hoboken, NJ, United States
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
For species with five or more sightings, quantitative techniques exist to test whether a species is extinct on the basis of distribution of sightings. However, 70% of purportedly extinct mammals are known from fewer than five sightings, and such models do not include some important indicators of the likelihood of extinction such as threats, biological traits, search effort, and demography. Previously, we developed a quantitative method that we based on species’ traits in which we used Cox proportional hazards regression to calculate the probability of rediscovery of species regarded as extinct. Here, we used two versions of the Cox regression model to determine the probability of extinction in purportedly extinct mammals and compared the results of these two models with those of stationary Poisson, nonparametric, and Weibull sighting-distribution models. For mammals with five or more sightings, the stationary Poisson model categorized all but two critically endangered (flagged as possibly extinct) species in our data set as extinct, and results with this model were consistent with current categories of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. The scores of probability of rediscovery for individual species in one version of our Cox regression model were correlated with scores assigned by the stationary Poisson model. Thus, we used this Cox regression model to determine the probability of extinction of mammals with sparse records. On the basis of the Cox regression model, the most likely mammals to be rediscovered were the Montane monkey-faced bat (Pteralopex pulchra), Armenian myotis (Myotis hajastanicus), Alcorn's pocket gopher (Pappogeomys alcorni), and Wimmer's shrew (Crocidura wimmeri). The Cox model categorized two species that have recently disappeared as extinct: the baiji (Lipotes vexillifer) and the Christmas Island pipistrelle (Pipistrellus murrayi). Our new method can be used to test whether species with few records or recent last-sighting dates are likely to be extinct.
Keyword Cox proportional hazards regression
Rediscovery
Solow equation
Ecuacion de Solow
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article first published online: 2 December 2011.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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