Extrinsic versus intrinsic factors in the decline and extinction of Australian marsupials

Fisher, Diana O., Blomberg, Simon P. and Owens, Ian P. F. (2003) Extrinsic versus intrinsic factors in the decline and extinction of Australian marsupials. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B, 270 1526: 1801-1808. doi:10.1098/rspb.2003.2447


Author Fisher, Diana O.
Blomberg, Simon P.
Owens, Ian P. F.
Title Extrinsic versus intrinsic factors in the decline and extinction of Australian marsupials
Journal name Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0962-8452
1471-2954
Publication date 2003-09-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1098/rspb.2003.2447
Volume 270
Issue 1526
Start page 1801
End page 1808
Total pages 8
Editor Michael P. Hassell
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher The Royal Society Publishing
Language eng
Subject 06 Biological Sciences
Abstract Recent attempts to explain the susceptibility of vertebrates to declines worldwide have largely focused on intrinsic factors such as body size, reproductive potential, ecological specialization, geographical range and phylogenetic longevity. Here, we use a database of 145 Australian marsupial species to test the effects of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors in a multivariate comparative approach. We model five intrinsic (body size, habitat specialization, diet, reproductive rate and range size) and four extrinsic (climate and range overlap with introduced foxes, sheep and rabbits) factors. We use quantitative measures of geographical range contraction as indices of decline. We also develop a new modelling approach of phylogenetically independent contrasts combined with imputation of missing values to deal simultaneously with phylogenetic structuring and missing data. One extrinsic variable-geographical range overlap with sheep-was the only consistent predictor of declines. Habitat specialization was independently but less consistently associated with declines. This suggests that extrinsic factors largely determine interspecific variation in extinction risk among Australian marsupials, and that the intrinsic factors that are consistently associated with extinction risk in other vertebrates are less important in this group. We conclude that recent anthropogenic changes have been profound enough to affect species on a continent-wide scale, regardless of their intrinsic biology.
Keyword Biology
Endangered species preservation
Extinction
Phylogenetic comparative methods
Introduced species
Mammals
Multiple imputation
New South Wales
Phylogenies
Independent contrasts
Conservation
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

 
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Created: Mon, 13 Aug 2007, 23:47:05 EST