Humans pressure lagomorphs

This study examined the phylogeny of Lagomorpha—the taxonomic order that includes pikas, rabbits, hares and jackrabbits—one quarter of which is threatened with extinction.

Data resources used via GBIF : 139,686 species occurrences
Brown Hare (Lepus europaeus)

Brown Hare (Lepus europaeus) by Guillermo Debandi via iNaturalist. Photo licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0.

One quarter of all Lagomorpha—the taxonomic order that includes pikas, rabbits, hares and jackrabbits—are threatened with extinction. This study examined the phylogeny of lagomorphs and, combined with GBIF-mediated occurrences, attempted to draw parallels between evolutionary properties and patterns of diversity and extinction risk. But researchers found no apparent evolutionary traits associated with extinction risk, and no link between either climate or range size and number of species per genus. Instead, the discovery that the strongest predictor of extinction risk is habitats with high human population densities led them to conclude that severe man-made pressures override ecological, biological, and geographic variation in present lagomorphs.

Citations

Verde Arregoitia LD, Leach K, Reid N and Fisher DO (2015) Diversity, extinction, and threat status in Lagomorphs. Ecography. Wiley-Blackwell, 1155–1165. Available at doi:10.1111/ecog.01063.

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