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Persistence Of Large Mammal Faunas As Indicators Of Global Human Impacts

Large mammals often play critical roles within ecosystems by affecting either prey populations or the structure and species composition of surrounding vegetation. However, large mammals are highly vulnerable to extirpation by humans and consequently, severe contractions of species ranges result in intact large mammal faunas becoming increasingly rare. We compared historical (AD 1500) range maps of large mammals with their current distributions to determine which areas today retain complete assemblages of large mammals. We estimate that less than 21% of

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Contemporary niche contraction affects climate change predictions for elephants and giraffes

Aim: Climate change assessments are largely based on correlative species distribution models (SDMs) that are sensible to spatial biases or incompleteness of input distribution data. We tested whether changes on the species’ climatic niche resulting from recent human-induced range contractions have a significant influence on SDM predictions of future species distributions. Location: Africa. Methods: For this study, we selected two highly detectable species with acknowledged human-induced range contractions, namely the African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) and giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis). We

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