Thursday, October 09, 2014

Half of Earth's wildlife disappeared in past 40 years: WWF warns biodiversity loss is alarming

[Tech Times] More than half of the world's wildlife has disappeared over the past 40 years and humans are largely attributed to this loss, a report by the conservation group World Wildlife Fund (WWF) revealed on Tuesday.
The Living Planet Report, which is published biannually by the WWF and is based on the Living Planet Index of the Zoological Society of London that monitors over 10,000 vertebrate species, revealed that the decline in the population of the world's animals is worse than previously believed. Two years ago, the WWF's report put the figure of wildlife loss at only 28 percent for the period between 1970 and 2008.
The report revealed that the population of amphibians, birds, fish, mammals and reptiles dropped by an average of 52 percent between 1970 and 2010 but the worse impact was seen in freshwater species, which saw a decline of 76 percent over the same period, or almost double than the biodiversity loss experienced by land and other marine species. It also showed that the biggest declines occurred in tropical regions particularly in Latin America, which lost 83 percent of animals in four decades.
The drop in wildlife population is mostly blamed on man-made activities such as excessive emission of carbon dioxide, cutting of trees, pumping of groundwater, hunting and overfishing albeit invasive species and diseases also posed threats to wildlife population. Read More