18 February 2010

Primates threatened with extinction

Half the planet's primates are threatened with extinction, bleated the Britpress as one today. Habitat loss due to peasants cutting down forests is mainly to blame, says a report by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and 'other conservation and research groups'.

Oooh! No agenda there, fershur. Just the same dispassionate science that gave us man-made global warming. Since habitat destruction has been going on for a long time, we must have lost quite a few already. Right?

Wrong. Of the 4,428 known mammal species (Red List 2004), only three mammals (no primates) have gone extinct in the last 500 years: the Bluebuck in South Africa, the Algerian gazelle, and the much-missed Omilteme cottontail rabbit in Mexico. All hunted to extinction.

The only primate threatened with extinction is the sapiens bit of Homo sapiens.

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