19 Jul '11, 7am

Loss of Top Predators is "Humankind's Most Pervasive Influence on Nature" | Care2 Causes

According to a review paper titled Trophic Downgrading of Planet Earth, published last week in the journal Science , killing top predators is humankind’s most pervasive influence on nature that has far reaching and devastating effects. The study was conducted by a team of 24 scientists from around the world who compiled evidence from both experiments and observations to draw conclusions about the decline of top predators and herbivores on land, in the ocean and in freshwater. “Their findings suggest that “trophic downgrading” – the ecological consequences of losing large apex consumers from nature – causes extensive cascading effects in ecosystems worldwide, especially when exacerbated by factors such as land use practices, climate changes, habitat loss, and pollution,” according to a statement from the Institute for Ocean Conservation Science, which provided major funding...

Full article: http://www.care2.com/causes/loss-of-top-predators-is-huma...

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