24 Aug '11, 3pm

Where Has All the Genetic Diversity Gone?

Last week, I wrote about the latest meta-analysis documenting the steady march of species away from the equator and up the mountain slopes in response to a warming world. This week, a study from the Biodiversity and Climate Research Center in Germany, highlighted a new layer of complexity to consider when it comes to conservation efforts in the face of climate change — the almost invisible erosion of genetic diversity because of climate-induced range contractions. The paper, titled “Cryptic Biodiversity Loss Linked to Global Climate Change ,” was published online in Nature Climate Change. When we think of preserving biodiversity, we usually focus on the conservation of species. But the traditional, taxinomically defined species, conceal within their ranks a great wealth of “cryptic” diversity in the form of different lineages and species on the brink of emerging. This hidd...

Full article: http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/08/24/where-has-all-t...

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