Understanding the ecology of extinction: are we close to the critical threshold?

Timothy Guy Benton

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Citations (Scopus)


    How much do we understand about the ecology of extinction? A review of recent literature, and a recent conference in Helsinki gives a snapshot of the "state of the art"*. This "snapshot" is important as it highlights what we currently know, the tools available for studying the process of extinction, its ecological correlates, and the theory concerning extinction thresholds. It also highlights that insight into the ecology of extinction can come from areas as diverse as the study of culture, the fossil record and epidemiology. Furthermore, it indicates where the gaps in knowledge and understanding exist. Of particular note is the need either to generate experimental data, or to make use of existing empirical data-perhaps through meta-analyses, to test general theory and guide its future development.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)71-80
    Number of pages9
    JournalAnnales Zoologici Fennici
    Publication statusPublished - 2003


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