Species extinction in tropical forestsTweet
Media Source: BBC
Program Name: Science in Action
Show Name: Species extinction in tropical forests
Broadcast Year: 2013
Original Link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/scia
Luke Gibson from the University of Singapore was a researcher in a two decade long study about the impact of rainforest fragmentation on biodiversity. Large rainforests are frequently split into smaller parcels due to human logging activity, but rising water levels can also contribute to fragmentation. This particular study focused on a rainforest in Thailand that was turned into a series of small islands after the creation of a reservoir in the area. Instead of surviving in this smaller parcel of the former ecosystem, small mammals (and even medium and large mammals) largely disappeared from the area. Gibson then ties the study to the Atlantic facing forests in South America, where newly fragmented areas are as small as the ones in this study. This suggests that even if small parts of forests survive floods and droughts that increase with higher global temperatures, the biodiversity in those fragments will still fall drastically. This is particularly relevant in island clusters and costal ecosystems; as the land next to certain clusters starts to disappear, the species in the remaining clusters begin to die off. This story starts at 7:29 and ends at 9:18, after the introduction, a story about Mars soil content, and a story about a Pakistani earthquake.