Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research


Predicting extinction in a changing environment

12 November 2013

Predicting how species might respond to a changing environment is central to the CBER research goals.  Using microcosm communities, we examined how rising temperature impacts time to extinction, finding that extinction occurs earlier in environments that warm faster; this can be accurately predicted. 

We found that simple phenomenological models, incorporating metabolic theory, may be useful in understanding how environmental change can alter a population's rate of extinction.

Clements C, Collen B, Blackburn T & Petchy O. (in press) Effects of directional environmental change on extinction dynamics in experimental microbial communities are predicted by a simple model. Oikos