• Publications
  • Influence
Multiple ecological pathways to extinction in mammals
The results increase the understanding of extinction processes, generate simple rules of thumb that identify species at greatest risk, and highlight the potential of decision-tree analyses to inform conservation efforts.
The Evolution of Maximum Body Size of Terrestrial Mammals
Analysis suggests that although the primary driver for the evolution of giant mammals was diversification to fill ecological niches, environmental temperature and land area may have ultimately constrained the maximum size achieved.
Drivers and hotspots of extinction risk in marine mammals
This paper used powerful machine-learning and spatial-modeling approaches to understand the intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of marine mammal extinction risk, and used this information to predict risk across all marine mammals, including IUCN “Data Deficient” species.
Two-phase increase in the maximum size of life over 3.5 billion years reflects biological innovation and environmental opportunity
This period-level compilation of the largest known fossil organisms demonstrates that maximum size increased by 16 orders of magnitude since life first appeared in the fossil record.
Extinction patterns in the avifauna of the Hawaiian islands
  • A. Boyer
  • Environmental Science
  • 1 May 2008
This first systematic analysis of the factors characterizing the species that went extinct in each time period and those that survived in order to provide a clearer picture of the possible causal mechanisms underlying the two waves of extinction is presented.
Magnitude and variation of prehistoric bird extinctions in the Pacific
The largest extinction event in the Holocene occurred on Pacific islands, where Late Quaternary fossils reveal the loss of thousands of bird populations following human colonization of the region, and a Bayesian mark-recapture approach is used to model gaps in the fossil record and quantify losses of nonpasserine landbirds.
Extinctions and the loss of ecological function in island bird communities
It is found that Holocene bird extinctions led to substantial changes in community-level functional diversity, illustrating the significant losses of functional diversity that are already taking place on many islands and demonstrate its close connection with the loss of species.
The maximum rate of mammal evolution
  • A. Evans, David Jones, M. Uhen
  • Biology, Environmental Science
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 30 January 2012
An exponential increase in maximum mammal body mass during the 35 million years following the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event is found and a basic asymmetry in macroevolution is indicated: very large decreases can happen at more than 10 times the rate of increases.
Biogeography of body size in Pacific island birds
Many insular vertebrates have undergone rapid and dramatic changes in body size compared to their mainland counterparts. Here we explore the relationship between two well known patterns of island
The island rule and the evolution of body size in the deep sea
Like islands, the deep sea is characterized by low absolute food availability, leading us to hypothesize that the island rule is a result of selection on body size in a resource-constrained environment.