Determinants of loss of mammal species during the Late Quaternary ‘megafauna’ extinctions: life history and ecology, but not body size

@article{Johnson2002DeterminantsOL,
  title={Determinants of loss of mammal species during the Late Quaternary ‘megafauna’ extinctions: life history and ecology, but not body size},
  author={C. N. Johnson},
  journal={Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences},
  year={2002},
  volume={269},
  pages={2221 - 2227}
}
  • C. Johnson
  • Published 7 November 2002
  • Environmental Science
  • Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences
Extinctions of megafauna species during the Late Quaternary dramatically reduced the global diversity of mammals. There is intense debate over the causes of these extinctions, especially regarding the extent to which humans were involved. Most previous analyses of this question have focused on chronologies of extinction and on the archaeological evidence for human–megafauna interaction. Here, I take an alternative approach: comparison of the biological traits of extinct species with those of… 

Figures and Tables from this paper

Environmental correlates of the Late Quaternary regional extinctions of large and small Palaearctic mammals
Most studies of mammal extinctions during the Pleistocene–Holocene transition explore the relative effects of climate change vs. human impacts on these extinctions, but the relative importance of the
Extinctions of herbivorous mammals in the late Pleistocene of Australia in relation to their feeding ecology: No evidence for environmental change as cause of extinction
TLDR
It is shown that in both browsers and grazers the probability of extinction was very strongly related to body mass, and the body mass at which extinction became likely was similar in the two groups.
The changing role of mammal life histories in Late Quaternary extinction vulnerability on continents and islands
TLDR
Using phylogenetic regression and classification trees, it is found that while life-history traits are poor predictors of historic extinctions, those associated with difficulty in responding quickly to perturbations, such as small litter size, are good predictor of prehistoric extinctions.
The ghosts of mammals past: biological and geographical patterns of global mammalian extinction across the Holocene
  • S. Turvey, Susanne A. Fritz
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2011
TLDR
It is found that Holocene extinctions have been phylogenetically and spatially concentrated in specific taxa and geographical regions, which are often not congruent with those disproportionately at risk today.
Human influence on distribution and extinctions of the late Pleistocene Eurasian megafauna.
Megafaunal extinction in the late Quaternary and the global overkill hypothesis
TLDR
The global blitzkrieg hypothesis explains differential rates of megafaunal extinction between the world's landmasses in the late Quaternary based on a proposed leap in predation efficiency enjoyed by colonising societies based on simplistic interpretations of complex biogeographicat and anthropological phenomena.
Climate‐driven ecological stability as a globally shared cause of Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions: the Plaids and Stripes Hypothesis
TLDR
An integrative hypothesis is asserted that an underlying cause of Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions was a fundamental shift in the spatio‐temporal fabric of ecosystems worldwide, triggered by the loss of the millennial‐scale climate fluctuations that were characteristic of the ice age but ceased approximately 11700 years ago on most continents.
Body Size and Extinction Risk in Terrestrial Mammals Above the Species Level
  • Susumu Tomiya
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    The American Naturalist
  • 2013
TLDR
The North American fossil record of 276 terrestrial genera was examined to uncover the relationship between body size and extinction probability above the species level, and revealed no correlation between sampling-adjusted durations and body masses ranging 7 orders of magnitude.
The Paleoecological Impact of Grazing and Browsing: Consequences of the Late Quaternary Large Herbivore Extinctions
  • John Rowan, J. Faith
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    The Ecology of Browsing and Grazing II
  • 2019
As recently as ~50,000 years ago, a great diversity of large-bodied mammalian herbivores (species >44 kg) occupied nearly all of Earth’s terrestrial realms. Outside of sub-Saharan Africa, the vast
The well-behaved killer: Late Pleistocene humans in Eurasia were significantly associated with living megafauna only
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 48 REFERENCES
Pleistocene faunal loss: implications of the aftershock for Australia's past and future
A unifying, predictive hypothesis is developed that explains many facets of late Quaternary biotic change in Australia. Pleistocene faunal extinction (commonly called megafaunal extinction) is
The Archaeological Record of Human Impacts on Animal Populations
TLDR
The history of this famous argument suggests that it is better seen as a statement of faith about the past rather than as an appeal to reason, and burgeoning knowledge of past human impacts on animals has important implications for the conservation biology of the future.
Mammals of the Neotropics
"Mammals of the Neotropics" satisfies the need for a comprehensive, up-to-date survey of existing knowledge of South America's terrestrial and marine mammals. No comparable account of South American
Prehistoric Extinctions on Islands and Continents
Geological extinction of a continental megafauna of Holarctic mammoths, American ground sloths, and Australian diprotodonts, to name a few mammalian examples, rivals pulsing ice sheets and
New Ages for the Last Australian Megafauna: Continent-Wide Extinction About 46,000 Years Ago
TLDR
This work reports burial ages for megafauna from 28 sites and infer extinction across the continent around 46,400 years ago, ruling out extreme aridity at the Last Glacial Maximum as the cause of extinction, but not other climatic impacts; a "blitzkrieg" model of human-induced extinction; or an extended period of anthropogenic ecosystem disruption.
THE ECOLOGICAL BASIS OF LIFE HISTORY VARIATION IN MARSUPIALS
TLDR
Overall variation in a key life history variable, reproductive output, is significantly related to variation in type of diet, with a foliage-rich diet being associated with low fecundity.
MAMMALS OF AUSTRALIA
This historic publication provides an account of every species of native mammals known to have existed in Australia since European settlement and every introduced species now living in a wild state.
Pleistocene extinction of genyornis newtoni: human impact on australian megafauna
TLDR
Simultaneous extinction of Genyornis at all sites during an interval of modest climate change implies that human impact, not climate, was responsible.
Molecular phylogenetics and the origins of placental mammals
TLDR
The potential weaknesses of limited character and taxon sampling are addressed in a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of 64 species sampled across all extant orders of placental mammals, providing new insight into the pattern of the early placental mammal radiation.
Putting North America’s End-Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinction in Context
After many decades of debate, the North American end-Pleistocene megafaunal mass extinction remains a lightning rod of controversy. The extraordinarily divergent opinions expressed in this volume
...
1
2
3
4
5
...