Status and Ecological Effects of the World’s Largest Carnivores

  title={Status and Ecological Effects of the World’s Largest Carnivores},
  author={William J. Ripple and James A. Estes and Robert L. Beschta and Christopher C. Wilmers and Euan G. Ritchie and Mark Hebblewhite and Joel Berger and Bodil Elmhagen and Mike Letnic and Michael Paul Nelson and Oswald J. Schmitz and Douglas W. Smith and Arian D. Wallach and Aaron J. Wirsing},
Background The largest terrestrial species in the order Carnivora are wide-ranging and rare because of their positions at the top of food webs. They are some of the world’s most admired mammals and, ironically, some of the most imperiled. Most have experienced substantial population declines and range contractions throughout the world during the past two centuries. Because of the high metabolic demands that come with endothermy and large body size, these carnivores often require large prey and… 
Rewilding the world's large carnivores
The results show the global-scale potential for carnivore rewilding projects to both conserve these species and provide critical ecological and social benefits.
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The rate of large herbivore decline suggests that ever-larger swaths of the world will soon lack many of the vital ecological services these animals provide, resulting in enormous ecological and social costs.
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Many of the world's vertebrates have experienced large population and geographic range declines due to anthropogenic threats that put them at risk of extinction. The largest vertebrates, defined as
Range contractions of the world's large carnivores
The extent to which ranges have contracted since historical times is revealed and new insights are offered into how best to prevent further range contractions for the world's largest carnivores, which will assist efforts to conserve these species and their important ecological effects.
Community Structure of South American Carnivores in the Past and Present
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The most recent knowledge on the current distribution and the ecology of the European catfish are reviewed and a series of key research questions are identified that should stimulate new research on this intriguing, yet largely unknown, species.
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The ecology of human–carnivore coexistence
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The ecology of Homo sapiens is put in the context of comparative interspecific ecological roles and impacts, focusing on the large omnivore guild, as well as comparative intraspecific variation,ocusing on hunter‐gatherers.


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Carnivores of the World
Carnivores of the World is the first comprehensive field guide to all 245 terrestrial species of true carnivores, from the majestic polar bear and predatory wild cats to the tiny least weasel.
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It is shown, by reviewing the most common live prey in carnivore diets, that there is a striking transition from feeding on small prey to large prey (near predator mass), occurring at predator masses of 21.5–25 kg, and the predicted maximum mass that an invertebrate diet can sustain is predicted.
Because most large, terrestrial mammalian predators have already been lost from more than 95-99% of the contiguous United States and Mexico, many ecological communities are either missing dominant
Range Contractions of North American Carnivores and Ungulates
Abstract We compared the historic and current geographical ranges of 43 North American carnivores and ungulates to identify large-scale patterns in range contractions and expansions. Seventeen of the
Rarity of a top predator triggers continent-wide collapse of mammal prey: dingoes and marsupials in Australia
It is suggested that many remaining Australian mammals would benefit from the positive management of dingoes, and a strong positive relationship between the survival of marsupials and the geographical overlap with high-density dingo populations is shown.
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Analysis of the composition of large predator guilds and prey densities across a productivity gradient in boreal and temperate forests of North America and Eurasia found that predation by large mammalian carnivores, especially sympatric gray wolves and bears, apparently limits densities of large mammalian herbivores.
Large carnivores and the conservation of biodiversity
  • J. Ray
  • Environmental Science
  • 2005
Large Carnivores and the Conservation of Biodiversity is the first detailed, broad-scale examination of the empirical evidence regarding the role of large carnivores in biodiversity conservation in both marine and terrestrial ecosystems.