["Numbers rule the universe," Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras said. For the month of May, 13.7 Billion Years will reprise the theme from September 2010, presenting a new number to think about each weekday with the series Crunching Numbers.]
The Global Marine Species Assessment project is the first global review of the threat of extinction for every marine vertebrate species, plants and selected invertebrates, currently underway and conducted by the IUCN Species Programme Marine Biodiversity Unit. It began in 2005.
Though it is estimated that there are between 250,000 and one million marine species, this assessment is targeting some 20,000 species believed to be at some level of risk.
The upcoming workshop will be held in July in Dakar, Senegal, and will assess 350 species of West African shore fishes.
Today is International Day for Biological Diversity, set by the United Nations. This year's theme is marine biodiversity, which has been challenged by a host of human causes, such as overfishing (bluefin tuna, a sushi favorite, is on the edge), pollution, climate change and ocean acidification.
In honor of International Day for Biological Diversity, ARKive.org put together some awesome photos of marine species. Also, check out these 13 threatened animals of the ocean.
"From 1980 to 2008, an average of 52 species per year moved one category closer to extinction on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Endangered Species—a rate that shows no signs of slowing," according to Worldwatch Institute.
"Although mass extinctions have occurred on Earth throughout geologic time, the current loss of biodiversity is the first to be caused overwhelmingly by a single species: humans."
- How will you celebrate International Day for Biological Diversity? [add comment]
- Do you avoid eating animals that are endangered, like bluefin tuna? [add comment]
- Are you at all concerned about the staggering loss of biodiversity, and if so, how has that affected your life? [add comment]
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