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Posts Tagged "genetic bottleneck"

Extinction Countdown

To Save the Sumatran Rhino, Zoo Will Attempt to Mate Brother and Sister

sumatran rhino dumont sq

Sometimes you just get desperate. In a last-ditch effort to help save the Sumatran rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) from extinction, the Cincinnati Zoo has gathered together the last two members of the species in North America and will now attempt to get them to mate. There’s just one catch: the rhinos are brother and sister. Normally [...]

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Extinction Countdown

What Do Tigers and Kiwi Have in Common? The Answer Lies in Their Genes

bengal tiger

At first (and probably second) glance you wouldn’t think that tigers and kiwis have all that much in common. Bengal tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) live in India and the surrounding countries, where the predators can weigh more than 220 kilograms. Little spotted kiwi (Apteryx owenii) live exclusively in New Zealand, where the flightless birds weigh [...]

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Extinction Countdown

De-Extinction: Can Cloning Bring Extinct Species Back to Life?

passenger pigeon

At some point in the next decade, if advances in biotechnology continue on their current path, clones of extinct species such as the passenger pigeon, Tasmanian tiger and wooly mammoth could once again live among us. But cloning lost species—or “de-extinction” as some scientists call it—presents us with myriad ethical, legal and regulatory questions that [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Last 500 Ethiopian Wolves Endangered by Lack of Genetic Diversity

ethiopian wolf

The last wolves in Africa face a difficult road if they are going to survive. Just 500 Ethiopian wolves (Canis simensis) remain in the mountains of the country for which they are named. The animals now live in six fragmented populations located hundreds of kilometers apart from one another; three of these populations have fewer [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Snow Leopard News: Climate Change, Radio Collars, Heart Troubles and a Video First

Wow, this is quite the week for snow leopards (Panthera uncia) with not one, not two, not three but four interesting stories coming out about these endangered big cats. Let’s start with the bad news. Climate change, as you might expect, could soon create trouble for snow leopards living in the Himalayas. According to a [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Low genetic diversity, local resentment threaten great Indian bustard

Decades of widespread hunting and poaching have taken a mighty toll on the great Indian bustard (Ardeotis nigriceps), an endangered bird once found throughout India and Pakistan but now limited to a few small populations totaling maybe 1,000 individuals. New research reveals that the species is in worse shape than previously realized. According to a [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Rare Siberian tigers face potential genetic bottleneck

It’s been a long century for the Amur, or Siberian, tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), the largest of the six remaining tiger subspecies. Once hunted nearly to extinction, just 50 tigers remained when Russia protected the species in 1947. Despite that protection, illegal poaching soon dropped that number to as few as 20. But enforcement and [...]

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