[Taxacom] when is a common species critically endangered?
stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
Wed Jun 27 17:11:12 CDT 2012
>Since cultivated Clianthus maximus is maintained by humans the mite is in effect living in an anthropogenic habitat<
It is unclear to me what your point is, but note that no habitat left on Earth is completely unmodified by human activity, so there is no such thing any more as truly natural conditions. Interestingly, a formerly "Nationally Critical" insect (Motuweta isolata) has now had its threat status lowered, simply because a whole bunch were reared in the lab (all from a single original female), and released "back into the wild" where they are now breeding quite well by themselves.
There is no barrier for the Clianthus mite to reinvade plants in the wild from plants in cultivation, and there is *some* evidence that it can survive on other related plants at a push ...
The problem is that there is an understood "in the wild" vs. "in cultivation" distinction for the threat classification of plants, but not for mites or other animals. It would be a little better to classify the mite as "Nationally Critical in the wild", but it is just listed as "Nationally Critical" simpliciter, because that distinction doesn't exist for animals ...
From: JF Mate <aphodiinaemate at gmail.com>
To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
Sent: Thursday, 28 June 2012 8:35 AM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] when is a common species critically endangered?
Since cultivated Clianthus maximus is maintained by humans the mite is
in effect living in an anthropogenic habitat. Same goes for pests on
many cultivated plants with small or nonexistant wild populations
(Gingko, Avocado, Coffee...). I can´t see the difference between this
an associated faunas of Atta nests.
Feral cats in Europe are replacement predators (native wild cat
populations are much reduced). Domesticated cats are subsidized
hunters, nothing natural about them. Everywhere else they are just
invasives. My two cents.
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