- Animals feared extinct are often rediscovered.
- Conservation efforts too often focus on animals that will never be found again.
- Knowing the factors that cause extinction are important in assessing the likelihood of success in saving threatened species.
Australian biologists say animals that have been feared extinct are often rediscovered, and conservation efforts too often focus on creatures that will never be found again.
A study by the University of Queensland's Diana Fisher and Simon Blomberg appears in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
They examined 187 species of mammal that have been thought to have become extinct since 1500, and found 67 have since been rediscovered.
Fisher says the study found mammals whose habitats have been partly destroyed are the most likely to be found again.
Mammals thought to have been killed off by introduced predators, disease, or human hunting are least likely to be rediscovered.
Fisher says knowing the factors that cause extinction are important in assessing the likelihood of success in saving threatened species.