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Risks to Global Primate Diversity from Climate Change and Other Pressures

GAFFNEY, LIAM,ROBERT (2011) Risks to Global Primate Diversity from Climate Change and Other Pressures. Masters thesis, Durham University.

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Primate species are widely threatened from the impact of deforestation and other human activities, with many species already facing high risk of extinction. Climate change poses an additional threat to the world's biota. However, the extent to which future climate change poses a risk to primates in conjunction with the other threats remains largely unclear. This study will utilise bioclimate models in order to assess the potential changes in primate species richness under future climate change scenarios. These results will then be combined with country-level data on forest loss and projected increases in human populations, to establish the potential synergy between these drivers of environmental change and quantify the regions facing the greatest risks to primate species diversity. The response of primate species richness to future climate change was shown to vary between regions and to depend upon the climate model and emissions scenario used. Madagascar generally displayed the largest increase in suitable climate, whereas on the whole, African primates may potentially be impacted the most from adverse climate change. The greatest risk to primate species from the correlating threats of adverse climate change, forest loss and human population pressure, was found in countries of north-west Africa and Asia, in particular the south-east. The results demonstrate the complexity of the link between climate and biodiversity and highlight the importance of the choice of model used to assess climate change impacts on biodiversity. In addition, it is clear that there is a need for urgent conservation measures to be adopted in high risk regions in order to combat threats from climate change to already fragile primate populations.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Science
Keywords:"climate change impacts";"biodiversity loss";"primates";"environmental change";"risks to global primate diversity";"forest loss";"population pressure"
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Science > Biological and Biomedical Sciences, School of
Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Geography, Department of
Thesis Date:2011
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:11 Aug 2011 10:19

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