Platypuses said to be on the 'brink of extinction'
This just about "fears" and what "could happen". There is nothing factual below. The journal article is "A stitch in time – Synergistic impacts to platypus metapopulation extinction risk". It is pure armchair modelling based on extensive guesses. There was no actual research involved. No feet were muddied.
And the assumptions are all one-sided. What if some features of modern environments are actually helpful to the platypus? There are plenty of examples of modernity helping a species. The "bin chickens" (Ibises) are known to most Brisbane people
It seems to me that dams might actually be helpful to the platypus. They give it a big choice of what water level they want to feed and breed at. But that would never have occurred to our modellers.
And the major scare the modelling was based on was global warming. What if there is no global warming? There has certainly been very little warming for the last century or so
This whole article is just a tawdry attempt to get something into the journals by using conventional scares. The journal editors were negligent in publishing something so insubstantial
Australia's beloved platypus is now feared to be on the 'brink of extinction'. Researchers at the University of New South Wales say the number of platypuses in the wild could fall by 66 per cent by 2070 because of climate change and other threats.
Researchers said soaring temperatures across the country, the intense drought and land clearing are all contributing to the species' decline.
Richard Kingsford, director for UNSW's Centre for Ecosystem Science said the future for the animal was 'grim'.
'This is impacting their ability to survive during these extended dry periods and increased demand for water,' Mr Kingsford said in the journal article, Biological Conservation, The Age reported.
'If we lost the platypus from Australian rivers, you would say, 'What sort of government policies or care allow that to happen?''
Gilad Bino, the study's lead author said the threat of climate change could affect the platypus's ability to repopulate, noting they could face 'extinction'.
'We are not monitoring what we assume to be a common species. And then we may wake up and realise it's too late,' Dr Bino said.
The platypus is listed as 'near-threatened' under the IUCN Red List of threatened species but Dr Bino says the government needs to assess how much the animal is at risk.
The study's researchers said in order to prevent total extinction the platypus' habitat would need to be managed.
The Victorian Environment Department said they were working with the federal government over whether the platypus' status needed to be changed to 'threatened'.
NSW said they recognised issues such as the drought could be placing the platypus 'at risk'.
Platypuses live in freshwater areas and are found along the east coast and southeast coast of Australia.