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Posted Fri Dec 18 2009: from University of California - Berkeley via ScienceDaily:
Mammals May Be Nearly Half Way Toward Mass Extinction
If the planet is headed for another mass extinction like the previous five, each of which wiped out more than 75 percent of all species on the planet, then North American mammals are one-fifth to one-half the way there, according to a University of California, Berkeley, and Pennsylvania State University analysis. Many scientists warn that the perfect storm of global warming and environmental degradation -- both the result of human activity is leading to a sixth mass extinction equal to the "Big Five" that have occurred over the past 450 million years, the last of which killed off the dinosaurs 68 million years ago. Yet estimates of how dire the current loss of species is have been hampered by the inability to compare species diversity today with the past.
[Read more stories about: massive die-off, global warming, toxic buildup, sixth extinction]

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