Multiple drivers of decline in the global status of freshwater crayfish (Decapoda: Astacidea)

Richman, N.I. and Bohm, M. and Adams, S.B. and Alvarez, F. and Bergey, E.A. and Bunn, J.S.J. and Burnham, Q. and Cordeiro, J. and Coughran, J. and Crandall, K.A. and Dawkins, K.L. and DiStefano, R.J. and Doran, N.E. and Edsman, L. and Eversole, A.G. and Fureder, L. and Furse, J.M. and Gherardi, F. and Hamr, P. and Holdich, D.M. and Horwitz, P. and Johnston, K. and Jones, C.M. and Jones, J.P.G. and Jones, R.L. and Jones, T.G. and Kawai, T. and Lawler, S. and Lopez-Mejia, M. and Miller, R.M. and Padraza-Lara, C. and Reynolds, J.D. and Richardson, A.M.M. and Schultz, M.B. and Schuster, G.A. and Sibley, P.J. and Souty-Grosset, C. and Taylor, C.A. and Thoma, R.F. and Walls, J. and Walsh, T.S. and Collen, B. (2015) Multiple drivers of decline in the global status of freshwater crayfish (Decapoda: Astacidea). Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 370 (1662). DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0060

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Rates of biodiversity loss are higher in freshwater ecosystems than in most terrestrial or marine ecosystems, making freshwater conservation a priority. However, prioritization methods are impeded by insufficient knowledge on the distribution and conservation status of freshwater taxa, particularly invertebrates. We evaluated the extinction risk of the world's 590 freshwater crayfish species using the IUCN Categories and Criteria and found 32% of all species are threatened with extinction. The level of extinction risk differed between families, with proportionally more threatened species in the Parastacidae and Astacidae than in the Cambaridae. Four described species were Extinct and 21% were assessed as Data Deficient. There was geographical variation in the dominant threats affecting the main centres of crayfish diversity. The majority of threatened US and Mexican species face threats associated with urban development, pollution, damming and water management. Conversely, the majority of Australian threatened species are affected by climate change, harvesting, agriculture and invasive species. Only a small proportion of crayfish are found within the boundaries of protected areas, suggesting that alternative means of long-term protection will be required. Our study highlights many of the significant challenges yet to come for freshwater biodiversity unless conservation planning shifts from a reactive to proactive approach.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Research Publications
Departments: College of Natural Sciences > School of Environment, Natural Resources and Geography
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2015 03:06
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2015 02:50
ISSN: 0962–8436
URI: http://e.bangor.ac.uk/id/eprint/3425
Identification Number: DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0060
Publisher: The Royal Society
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