About one-fifth of all reptile species, including crocodiles and turtles, are at risk of extinction. That’s the conclusion of a major new study published in the journal Nature. Multiple factors are threatening reptiles, including deforestation, urban encroachment, hunting and the climate emergency. The zoologist Bruce Young of NatureServe co-led the study.
Bruce Young: “Reptiles represent a unique evolutionary heritage on the tree of life. And if all of those 20% of reptiles that are threatened today go extinct, we will lose a cumulation of 15 billion years of evolution that’s led to these fascinating creatures that we see around us today.”