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How Scientists Determine if a Type of Animal Has Gone Extinct

GENEVA: Scientists use a careful process to decide if an animal species is no longer there. They look at many things to make this decision:

How Scientists Determine if a Type of Animal Has Gone Extinct

1) Historical data: Scientists study old records, like observations and museum specimens, to see if the species was around in the past.

2) Field survey: Scientists go to where the animals used to live to see if any are still there. They use cameras, traps, DNA analysis, and expert observations.

3) Population: Knowing how many animals are left is important. If no one sees a species for a long time, it might mean it’s gone.

4) Habitat Assessment: Checking the places where animals live is vital. If their homes are destroyed or changed too much, it can mean the species won’t survive.

5) (IUCN) Red List Criteria: An organization called the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has rules to decide if a species is in danger. If a species meets certain rules, it can be called endangered.

6) Expert Consensus: Experts in biodiversity, ecology, and conservation biology work together to decide if a species is extinct. They review all the information and agree on the status.

7) Time Period: Scientists say a species is extinct when they are pretty sure the last one has died, and there’s no chance it will come back.

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