Biodiversity data from: The mass extinction debt of the Anthropocene

Christopher Spalding & Pincelli Hull
To make sense of our present biodiversity crises, the modern rate of species extinctions is commonly compared to a benchmark, or “background,” rate derived from the fossil record. These estimates are critical for bounding the scale of modern diversity loss, but have yet to account for the fundamental structure of extinction rates through time. Namely, a substantial fraction of extinctions within the fossil record occur within relatively short-lived extinction pulses, and not during intervals characterized...
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