Dynamics of Species Extinction and Recovery in Multi-Trophic Aquatic Systems
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The current rate of species extinction is higher than at any other time in Earth’s history. Despite our understanding of the causes and consequences of extinction and the development of numerous species conservation plans, it is surprising how little we know about the dynamics of extinction and recovery. Here, I explore the dynamics of population extinction and recovery across a range of meio-invertebrate species embedded in aquatic multi-trophic communities under external pressure. My results indicate that external mortality frequency has a negative impact on the dynamics of population extinction and recovery and suggest that it may be possible to predict patterns of population extinction from patterns of population growth as well as patterns of recovery from patterns of population collapse. My findings provide a valuable empirical basis from which we may increase our understanding of the factors influencing extinction risk and recovery potential to develop sustainable management strategies.