We hypothesized that peripheral populations, being mostly small and remote, are more prone to extinction than non-peripheral populations within the same region. Between 1863 and 1993, 204 bird species were recorded as breeders in Israel. Of the 185 species that bred regularly, 14 species have become extinct and 58 species are threatened. Many breeding species of Israel are at the periphery of their distribution, and most of these are at their southern periphery. The extinct species were significantly more peripheral than others, and the 113 non-threatened species are significantly less peripheral than others. Most extinct species are raptors and waterfowl, and their extinction is related to human pressure. However, even within these groups extremely peripheral species tend to become extinct, whereas less peripheral species tend to persist. We conclude that because peripheral populations are inherently vulnerable, they are also more sensitive to human pressure.
|Original language||American English|
|Number of pages||23|
|Journal||Israel Journal of Zoology|
|State||Published - 1996|