The extinction of species is natural. However, species now go extinct at a rate 1000 times the natural background rate. The rate is so high, we are in the midst of the 6th mass extinction event, the first to be caused by a single species rather than a 'natural' event like the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. Extinctions have followed us everywhere since our spread out of Africa. On every continent we reached, species went extinct.

Recent extinctions include the Chinese river dolphin and the Christmas Island pipistrelle. They didn't grab many headlines and no bells tolled for them at the end, but each extinction has reverberations throughout the ecosystem from which it has vanished. A theme of my blog is that everything is connected, and species extinctions are like jenga - if you remove one block the others start to teeter, loosening some of the other blocks and making them easier to remove.

This extinction crisis is going largely unnoticed, so much so that one scientist stated "we are sleepwalking into mass extinction". My mission is to help to change that.