Holocene extinction, Ongoing extinction event caused by human activity.
The Holocene extinction, otherwise referred to as the sixth mass extinction or Anthropocene extinction, is an ongoing extinction event of species during the present Holocene epoch (with the more recent time sometimes called Anthropocene) as a result of human activity. The included extinctions span numerous families of plants and animals, including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fishes and invertebrates. With widespread degradation of highly biodiverse habitats such as coral reefs and rainforests, as well as other areas, the vast majority of these extinctions are thought to be undocumented, as the species are undiscovered at the time of their extinction, or no one has yet discovered their extinction. The current rate of extinction of species is estimated at 100 to 1,000 times higher than natural background extinction rates.The Holocene extinction includes the disappearance of large land animals known as megafauna, starting at the end of the last glacial period. Megafauna outside of the African mainland, which did not evolve alongside humans, proved highly sensitive to the introduction of new predation, and many died out shortly after early humans began spreading and hunting across the Earth (many African species have also gone extinct in the Holocene, but – with few exceptions – megafauna of the mainland was largely unaffected until a few hundred years ago).
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