Extinctions and animal species at risk

Posted to Infographics  |  Tags: , ,  |  Nathan Yau

Data journalist Anna Flagg for ProPublica reported on animal species at higher risk of extinction.

Animal species are going extinct anywhere from 100 to 1,000 times the rates that would be expected under natural conditions. According to Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction and other recent studies, the increase results from a variety of human-caused effects including climate change, habitat destruction, and species displacement. Today’s extinction rates rival those during the mass extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

The data has an interesting organization. Think back to sixth-grade science and remember that animals are grouped in a hierarchy of order, family, genus, and species. This hierarchy is represented with horizontal bars on the bottom, vertical line pointers, vertical bars, and elements within each bar, respectively.

Once you get down to the genus level (vertical bars), the interactive gets kind of tough to use unless you search for a specific species. I want some filters or some breakout sections to highlight spots to look at. However, as a tool for those closer to the challenge, this seems like it could be quite useful.

Favorites

Years You Have Left to Live, Probably

The individual data points of life are much less predictable than the average. Here’s a simulation that shows you how much time is left on the clock.

Visualizing the Uncertainty in Data

Data is an abstraction, and it’s impossible to encapsulate everything it represents in real life. So there is uncertainty. Here are ways to visualize the uncertainty.

The Most Unisex Names in US History

Moving on from the most trendy names in US history, …

Where People Run in Major Cities

There are many exercise apps that allow you to keep …