American Malacological Society President’s Symposium: Molluscan Conservation
Kenneth A. Hayes (Director of Pacific Center for Molecular Biodiversity Bishop Museum)
Confirmed keynote speaker Marine:
Dr. Tricia Goulding, Smithsonian (marine molluscs in mangrove systems)
Potential KeyNote Speaker Terrestrial:
Dr. Dinarte Teixeira: Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation IP-RAM, Portugal
Potential KeyNote Speaker Freshwater:
Dr. Alexandra Zieritz, University of Nottingham, UK
Dr. Alexandra Zieritz holding freshwater mussel - Hyriopsis bialata, a rare, endangered mussel in Malaysia.
Pollution and climate change are destroying mangrove habitats at ana alarming rate.
Mangrove forests, sever as the transition between marine and terrestrial environments, and are some of the most critical coastal ecosystems globally. They harbor diverse malacofaunal assemblages that are threatened with extinction along with the other services these valuable systems provide. (Photo credits: Tricia Goulding)
Native Hawaiian succineid, one of the more than 750 of land snails in the archipelago threatened with extinction as non-native species and climate change continue to unabated.
Abstract: The synergistic impacts of centuries of unchecked habitat destruction, invasive species, and climate change continue to exacerbate extinction rates among all taxonomic groups, bringing ecosystems to tipping point. As we quickly approach the mid-way point of the 21st century we find ourselves confronting the most serious impacts of biodiversity loss and climate change. Molluscs, found across marine, terrestrial, and freshwater habitats, have suffered substantial losses, with an estimated 1032 species extinctions since 1500 – the year International Union for Conservation of Nature uses as the starting point for counting extinctions. Although this is less than 1.4% of the total described number of molluscs (~76,000), it is probably a dramatic underestimate, with some studies indicating the numbers may be greater than 5,000 species.
This symposium on Molluscan Conservation will feature speakers from across habitats and molluscan classes providing an updated picture of molluscan biodiversity in the Anthropocene and highlight the research efforts to understand and mitigate the decline among molluscs.