Where the threatened wild things are

These global biodiversity maps – the most detailed yet – show that hotspots of diversity and threat don't always go hand in hand. Mammals, for instance, are most diverse in the upper Amazon basin and the foothills of the Andes, yet extinction threats are highest in Borneo, Sumatra and the Malay Peninsula – where habitat is being destroyed at an alarming rate.

Use the controls at top right to explore explore the diversity threatened by what some call the Earth's sixth mass extinction. Humanity takes the blame, eliminating species at about 1000 times the natural rate.

Source: BiodiversityMapping.org/IUCN/BirdLife International/NatureServe; maps by Peter Aldhous, 29 May 2014

Number of species:

Lowspectral   High