I mentioned the use of species-area relationships to estimate rates of species loss several times since the start of the semester. I mentioned at least once, but probably only once, endemic area relationships. There's a new paper in Nature Communications that compares the two approaches using global data sets. I've only read the abstract, but I'm pretty sure this paper will play a prominent role in lectures the next time I give this course.
On the decline of biodiversity due to area loss
Petr Keil, David Storch, and Walter Jetz
Predictions of how different facets of biodiversity decline with habitat loss are broadly needed, yet challenging. Here we provide theory and a global empirical evaluation to address this challenge. We show that extinction estimates based on endemics-area and backward species-area relationships are complementary, and the crucial difference comprises the geometry of area loss. Across three taxa on four continents, the relative loss of species, and of phylogenetic and functional diversity, is highest when habitable area disappears inward from the edge of a region, lower when it disappears from the centre outwards, and lowest when area is lost at random. In inward destruction, species loss is almost proportional to area loss, although the decline in phylogenetic and functional diversity is less severe. These trends are explained by the geometry of species ranges and the shape of phylogenetic and functional trees, which may allow baseline predictions of biodiversity decline for underexplored taxa.
Nature Communications 6, Article number 8837. doi: 10.1038/ncomms9837