Goodbye, little ones..
It's World Water Day today, a day to think about how we consume water in terms of global sustainability. I consider clean water access to be directly correlated to climate change so it was sad news to learn that the copper striped blue-tailed skink (Emoia impair), a native Hawaiian lizard species, has just been declared extinct by the United States Geological Survey.
"No other landscape in these United States has been more impacted by extinction events and species invasions in historic times than the Hawaiian Islands, with as yet unknown long-term cascading consequences to the ecosystem. Today we close the book on one more animal that is unlikely to ever be re-established in this fragile island home," states Marcia McNutt, a U.S. Geological Survey director.
The Emoia impair was last seen on Kauai about 40 years ago which means it may be a victim of "cryptic extinction," which is when a species is confused with another similar one so that their extinction isn't noticed until well after they have disappeared.
Related: My Huffington Post piece on climate change and clean water access in Tanzania.