8.7 Million Species on Earth and Counting

2013-03-22T15:08:58+00:00 August 23, 2011|

Kiwa hirsuta, also dubbed the "yeti crab" for its silky blond setae that resembles fur, was one of some 6,000 new species discovered by Census of Marine Life scientists. This interesting looking crustacean was discovered in 2005 in the South Pacific. Credit: A. Fifis/IFREMER.

Census of Marine Life Scientists Announce New Estimated Number of Species on Earth

Eight million, seven hundred thousand species (give or take 1.3 million).

That is a new, estimated total number of species on Earth — the most precise calculation ever offered — with 6.5 million species found on land and 2.2 million (about 25 percent of the total) dwelling in the ocean depths.

Announced today, August 23, 2011,  by Census of Marine Life scientists, the figure is based on an innovative, validated analytical technique that dramatically narrows the range of previous estimates. Until now, the number of species on Earth was said to fall somewhere between 3 million and 100 million. Furthermore, the study, published today by PLoS Biology, says a staggering 86% of all species on land and 91% of those in the seas have yet to be discovered, described and catalogued.

To read the full release and for more information, please see: http://www.comlsecretariat.org/?p=5778.