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Vaquita porpoise declared extinct before 2020?
The vaquita porpoise (Phocoena sinus) is the most endangered cetacean species, with recent estimates of population around 30 individuals. The species is located exclusively in the Gulf of California, limiting its potential habitats, and has been decimated by fishermen who employ highly effective gillnets to catch the totoaba fish, also critically endangered and highly valued in Chinese markets.
Mexico has declared bans on gill netting in an attempt to save the vaquita, but populations have continued to decline.
Conservationists are hoping to develop a plan to bring some vaquitas into captivity as a last-ditch attempt to save the species, but by the time such a plan is implemented, it may be too late.
Will the vaquita be declared extinct before 2020?
This question will resolve as positive if the first IUCN Red List update published after January 1, 2020 lists Phocoena sinus as extinct.
Metaculus help: Predicting
Predictions are the heart of Metaculus. Predicting is how you contribute to the wisdom of the crowd, and how you earn points and build up your personal Metaculus track record.
The basics of predicting are very simple: move the slider to best match the likelihood of the outcome, and click predict. You can predict as often as you want, and you're encouraged to change your mind when new information becomes available. With tachyons you'll even be able to go back in time and backdate your prediction to maximize your points.
The displayed score is split into current points and total points. Current points show how much your prediction is worth now, whereas total points show the combined worth of all of your predictions over the lifetime of the question. The scoring details are available on the FAQ.
Note: this question resolved before its original close time. All of your predictions came after the resolution, so you did not gain (or lose) any points for it.
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Metaculus help: Community Stats
Use the community stats to get a better sense of the community consensus (or lack thereof) for this question. Sometimes people have wildly different ideas about the likely outcomes, and sometimes people are in close agreement. There are even times when the community seems very certain of uncertainty, like when everyone agrees that event is only 50% likely to happen.
When you make a prediction, check the community stats to see where you land. If your prediction is an outlier, might there be something you're overlooking that others have seen? Or do you have special insight that others are lacking? Either way, it might be a good idea to join the discussion in the comments.