Presentation on theme: "Threats to Biodiversity Victoria Bone Stefanie Hoffer Kim Stauffer."— Presentation transcript:
Threats to Biodiversity Victoria Bone Stefanie Hoffer Kim Stauffer
Biodiversity The variety of life, in genes and species, that inhabit the ecosystems of the earth Important because: Greater variety of crops Natural sustainability Recovery from disasters Ecosystem services Biological resources Social benefits
Biodiversity Threats: Human Disreguard/Carelessness: Pollution, Overhunting, Invasive Species Population Growth Biggest threats to biodiversity within an ecosystem deal with the elimination of a keystone species
Invasive Species non-native to the ecosystem whose introduction causes economic or environmental harm or harm to human health Second only to climate change in terms of ubiquity Implicated in the extinction of many species Introduced by human involvement primarily (ex., soil with a population of native insects to another country) Also introduced by nature (ex., flood carries microbial to another ecosystem) http://www.fwi.co.uk/blogs/rural-life/2007/03/hop-to-it.html
Invasive Species Impact in many ways: Direct mechanisms (ex., competing for same food resource in the environment) Indirect mechanisms (ex., a new plant creates cover and enables prey to hide from predator, skewing the food pyramid) Usually reach much higher densities in their new areas than they do in their native habitat http://sports.espn.go.com/rpm/nascar/cup/columns/story?columnist=mcgee_ryan&i d=3461697
Impact of Bufo marinus Since toxins do not leach in lethal quantities from B. marinus eggs into solution, and native tadpoles that die after consuming B. marinus eggs or larvae are not toxic to conspecifics that feed on their carcasses, the mortality of L. ornatus tadpoles observed in experiments 1 and 2 can be attributed to the consumption of Bufo eggs and hatchlings.
Coral Reefs Coral Reefs cover 1% of the world’s oceans 25% of all marine species live in coral reefs And even more species use coral reefs as well, mostly as a nursery for larvae or juvenile stages. Most commercially fished species have a connection to coral reefs
Coral Reefs Coral Reefs can only survive in oceans with clear water and few nutrients at the ideal temperature and depth. Backbone of coral reef is the coral polyp The Coral is a small organism that lives symbiotically with Zooxanthelle A photosynthetic dinoflagellate
Coral Reefs and Pollution Pollution mostly from fertilizers or sewage causes increase of nutrients More nutrients cause increase of algae growth This decreases the oxygen and turbidity The photosynthetic Zooxanthelle cannot get enough light and coral dies
Loss of Biodiversity Loss of biodiversity come from death of coral. Which reduces the number of fish nurseries and amount of food. Many larval organisms die and adults are few. Commercial Importance Reduced numbers of commercially fished fish Loss of possibilities for research
The biggest threat to biodiversity: Loss of Keystone Species A keystone species is a species that has a disproportionate effect on its environment relative to its abundance. Such species affect many other organisms in an ecosystem and help to determine the types and numbers of various others species in a community. The prairie dog has long been hated by farmers and ranchers, but it is vital to many prairie species. This gopher-tortoise is a an endangered keystone species, under protection in Mobile Country, AL.
KRILL Keystone species in the Antarctic zoology.muohio.edu/oris/ZOO121/notes/Envs2003_07.htm
Otters are a keystone species on the Western Coasts of the US because they maintain the kelp beds; their predators are whales, sharks, and humans. http://cbc.amnh.org/crisis/foodweb.html
Mountain Tapirs http://www.ultimateungulate.com/Perissodactyla/Tapirus_pinchaque.html Mountain tapirs, living in the cloud forests of the Andes, are near extinction due to destruction trends in their homes. Hunting, Habitat Destruction, and Encroachment by humans are the most serious threats.
Importance of Conservation of Tapirs Long distance seed dispersal by tapirs increases seed survival and aggregates tropical trees; as tapirs disappear, so do certain plants like the majestic Quindean wax palm, Columbia’s national tree Causes: Coffee Plantations, Opium Fields Forests converted to open grassland with slash and burn for high-altitude cattle farming Overhunting: vulnerable to hunts by loggers, poor families Population Growth
Keystone Predator: Northern Rocky Mountain Gray Wolf Removed from Endangered Species List February 2008, after only having been reintroduced into Idaho and Wyoming in 1984 Currently there are 1500 wolves and 100 breeding pairs
Conservation Success Story? "The wolf population in the Northern Rockies has far exceeded its recovery goal and continues to expand its size and range. States, tribes, conservation groups, federal agencies and citizens of both regions can be proud of their roles in this remarkable conservation success story” -Deputy Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett Republican governor of Idaho, C. L. "Butch" Otter: He hopes to be the first to legally shoot a wolf in Idaho, as soon as the animals lose ESA protection, and wants no more than the federal minimum recovery target of 100. There are 650 now. ( It is now legal, and the 2009 limit was 220 wolves.) A represents three populations of grey wolves. B represents the original populations. http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?vid=10&hid=15&sid=b8130dec-4eb4-42cb-bc31- 2f1384f55ae9%40sessionmgr14&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=a ph&AN=46987264
Conclusion The most major threats to biodiversity: Human Disregard and Carelessness Population Growth: Estimated based on expected human population growth forecast a 7% increase in number of threatened species by 2020, and a 14% increase by 2050!
Hard thing to fix! We must abate growth to conserve biodiversity on a global scale! We must consider very carefully any species we eliminate or insert into an ecosystem!
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