Wild Species and Biodiversity The value of wild species Saving wild species Biodiversity and its decline Protecting biodiversity
Appreciating the Worth of Diversity The worth ($) of plant and animal diversity in terms of goods and services. Factors that contribute to a reduction in plant and animal diversity. Understanding the “costs” of losing plant and animal diversity. Programs to protect biodiversity.
Puffin Project: Seabird Restoration Project of the Audubon Society
The Value of Wild Species Biological wealth Two kinds of value Sources for agriculture, forestry, aquaculture, and animal husbandry Sources for medicine Recreational, aesthetic, and scientific value Value for their own sake
Biological Wealth = $38 Trillion/year Gas, climate, and water regulation Water supply Erosion control Soil formation Pollination
Biological Wealth = $38 Trillion/year Biological control Food production Recreation Raw materials Nutrient cycling Waste treatment
Two Kinds of Value Instrumental: beneficial to humans –Sources for agriculture, forestry, aquaculture, and animal husbandry –Recreational, aesthetic, and scientific value –Sources of medicine Intrinsic: value for its own sake
Source for Agriculture: Wild or Cultivated? Highly adaptable to changing environments Have numerous traits for resistance Lack genetic vigor
Source for Agriculture: Wild or Cultivated? High degree of genetic diversity Represents the genetic bank Need highly controlled environmental conditions
Sources of Medicine: Table 10-1 Vincristine from rosy periwinkle cures leukemia. Capoten from the venom of the Brazilian viper controls high blood pressure. Taxol from the bark of the pacific yew used to treat ovarian, breast, and small-cell cancers.
Recreational, Aesthetic, and Scientific Value (see Figure 10-4) Ecotourism: largest foreign exchange- generating enterprise in many developing countries $104 billion spent on wildlife-related recreation $31 billion spent to observe, feed, or photograph wildlife
Value for Their Own Sake Spiritual: giving divine recognition to selected species Religious: association between wild things and a creator Cultural: animal rights, American Indians
Saving Wild Species Game animals in the United States Protecting endangered species
Past Wildlife Management Problems Restoring the numbers of many game animals, e.g., deer, elk, turkey. Passing laws to control the collection and commercial exploitation of wildlife. Poaching and over-hunting.
Contemporary Wildlife Management Problems Road-killed animals Population explosion of urban wildlife Lack of natural predators Wildlife as vectors for certain diseases Pet predation by coyotes Changed societal attitudes towards animals
Acts Protecting Endangered Species (see Figure 10-8) Lacey Act: forbids interstate commerce of illegally killed wildlife Endangered Species Act (ESA): protects endangered and threatened species (Table 10-3) –Total endangered U.S. species = 1,001 (402 animals, 599 plants) –Threatened U.S. species = 300 (154 animals, 146 plants)
Strengths or Weaknesses of Endangered Species Act? The need for official recognition Control over commercial exploitation of endangered species Government controls on development in critical habitats Recovery programs Habitat conservation plan (HCP)
Case Histories Peregrine falcon Whooping crane Spotted owl Klamath river and coho salmon
Peregrine Falcon Restoration Program Hacking involves placing 4-5 five-week-old peregrine chicks in an artificial structure on a cliff face, tower, or building. The birds are cared for by human hack site attendants until released for fledging when they are 42-45 days old. Hacking success depends on safety from predators, minimal human disturbance, and the presence of sufficient prey. The desired result of this effort is the return of hacked birds to the general area of the hack site as breeding adults, helping to reestablish a breeding population.
Where Peregrine Falcons Live! Map constructed by Clark E. Adams
Biodiversity and Its Decline The decline in biodiversity Reasons for the decline Consequences of losing biodiversity
Overuse Trafficking in wildlife and products derived from wild species - $12 billion/year –90% decline in rhinos –1.6 tons of tiger bones = 340 tigers –Parrot smuggling: 40 of 330 species face extinction
Consequences of Losing Biodiversity: The Plane Analogy The whole plane is an ecosystem. There are many different parts (species) in the jet plane ecosystem. How does removal of one or more species affect ecosystem structure or function?
Protecting Biodiversity International developments Stewardship concerns
International Steps to Protect Biodiversity “Red List of Threatened Species” –11,167 species of plant and animals Convention on trade in endangered species (CITES) –Focuses on trade in wildlife and wildlife parts Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD)
International Steps to Protect Biodiversity Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) –Stepping up war on invasive species –Access to genetic resources –Stem tide of deforestations –Formulating a strategic plan through 2010
International Steps to Protect Biodiversity Convention on biological diversity –Focuses on conserving biological diversity worldwide –Does not yet have the support of the United States
Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund Sponsors: World Bank, Conservation International, and the Global Environment Facility –Fund = $150 million for developing countries –Protect biodiversity “hotspots”
Biodiversity Hotspots 60% of the biodiversity is located on just 1.4% of the Earth’s land surface.
Stewardship Concerns Managing and protecting something you DO NOT own. Involves: –Wisdom –Values
The Wisdom of Stewardship Reforming policies that lead to declines in biodiversity Addressing the needs of people whose livelihood is derived from exploiting wild species
The Wisdom of Stewardship Practicing conservation at the landscape level Promoting more research on biodiversity
The Values of Stewardship Manage or mine the resource? Human perceptions of their relationships to the natural world. –Deep ecology: we are part of the Earth and not separate from it –Religious faiths