Biodiversity and Conservation Biology project

Biodiversity and Conservation Biology project - FALL 2010...

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FALL 2010 BISC 120 Biodiversity and Conservation Biology Project (November 30 – December 3) INTRODUCTION It is clear that among the major global problems we face today are global warming, the rapid depletion of our natural resources, the deterioration of biodiversity, and exploitation of our biological resources. The world is losing species and habitats at an extremely rapid rate, now more than ever in the human history. Some environmentalists and ecologists estimate 130 species are lost every day. Along with the loss of species, habitats are being altered, fragmented, and lost for agriculture use and human habitation as well as for natural resource extraction. Along with the direct effects of habitat alteration, such things as agricultural runoff, siltation, and pollution from different land use patterns severely impact habitats. The maintenance of our quality of life or, even the achievement of a decent standard of living, as in underdeveloped nations, depends on our ability to make the correct decisions on the long-term sustainability of resource use. These decisions must be made within a holistic framework, where considerations of the physical and biological properties of systems are evaluated within the social and economic context of a community. Conservation biology is the branch of ecology and evolutionary biology that deals with the preservation and management of biodiversity (all species on this planet and their interactions with one another.) It is a discipline that is emerging rapidly as a result of the accelerating deterioration of natural systems and the worldwide epidemic of species extinctions. Its goal is to find ways to conserve species, habitats, landscapes and ecosystems as quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively. PURPOSE This project is designed for you to learn about global warming (the consequence of deforestation and fossil fuel usage) and its effect on all species on Earth and to encourage an interdisciplinary approach to conservation and sustainable development that might slow down global warming and loss of species and habitats. We would like to promote an understanding of conservation ecology and provide a forum for awareness and involvement in local and, to some degree, global conservation issues. These presentations will also allow you to share your knowledge and experiences with your fellow students. CHOOSING A TOPIC Find a partner in your lab section and discuss with her/him what you are interested in so you can do some research on topics you both like. After you choose your topic you need to have it approved by your TA. Sample topics include but are not limited to: conservation of a threatened or endangered species (focus on just one species, e.g. polar bears, emperor penguins, frogs, pandas); the pet trade and its impact on natural populations;
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This note was uploaded on 09/21/2010 for the course BIO 120 at USC.

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Biodiversity and Conservation Biology project - FALL 2010...

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