Lecture 15 - 3/10/2011 Announcements Tutorial # 3 running...

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Unformatted text preview: 3/10/2011 Announcements Tutorial # 3 running this week Final Exam: – Tuesday April 26, 2-5pm – A-Sc: EX200 – Se – Z: EX100 EX100 Biodiversity Conservation Biology Next Week: March 10, 2011 ENV200H1S – Agriculture, Chapter 8, p.232-247 1 2 Why Should We Care? Outline Value and Importance of Biodiversity Biodiversity – Benefits & Importance (cont’d) – Threats How Preserve Biodiversity Preserve Biodiversity – Conservation Biology 3 Food Security Drugs and Medicines Ecosystem services Maintenance of ecosystem function Biological processes Organisms are interdependent Aesthetic, recreational and Cultural Benefits Environmental Monitoring biomimicry Intrinsic value 4 Recreational, Cultural and Aesthetic Benefits Maintain Ecosystem Function High levels of biodiversity increases Stability resilience: ability to withstand disturbances 5 Ecotourism can be an important form of sustainable economic development. USFWS estimates Americans spend $104 billion annually on wildlife-related recreation. wildlife Cultural diversity inextricably linked to biodiversity. li bi Biophilia (E.O. Wilson): “connections that humans subconsciously seek with the rest of life” Nature deficit disorder (Richard Louv): alienation from Louv): nature may damage childhood development 6 1 3/10/2011 Environmental Monitoring Biomimicry Canaries in the coal mine A healthy environment for wildlife is more likely a healthy environment for people. studies nature’s best ideas and then imitates these designs and processes to solve human problems. Those who are inspired by a model other Th than than Nature, a mistress above all masters, are laboring in vain. - Leonardo Da Vinci 7 8 Intrinsic Value Biomimicry Examples Velcro Gecko tape Speedo swimsuit – shark skin Bumpy whale fins to increase aerodynamics in wind turbines Lotus leave effect – water beads up and picks up surface contaminants value for their own sake The extinction of any species is an irretrievable loss of something of value Because humans have ability to make moral judgments, we also have special judgments we responsibility responsibility toward the natural world, including concern for other species, even those that have no obvious value to anyone 9 10 Extinction Natural Causes of Extinction Fossil Record suggests more than 99% of all species ever in existence are now extinct. Most went extinct before humans arrived. End of Cretaceous - Dinosaurs and 50% of existing genera disappeared. of Permian period - Two-thirds of all Twomarine species and nearly half of all plant and animal families died out. 11 Background extinction Low-level Low Continuous Mass extinction Large number of species lost 5 – 6 times across Earth’s history 12 2 3/10/2011 Extinction Extinct & Endangered Species Death of a life form Natural event Fate of all species 99% of all previous species are extinct Currently accelerated by human activities 100–1000 times natural rate 100– See Fig. 7.6 (p.209 in textbook) 13 14 Threats to Biodiversity Endangered & Threatened Species Endangered species Threats that may lead to extinction Numbers severely reduced Threatened species Declining population Could become endangered Genetic variability severely diminished Natural causes of extinction Habitat destruction: urban sprawl, deforestation, fragmentation Hunting and fishing Commercial products & live specimens Exotic species introduction Diseases Pollution Climate Change 15 16 HumanHuman-Caused Reductions in Biodiversity Human Causes Of Species Endangerment Increasing wealth (based on exploiting the environment) is generating demands on the the environment that cannot continue to be be met in the poorer regions of the world, poverty forces people to adopt subsistence living (e.g. deforestation and over-grazing) that overdestroys critical habitat for other species 17 17 Habitat loss Pollution Invasive species Overexploitation 18 3 3/10/2011 HumanHuman-Caused Reductions in Biodiversity Habitat Loss Destruction, fragmentation, degradation Largest threat to species Why is so much land being altered? Isolated patches often won’t do Worldwide problem Hunting and Fishing OverOver-harvesting of game species. American Passenger Pigeon American Bison Whales Atlantic Cod 19 20 Commercial Harvest Predator and Pest Control Many animal populations have been greatly reduced or exterminated because they are regarded as dangerous to humans or livestock. Birds, coyotes, wolves, prairie dogs Zoos, laboratories, pet stores Many die in transit 40+ parrot species in trouble pa Plants also collected Wildlife smuggling 21 22 Endangered Species Consumption Endangered Species Parts 23 Whale/dolphin meat Shark fins bushmeat 24 4 3/10/2011 Invasive Species Zebra Mussels Foreign species that cause economic or environmental harm Often introduced by humans Invasive species Introduced from ballast water into Great Lakes Cluster in high density Eat other species food Cost U.S. $5 billion per year 25 26 Examples of Invasive Species of Concern Pollution Asian Long-horned Beetle LongAsian Carp Acid precipitation Ozone depletion Climate change Direct or indirect poisoning Altered habitat from chemicals 27 28 Conservation Biology Study of human impacts on organisms Development of ways to protect biodiversity Two techniques In situ conservation: preserving biodiversity in nature on nature, on site conservation, i.e. protecting or protecting rehabilitating rehabilitating sufficiently large areas of habitat to alleviate stressors impinging on populations Ex situ conservation: conserving biodiversity in humanhuman-controlled settings, captive breeding programs in zoos, aquaria, aviaries, botanical gardens and/or gene banks 29 Conserving Species Zoos, aquaria, botanical gardens Collecting eggs, seeds Captive breeding Expensive Difficult May not work 30 5 3/10/2011 California Condor Reintroducing Species In 1987, the last remaining 22 wild condors was taken into captivity. As of November 2010, there are 381 condors known to be living, including 192 in the wild. Significant concerns as to the genetic status of the population: All condors alive today are descended from only 14 birds forming three highly inbred clans. The California Condor conservation project is the most expensive species conservation project in United States history, costing over $35 million Success? 31 32 Ex situ Pros & Cons Seed Banks Ultimate goal of captive-breeding captiveprograms One in ten successful Must determine Why species was in trouble If trouble will reoccur If suitable habitat remains Ex situ advantages Opportunities for scientific studies Public education Selective mating to maximize genetic variability variability Seed collections 100+ worldwide Norway – 4.5 million samples (02/2008) Kept at low temperatures Disadvantages Some can’t be stored Expensive Stopping natural selection Ex situ disadvantages Expensive Lose of wild behaviour, including hunting and foraging strategies, migration routes Lack of natural selection 33 34 Some species act as “umbrellas” for protecting habitat & communties In situ Conservation Protected areas Rehabilitate and restore degraded ecosystems ecosystems Reasonably easy to raise funds for mega-fauna megaconservation projects There is a argument that focusing on habitat protection for megafauna automatically protects habitat for numerous other, less charismatic species species. 35 E.g. E.g. In February 2008, a federal judge reinforced a US Fish & Wildlife Service decision to designate 8,600,000 acres (34,800 km2) in Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico as critical habitat for the spotted owl, despite challenges by loggers, cattle ranchers and developers 36 6 3/10/2011 MacArthur and Wilson’s Theory of Island Biogeography InIn-situ Considerations 1. Distant islands support fewer species than nearshore islands (distance effect) Size Shape Cost location 2. Larger islands support more species than small islands 3. Larger islands have lower extinction rates 37 As we fragment habitat (i.e. as we leave small ‘islands’ of undisturbed habitat in a sea of disturbance), we will lose species as the “islands” fall below the minimum viable area (MVA). 38 Not only size, but shape is important! Swan Hill, AB 40 7 ...
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