A Forest Without Elephants: Can We Save One of Earth s Iconic Species?

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1 Chapter 11: Preserving Biodiversity A Forest Without Elephants: Can We Save One of Earth s Iconic Species? Guiding Question 1: What are the major causes of species endangerment and extinction today? Start on: p. 184 (start of chapter) End on: p. 188 (ends just before "There are multiple approaches to species conservation.") 11.1 The Main Threats to Biodiversity Today Come From Humans 11.2 Conservation Designations Conservation biology Threatened species Keystone species Conservation biology is the science of preserving biodiversity. In general, conservation biologists agree that biodiversity all over the world faces five main threats: overexploitation, pollution, climate change, invasive species, and the number one cause habitat destruction and fragmentation. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) maintains the Red List of Threatened Species, which identifies the conservation status of species worldwide. Status categories reflect extinction risk, and range from extinct to least concern. Define the term species endangerment. Define the term extinction. Identify the major causes of species endangerment and extinction.

2 Guiding Question 2: How do single-species conservation programs compare to ecosystembased approaches? Start on: p. 188 (starts at "There are multiple approaches to species conservation.") End on: p. 190 (ends just before "National laws and international treaties aid in species ") 11.3 Single-species Approach 11.4 Species Conservation: An Ecosystem Approach Single-species approach Flagship species Ecosystem approach Ecosystem restoration Remediation Indicator species Landscape conservation Experts have long debated how to best protect any given species or ecosystem. Early programs often took the single-species approach: They singled out well-known animals known as flagship species and focused on the specific threats those individual species faced, using a variety of methods, including captive breeding programs to increase population sizes and reintroducing the species to the wild. Such campaigns can give a false impression that we are saving many species, however, when in fact habitat destruction continues to decimate the vital habitat that supports innumerable species. This is one reason why many conservationists now support an ecosystem approach. This means identifying entire ecosystems that are at risk and taking steps to restore or rehabilitate them. Define the term single-species conservation. Define the term ecosystem approach. Compare single-species conservation programs to ecosystem-based approaches.

3 Guiding Question 3: What is conservation genetics and how can it contribute to the conservation of species? Start on: p. 190 (starts at "National laws and international treaties aid in species ") End on: p. 191 (ends just before "Such findings have huge implications ") 11.5 Tracking Poachers by Using Conservation Genetics Conservation genetics Conservation genetics is the scientific field that relies on species genetics to inform conservation efforts. Through DNA analysis, conservation biologists can determine the amount of genetic diversity within a population, or the kinship between separate groups i.e., whether they are part of one extended population, or represent distinct populations that don t interbreed or even whether a given population is part of an endangered species. Define the term conservation genetics. Explain how conservation genetics can contribute to the conservation of species.

4 Guiding Question 4: What legal protections do endangered and threatened species have in the United States and internationally? Start on: p. 191 (starts at "Such findings have huge implications ") End on: p. 194 (ends just before "Habitat protection requires local support.") 11.6 Legal Protection for Species Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Endangered Species Act (ESA) A variety of national laws and international treaties (conventions) offer protection for species both inside and outside the protected areas. In the United States there are laws that specifically protect particular groups (e.g., wild horses or eagles) or specific habitats (e.g., wetlands), but the two broadest laws, both passed in the 1970s, are the main federal statutes that protect species. Internationally, there are many treaties, such as the ones mentioned here, that protect habitats or place restrictions on the use or harvesting of species. Describe the legal protections of endangered and threatened species in the United States and internationally.

5 Guiding Question 5: What options are available for financing conservation efforts and what role do consumers play in protecting biodiversity? Start on: p. 194 (starts at "Habitat protection requires local support.") End on: p. 197 (end of chapter) 11.7 Global Protected Areas 11.8 Many Routes to Conservation Protected areas Ecotourism Debt-for-nature swaps Conservation of biodiversity does not have to depend solely on regulations, laws, and treaties. There are other effective approaches to protecting species and their ecosystems. Some of these are market driven (there is financial incentive to pursuing them), while others rely on individuals to voluntarily give of their time and money. These options include ecotourism, valuing ecosystem services, creating land trusts and conservation easements, and by making consumer choices such as not purchasing ivory products or animal skins. Identify the options available for financing conservation efforts. Explain the role that consumers play in protecting biodiversity.

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