Why do we protect endangered animals?
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12-04-2012, 04:35 AM
Why do we protect endangered animals?
In theory, protecting endangered species is considered as against nature, as that you are fighting against natural selection.
however, sending a sick child to hospital and have an operation to correct some inherited disease is pretty much the same thing, I guess im not go into that.

However, I do like to ask - Why do we protect endangered animals?

This is not like protecting the rainforest, I mean protecting rainforest have positive impact on our life, so we get more oxygen and those craps. However, an endangered specie that is completely useless towards us in every single way - why protecting them?

Like the Giant Panda - these animals stoped evolving minions of years ago due to small changes in their habitat, I consider them lucky enough to live to this very day. Their specie is weak, and without the minions of money every year from outside aids and the government, the giant panda gonna die in a blink. We spent fortunes to maintain the existence of a neglected specie of nature. Why?

In comparison, if those money were sent to the children of where Panda lives (Szechuan Mountain area is still a poverty zone, and peoples life quality were still like pre-modern time, no electricity, gas, or running water, no road for many villages, travel up to 24 hours to reach hospital, walk 3 miles for school etc etc) , for education, transport, medical attention and food aids (many children still suffers from malnutrition especially in protein, and this have devastating effect as that most Szechuanese girls have no boobs and boys possibly have small penis, which I dont care, small penis wont affect my visual happiness). The life quality of the people would greatly improve which have way better actual impact on our society.

Which would you prefer, few dumb bears (despite they are not quiet in bear family) or millions of people gets electricity, running water, good road for transport, education, medical services, food aid, prettier women, etc etc

Im sure anyone would agree to money to the people. However, humanity is so stupid, that actually most of the world would prefer to save the fcking panda. I mean, why?

Easy - Pandas are cute, they are furry and they are cute (yes, but have you seen when panda hunt people? You give a cuddly image to panda but in reality they still hunt other animal and will attack people to take a juicy bite. dont forgot, they still bears... of some kind)

So, this is the awnser of humanity, rather save some fluffy animal than your fellow homo-sapiens race.

I mean what impact does the Giant Panda really do on our life? You just gonna say, oooh, they cute, and thats it... (except Chinese Government sell them to foreign zoo for fortune ofc...)
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12-04-2012, 04:47 AM (This post was last modified: 12-04-2012 07:11 AM by Lilith Pride.)
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
The endangered species protection acts began because humans were directly involved in endangering pecies. Animals like your giant panda were later added in by people in the field of endangered species protection. Some of the earlier animals to be protected for instance were wolves. Wolves were nearly wiped out in the US due to their image of being detrimental to farmers. It took a while before people saw the use in having wolves in forests. The basic reasoning of it is that what started as a way to fix their own mistake, became a humanitarian effort to prevent loss of life.

You should've mentioned the tazmanian devil who is actually being studied in an attempt to prevent their species from being wiped out. There has been a lot of research done in attempting to find a devil whose genetic immunities include a horrible face virus. It's a species who became rather genetically homogulous due to their isolated location. Definitely not the type of animal most people would really want to save.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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12-04-2012, 07:32 AM (This post was last modified: 12-04-2012 07:36 AM by Dom.)
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
It is us who are displacing most animals and plants. By doing so, it is us who are disturbing the eco system, the way nature works together.

Eventually, this will come back to bite us. There is a natural system that has evolved for a very long time and it is fine tuned. Every missing link will affect the whole structure. It is one thing for a species to run out of food because of weather conditions, that is natural selection.

It is another for them to run out of food because we used it for something else or we paved the place where it grew.

Humans are a plague on the planet, they breed like rats and behave like rats and eventually will become totally dependent on synthetic food and materials because we wipe everything natural out.

Used to be the human population was controlled by periodic transmitted diseases that would wipe out vast numbers of the population. But we have conquered nature to a point, enough to make us the worst plague that ever hit the earth.

The problem is that we are getting good at evading natural selection and the rest of life on the planet is not able to compete. So we are slowly but surely destroying ourselves along with our planet.

Perhaps once we are done new species will come and populate the earth and this will start from scratch.

Or, we could evolve and stop breeding like rats and behaving like rats and the human species could continue to live on the planet and so could everything else that is part of the eco system.

Perhaps we will manage to support ourselves without nature, control all aspects we need and discard the rest.

The problem with that is that we make mistakes, we do not know the half of it.

Look for instance at things we did decide to subject totally to human "creation", such as having enough food for all.

Most younger people today do not even know what a tomato tastes like. The tomatoes you can buy commercially (and that even extends to varieties sold in stores to plant in your garden to grow yourself, although they do have more flavor that way) were bred to grow faster, be harder so they don't get injured during picking and mass shipments, respond to artificial application of color (they are red but unripe), grow on bushes rather than vines so space requirements are reduced, are loosely attached to their bush so picking is easy, are resistant to various diseases etc.

What they are not selected for is flavor and nutrition and for the most part people don't even notice anymore, younger people grew up with "card board tomatoes".

If you want to taste an actual tomato, and get the nutrition it provides, you have to buy heirloom seeds that have not been altered and grow them yourself. And, damn are they good!

This hold true for most things. Pork has become flavorless, as have all the other meats. Won't be long and you won't be able to taste the difference between pork and beef. Fruit are flavorless. Most fruit and veggies are naturally sweet - which makes other flavor characteristics that are caused by nutrients palatable. But the way they are mass produced doesn't allow for the sugars to build, and they don't taste good anymore.

Like I said, these are all things we have lost for long enough now so that the younger population is unaware of it.

With the elimination of nature, more and more such losses will sneek into our lives, your children and their children will not know many things that give you pleasure now. The masses will live on flavorless, packaged, enriched foods that are lacking many things that we do not understand now. "Real" food will sell at a prime and be limited to the wealthy. It's already heading that way....

To destroy nature means to give up on many pleasures it provides. Species preservation and living green are feeble attempts at controlling this. What needs to be controlled is procreation, if we stop overrunning the planet like rats then the planet will continue to yield what we need without our having to tinker with everything. Let's face it, we have learned a lot but we don't even understand the simplest things about ourselves, like nutrition.

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12-04-2012, 07:34 AM
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
I suppose because we wipe them out much faster than non human causes.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

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12-04-2012, 08:41 AM (This post was last modified: 13-04-2012 09:02 PM by Hamata k.)
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
We protect them in the hopes that the population grows large enough that we can begin to eat them again.

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12-04-2012, 09:31 AM
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
In my opinion, it's more of the "let our future descendants see such beautiful animals" notion that drives this campaign on. The thought of cute fluffy pandas and majestic tigers vanishing from the planet is scary to some. Conservation allows the species to be protected, a good short term measure, but detrimental in the long run. Human intervention has sometimes led to various species being highly dependent on humans to survive, such as corn and toy dogs.

I agree with you one point. People talk about saving the world when in the first place they cannot even manage care for one another. Here's a relevant George Carlin video:




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12-04-2012, 08:22 PM
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
(12-04-2012 07:32 AM)Dom Wrote:  It is us who are displacing most animals and plants. By doing so, it is us who are disturbing the eco system, the way nature works together.

Eventually, this will come back to bite us. There is a natural system that has evolved for a very long time and it is fine tuned. Every missing link will affect the whole structure. It is one thing for a species to run out of food because of weather conditions, that is natural selection.

It is another for them to run out of food because we used it for something else or we paved the place where it grew.

Humans are a plague on the planet, they breed like rats and behave like rats and eventually will become totally dependent on synthetic food and materials because we wipe everything natural out.

Used to be the human population was controlled by periodic transmitted diseases that would wipe out vast numbers of the population. But we have conquered nature to a point, enough to make us the worst plague that ever hit the earth.

The problem is that we are getting good at evading natural selection and the rest of life on the planet is not able to compete. So we are slowly but surely destroying ourselves along with our planet.

Perhaps once we are done new species will come and populate the earth and this will start from scratch.

Or, we could evolve and stop breeding like rats and behaving like rats and the human species could continue to live on the planet and so could everything else that is part of the eco system.

Perhaps we will manage to support ourselves without nature, control all aspects we need and discard the rest.

The problem with that is that we make mistakes, we do not know the half of it.

Look for instance at things we did decide to subject totally to human "creation", such as having enough food for all.

Most younger people today do not even know what a tomato tastes like. The tomatoes you can buy commercially (and that even extends to varieties sold in stores to plant in your garden to grow yourself, although they do have more flavor that way) were bred to grow faster, be harder so they don't get injured during picking and mass shipments, respond to artificial application of color (they are red but unripe), grow on bushes rather than vines so space requirements are reduced, are loosely attached to their bush so picking is easy, are resistant to various diseases etc.

What they are not selected for is flavor and nutrition and for the most part people don't even notice anymore, younger people grew up with "card board tomatoes".

If you want to taste an actual tomato, and get the nutrition it provides, you have to buy heirloom seeds that have not been altered and grow them yourself. And, damn are they good!

This hold true for most things. Pork has become flavorless, as have all the other meats. Won't be long and you won't be able to taste the difference between pork and beef. Fruit are flavorless. Most fruit and veggies are naturally sweet - which makes other flavor characteristics that are caused by nutrients palatable. But the way they are mass produced doesn't allow for the sugars to build, and they don't taste good anymore.

Like I said, these are all things we have lost for long enough now so that the younger population is unaware of it.

With the elimination of nature, more and more such losses will sneek into our lives, your children and their children will not know many things that give you pleasure now. The masses will live on flavorless, packaged, enriched foods that are lacking many things that we do not understand now. "Real" food will sell at a prime and be limited to the wealthy. It's already heading that way....

To destroy nature means to give up on many pleasures it provides. Species preservation and living green are feeble attempts at controlling this. What needs to be controlled is procreation, if we stop overrunning the planet like rats then the planet will continue to yield what we need without our having to tinker with everything. Let's face it, we have learned a lot but we don't even understand the simplest things about ourselves, like nutrition.
This is a very long post and Im gonna argue with it a bit by bit

Quote:[[[[[It is us who are displacing most animals and plants. By doing so, it is
us who are disturbing the eco system, the way nature works together.



Eventually, this will come back to bite us. There is a natural system
that has evolved for a very long time and it is fine tuned. Every
missing link will affect the whole structure. It is one thing for a
species to run out of food because of weather conditions, that is
natural selection.]]]]]]
Yes, indeed, the Eco-system is very complex however it is not delicate. When one minority under populated specie disappear, it will have no influence at all. Other animal will simply take over its place by expanding their population on the minority specie's food resources, as well as natural predator, which will begin to eat other species rather than the disappeared specie. The missing link in foodchain made a hole in the eco-system, and is now automatically fixed by nature
Now, lets look at the animal went extinct in the last 150 years - How many of them actually caused any influence in the eco-system, or, in a even less likely influence, how many of them actually influenced our way of life?

natural selection does not means it have to be entirely natural causes. It also applies to pressure from other competitive organism. One example of how evolution cope this, is immune system. As a larger organism we all vulnerable towards small organism, such as bacteria or parasitoid (not to be confused with parasite) ; host on us and use our body as nutrient sources or for their reproduction system. So, natural selection let the ones who developed immunity live, where the ones without natural selection dies.
or, a more common example. When the NA squirrel invaded UK, they soon quickly take over the local red squirrel, causing the red squirrel in UK mainland to extinct. Now, only the Wright Island still have the precious red squirrel.
Natural competition between animals happens. We are animal too!



I
Quote:t is another for them to run out of food because we used it for something else or we paved the place where it grew.



Humans are a plague on the planet, they breed like rats and behave like
rats and eventually will become totally dependent on synthetic food and
materials because we wipe everything natural out.



Used to be the human population was controlled by periodic transmitted
diseases that would wipe out vast numbers of the population. But we have
conquered nature to a point, enough to make us the worst plague that
ever hit the earth.



The problem is that we are getting good at evading natural selection and
the rest of life on the planet is not able to compete. So we are slowly
but surely destroying ourselves along with our planet.



Perhaps once we are done new species will come and populate the earth and this will start from scratch.



Or, we could evolve and stop breeding like rats and behaving like rats
and the human species could continue to live on the planet and so could
everything else that is part of the eco system.



Perhaps we will manage to support ourselves without nature, control all aspects we need and discard the rest.



The problem with that is that we make mistakes, we do not know the half of it.



Look for instance at things we did decide to subject totally to human "creation", such as having enough food for all.



Most younger people today do not even know what a tomato tastes like.
The tomatoes you can buy commercially (and that even extends to
varieties sold in stores to plant in your garden to grow yourself,
although they do have more flavor that way) were bred to grow faster, be
harder so they don't get injured during picking and mass shipments,
respond to artificial application of color (they are red but unripe),
grow on bushes rather than vines so space requirements are reduced, are
loosely attached to their bush so picking is easy, are resistant to
various diseases etc.



What they are not selected for is flavor and nutrition and for the most
part people don't even notice anymore, younger people grew up with "card
board tomatoes".



If you want to taste an actual tomato, and get the nutrition it
provides, you have to buy heirloom seeds that have not been altered and
grow them yourself. And, damn are they good!



This hold true for most things. Pork has become flavorless, as have all
the other meats. Won't be long and you won't be able to taste the
difference between pork and beef. Fruit are flavorless. Most fruit and
veggies are naturally sweet - which makes other flavor characteristics
that are caused by nutrients palatable. But the way they are mass
produced doesn't allow for the sugars to build, and they don't taste
good anymore.



Like I said, these are all things we have lost for long enough now so that the younger population is unaware of it.
Unrelated. I assume you confused this with another topic about eating pork.


Quote:With the elimination of nature, more and more such losses will sneek
into our lives, your children and their children will not know many
things that give you pleasure now. The masses will live on flavorless,
packaged, enriched foods that are lacking many things that we do not
understand now. "Real" food will sell at a prime and be limited to the
wealthy. It's already heading that way....



To destroy nature means to give up on many pleasures it provides.
Species preservation and living green are feeble attempts at controlling
this. What needs to be controlled is procreation, if we stop
overrunning the planet like rats then the planet will continue to yield
what we need without our having to tinker with everything. Let's face
it, we have learned a lot but we don't even understand the simplest
things about ourselves, like nutrition.
Again, unrelated. I am talking about why spend so much money on endangered specie who fails at reproduce, and were abandoned by natural selection. Do not confuse this with ideas like mass destruction of rainforest blah blah blah.

Its 2 complete different ideas. destroy rainforest is like the destruction of an entire eco-system from heads to tail, but yet again, I can still argue its all part of nature. Some animals (like us) is capable of changing the entire eco-system, and have done so in the past - and.... what? Nothing have changed! Nature will find its way to adapt themselves, and the ones that did not adapt will become extinct - this is natural selection -
One good example is the savanna grassland (unconfirmed though, I only heard about this theory but I haven't confirmed it yet) - Why grassland? its because African elephant went rampage on this land, knocking out all the trees, which destroyed the original habitat of rainforest, so instead, a new eco-system called grassland formed.
Same with desert - if there is no desert then there would be no desert eco-system - the only reason why we brainwash our kids to think desert is a death zone is because it is deadly to US - human. Desert species would love to see their eco-system to expand im sure for certain.


well, this is out of topic - My original idea was - why keep so much money to keep certain animal that SHOULD extinct, such as the giant panda - to stay alive?
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13-04-2012, 07:10 AM
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
Hey, 4B.

I agree with you on one thing. Pandas are used to gain sympathy because they're cute. No one would give a shit if they were asked to save some nasty looking bug. But this is a marketing issue, not an importance issue. They all need to be saved.

An ecosystem is a system. The difference between a system and a heap is that you can divide a heap in two and nothing happens. You can remove pieces from a heap and nothing happens. If you do either of those to a system, the system doesn't work. This is because the pieces of a system are INTERDEPENDENT.

Evolution is not a solitary process. Every other species, every rock formation, every weather pattern, affects everything else in the system. We wouldn't have an oxygen balanced atmosphere without worms and we wouldn't have fewer rats in cities without cats and, well, the list of interdependencies is astronomically long.

It's true that sometimes, a species goes extinct and the effect on the ecosystem is negligible. But it's equally true that sometimes the disappearance of a single species is catastrophic. These species are called KEYSTONE SPECIES. The premise of keystone is best illustrated with this commercial for Jenga. We can never predict which piece is the keystone piece but once it's removed, the system collapses. We only know about it AFTER THE FACT.

In evolutionary science, this is known as PUNCTUATED EQUILIBRIUM. It means that the system is largely stable for long periods of time, but that stability is punctuated by periods of massive change, like the Jenga tower collapsing.

There are ALWAYS species going extinct. It happens all the time and yes, it's the product of natural selection. This is called the BACKGROUND EXTINCTION RATE. The problem today is that as a direct result of human activity, we are at about 2 500 times the background rate. We're losing, depending on who you ask, between 50 to 200 species EVERY DAY. It's being the Holocene Extinction and in terms of species loss, it's right up there with the second worst mass extinction in the history of this planet; the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event 65.5 million years ago - the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. That's the scale of species loss we're dealing with. And it's due entirely to human activity.

Ecosystems can be looked at locally, a swamp say, or globally, the biosphere. It's systems within systems. You mention the rain forest. The biosphere entire benefits from that local ecosystem. So here's the thing. If we're wiping out dozens of species every day and we have NO IDEA which species are keystone species, we're playing Jenga with the biosphere.

So when we say things like, "stupid pandas are dying because they're not fit", it's true in the sense that they are not fit for the habitat we are leaving them with, but had we left them alone, they would have done just fine. It's like saying, "stupid family deserved to die because they weren't suited for their house," right after we lit their house on fire. I suggest HIGHLY that you read The Future of Life by EO Wilson. It explains all of this in far better detail than I can. He goes into great detail about HIPPO; the five factors of human activity that threaten biodiversity: Habitat destruction, Invasive species, Population, Pollution, Overharvesting. I also WHOLEHEARTEDLY recommend Ishmael by Daniel Quinn.

The problem with the Homo genus is that it's not diverse. There's only one species of Homo; Homo sapiens. It is entirely possible that we can collapse the biosphere in such a way that the earth will no longer be hospitable for humans; we will no longer be fit - like what happened to the dinosaurs. This is a problem. When we look at pandas, it doesn't seem like one could lead to the other but that's not the point. The point is that we have an obligation to ourselves to protect diversity because diversity is what keeps ecosystems, the biosphere included, healthy and robust. Diversity diminishes the odds of punctuated change, or ecosystem collapse. Human material needs are not the only consideration, not because they're not important, but it's like saying, "why would someone want to breathe when there's food to eat" It's not a question of either or, it's a matter of making sure both happen because we need both to live long lives. The current production model of just going in like a bull in a china shop and clearcutting and strip mining and monocropping is a flawed model because it is costing us dozens if not hundreds of species per day. We simply based our production model on the axiom of UNLIMITED GROWTH because when we began this civilisation thing 5 000 years ago, it seemed like there were unlimited resources. Now, with the entire planet mapped and laid claim to, it's clear that our resources are in fact FINITE and that our model simply cannot be sustained. The species that are disappearing every day is nothing more than DEFICIT SPENDING. It's not that we cannot produce, it's that we have to have a model that includes the importance of habitat and species diversity and that replaces unlimited growth with limited or sustainable growth, if not replacing the growth model entirely; perhaps a model that incorporates BOOM AND BUST cycles. Otherwise, we're engineering our own extinction. If pandas are the poster boys for a global effort to alter our production model and to be conscious of the fact that we have an absolute need to protect biodiversity, so be it.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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16-04-2012, 01:24 PM (This post was last modified: 16-04-2012 05:21 PM by Logica Humano.)
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
I personally believe it is in our best interest to protect and help endangered animals recover for the simple maintenance of the world's ecobalance. Of course, I am sure people like you would rather put the money that would save the world to more important products, like the iPad3.

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16-04-2012, 04:07 PM
RE: Why do we protect endangered animals?
I haven't read through all the responses so I apologize in advance. I will read through later on when I have more time.

In short, Humans have the power to directly affect the "natural" order of the eco-system. No other species has this power. We could go completely against nature by destroying this planet with nukes. This is not "natural". I keep quoting "natural" because one can philosophy the meaning, but that's another debate.

You speak of minority species, but you have to realize that in the natural world without humans, extinction is a very slow process. Slow enough for nature to adjust the balance accordingly. We humans are rapidly causing the extinction of animals. This gives nature little to no time to adjust. Every single species of living thing, no matter how innocuous they seem, is part of the circle of life. Bees pollinating flowers, ants ridding the ground of natural trash like carcasses, ants being the food source for animals like the ant-eater, etc...

This is why there are people devoted to preserving the species of animals that we had a direct hand in endangering.
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