How to Help Endangered Species

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In order to help endangered species, it's important to understand the causes of their endangerment, such as habitat loss, exploitation, pollution, climate change, invasive species and diseases. Learn about community-based conservation with help from a science teacher and field biologist in this free video on biology.

Part of the Video Series: Chemistry & Biology
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Brian with and today we're going to talk a little bit about how to save and help endangered species. So endangered species are those species that are at risk of going extinct, which means they no longer exist. Many scientists actually said that we're currently in the sixth mass extinction; so they've been five other events in the period of earth's history where they've been major die offs. So a lot or several scientists say that we're now in the sixth one, but that this one is largely human-caused. So there's many many endangered species currently and listed being updated yearly. So in order to understand what you can do to help, we need to understand some of the major causes of endangered, of species endangerment. One of the most important causes is habitat loss. So if an organism losses the place where it lives, it's going to have trouble continuing on existing. And so habitat loss; it's like deforestation as well as sort of cities expanding and encouraging upon former wild areas. You have over exploitation. So the harvesting of animals maybe elephants for their tusks or for meat. A lot of times, things that, you know, people need to eat, but, the way that things are done now; a lot of times it's considered poaching and it's just, to such a scale that the animals can't regenerate themselves fast enough. You have pollution, climate change is a major one and that's affecting organisms and they simply can't adapt fast enough. You have invasive species that are being introduced largely through human movements to distant places; species are kind of tagging along and then being set free in this new environment where they don't have any competition. And then finally there's also disease. So diseases are spread and always cause problems. So some things that you can do to help; habitat loss is one of those major ones that we're trying to prevent and we usually go about setting up conservation areas. Conservation is great; absolutely wonderful. The only problem is that people are there too; we're trying to keep people out. So one thing that's been developed is a concept called community-based conservation. I highly encourage you to support community conservation efforts. Basically what they're trying to do is get the people living around the preserve invested in a project by having their lives directly benefited by the conservation of those species. So check out more about community-based conservation for sure and try to support it. In terms of, a lot of the other factors; pollution, climate change, that kind of stuff; try to decrease the amount of waste that you're putting out; limit your fossil fuel use; all those sort of things; really be careful when traveling to new zones that you're not introduce a new species; that sort of stuff. Ultimately though keep in mind that humans are part of a larger system or part of the earth where one, one species and we're having dramatic impact. So if you live your life with that thought in mind, you'll definitely be doing your part to help endangered species.


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