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New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species num

Discussion in 'The Library' started by Rich, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. Rich

    Rich Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    A new report lists the 25 most endangered turtle species from around the world -- some of which currently number less than five individuals.

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    Use this thread to discuss the article above. What are your thoughts about New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species number less than 5 individuals?
     
  2. YellowOctopus

    YellowOctopus Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    This is really, really sad. Reminds me of this, actually:

    TRAFFIC - Wildlife Trade News - Would-be wildlife smuggler gets three bagsfull

    There's a point where I wonder if it's even worth conserving the species for the species. Four individuals of a species is extremely low, and any rebound of the species would be extremely time-and-money intensive.

    For example, look at cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus). About 10,000 years ago, their populations crashed. Now, their genetic diversity is so low that any cheetah that needs a skin graft can get one from any other cheetah in the world because there's virtually no variation in the protein antigens that make transplants so difficult for any other species.

    This would be just fine, but it also puts the species at a really high risk of being completely wiped out by just a single disease.

    If any of these species were to start to rebound, we'd be carefully watching them for quite a while. On the order of centuries.

    There are some species, like any apex predator (i.e., many species of shark) or keystone species (i.e., termites) that obviously should be protected until the last. But...with species that don't have as much of an impact on the ecosystem...when do you call it quits?

    For that matter, how many victories has the conservation movement actually had?

    Sorry, I do support conservation whole-heartedly. These finer points have been causing me some angst for a while, and the news cycle is so disheartening about it.
     
  3. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    If there is a chance of saving a species, any species, from extinction, we should do whatever it takes.I would not care to have to explain to my grandchildren that, yes, we had the opportunity and COULD have saved such and such species that has disappered.
    But it just wasn't worth the trouble!
    And so exactly who gets to decide which species are "worth" saving?
    Some government bureaucrat?
    The sad state of affairs in which we find many of our species in is due in large part to our greed, meddling and selfishness. We have stomped around the planet, looting and pillaging the natural world. Nothing was safe from our singleminded pursuit of OUR desires.
    Since WE are the cause of the problem, so we should also be morally bound to be the solution.
     
  4. gapeachkatie

    gapeachkatie Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    It is sad that man kind is causing this kind of endangerment to any species of animal, but the fact that I go to antique malls and find piles and piles of "aged" turtle/tortoise shells for sell with "made in Taiwan" stickers is horrible. I believe that anything and everything that can be done to save a species, should be done. Some may say that it is evolution and the way the world works, but when people cause it to happen faster than nature would prevents future species from being created.
     
  5. YellowOctopus

    YellowOctopus Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    Merlin, have you read Douglas Adams' "The Last Chance to See?"

    It's a short, non-fiction book about him traveling all around the world to see various endangered species, like komodo dragons, Yangtze river dolphins and various bird species on Mauritius. It's hilarious.

    I think you'd like it. Some of the species in the book, specifically echo parrots and pink pigeons on Mauritius, were down to 6 members of the species and because of a small group of conservationists, are back up into the hundreds.

    The generational and morality arguments work for me, but not for business owners negatively affected by conservation, and I think here is where I begin to despair a bit.
     
  6. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    But that is exactly the point. The people who are only interested in money are the ones that have contributed to the problem to begin with.
    Say I want to build a shopping center,...but it just so happens that the property is the last stronghold for an endangered species. Which do we need more? To preserve a vanishing part of the natural world,..or another WalMart?
     
  7. YellowOctopus

    YellowOctopus Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    Should have said small business owners. I didn't mean to say blanket business owners- the last people you'll catch me defending are corporations.

    For example. Shark finning is a massive problem for oceanic ecosystems. Something like 76 million sharks have been killed only for their fins in the last 10 years, which is a huge problem because sharks take 15-30 years to reach reproductive maturity. Sharks, being an apex predator, are extremely important to the structure of the marine system below them, yadda yadda.

    The problem is that shark fins pay really well once you get to shore, and they take up less space on board. This is extremely attractive to poor fishermen living in areas (Costa Rica, Spain, Portugal, Morocco...) where commercial fishing has hit hard because it's a way to feed their family for minimal work.

    Obviously the best way to solve this problem is to help alleviate economic problems in those areas, which is expensive. That takes a tax base that's both wealthy and willing to spend the money. The more and more I talk to people, the more and more it becomes evident that while there are a large group of people willing to help solve these problems, there are even more who think that the problem isn't theirs, is exaggerated or that it's extortion.

    I have a hard time imagining people embracing science enough as a whole to understand that these are real problems and that they should make sacrifices for them, even more so now that my state has become ground zero for politicians selling policy for corporate campaign money. Maybe you've had different experiences?
     
  8. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    It still falls into the "but what happens when" catagory. If a species is wiped out for the convenience of anyone, then we all lose. So they make an easy living on a species. That should entitle them to wipe it out? So what happens when there are no more? Then they have to work harder. Why not work harder NOW and preserve the species?

    Its the same arguement that logging companies have put forth to argue that they should be able to log out old growth forests.
    Because otherwise they would lose jobs.
    So once they DO cut them,...those forests are wiped out. The jobs go anyway. And an irreplaceable peice of the natural ecosystem goes with it.
    We need to learn to see past the ends of our noses.
     
  9. YellowOctopus

    YellowOctopus Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    I agree. It's just so disheartening to see the sheer number of people who can't, as you put it, see past the ends of their noses.

    But really, check out "The Last Chance to See."
     
  10. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    Oh I intend to! Thanks for the referal!
     
  11. zaroba

    zaroba Elite Member

    Re: New report lists 25 most endangered turtle species; Some turtle species

    pretty much the way i see it.

    but sadly, there are a lot of people who just don't care about world. all they look at is money and don't care about future problems since they think that by the time those problems come around, they will either be rich from their exploitations or dead.
     

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