Wildlife


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Wildlife Essay, Research Paper

The

?cry of the wild? can still be heard across this great land. I have heard

the bugle of an elk on the Great Plains…the shrill of a bald eagle along the

banks of the mightily Mississippi…the roar of a brown eagle bear on windswept

tundra…and the gobble of a wild turkey among western foothills. Amazing beauty

can still be found in the natural landscapes of this great land. I have seen

through televisions, articles, books, and newspapers the towering

forests…pristine waters…rich wetlands…wide-open prairies…majestic

mountains…and vast deserts alive with color. I am in awe by the complexity and

wonder of the natural world. Truly, it is where you can find solace and peace.

America is truly blessed. A land rich in natural resources—-our sense of

adventure, pioneering spirit, and tenacity. Irving Berlin?s God Bless America,

Woody Guthrie?s This Land is Your Land, and Samuel Smith?s America all

declare a love and respect for this land we call ?home.? It is our duty to

regain a love and respect for the land, its beauty, and life ?s comfort. The

legacy of our natural resource heritage must be preserved. Education is the

answer. Through writing my paper I have learned that endangered species is more

than a name, it is a mission in-and-of-itself, a mission to keep safe our

wildlife—forever. The earth is home to more than 5.2 billion people, each

having certain needs, wants, and desires. The process of consumption drastically

changes the natural landscape, an many cases to the wearing away of other

species. Consumption transform vast quantities of natural resources, such as

fossil fuels and trees, into countless products and mountains of waste. As such,

it directly and indirectly impacts land use decisions including wetland

drainage, the clearing of forest, mining, agricultural production, and

development. Over time, the increasing affect of poor land use, decisions, and

reckless use of natural resources have undermined the integrity and to keep up

the ability of the natural world, resulting in global environmental reduction.

In his book, Earth in the Balance—Ecology and the Human Spirit, Vice President

Al Gore writes: ?The disharmony in our relationship to the earth, which stems

in part from our addiction to a pattern of consuming ever-larger quantities of

the resources of the earth, is now manifest in successive crises, each marking a

more destructive clash between our civilization and the natural world: whereas

all threats to the environment used to be local and regional, several are now

strategic . The loss of one and a half acres of rain forest every second, the

sudden, thousand fold acceleration of the natural extinction rate for living

species, the ozone hole above Antarctica and the thinning of the ozone layer at

all latitudes, the possible destruction of the climate balance that makes our

lives livable–all these suggest the increasingly violent collision between

human civilization and the natural world. For civilization as a whole, the faith

that is so essential to restore the balance now missing in our relationship to

the earth is the faith that we have a future. We can believe in that future and

work to achieve it and preserve it, or we can whirl blindly on, behaving as if

one day there will be no children to inherit our legacy. The choice is ours; the

earth is in the balance.? What is the leading threat to wildlife? What does

the word ?threatened? mean? What does the word ?endangered mean? Does

extinction really mean gone forever? What happened to the Bald Eagle? The words

?threatened? and ?endangered? are used to describe the status of rare

wildlife and plant species. Threatened is used to classify a species with

dangerously low population numbers. The bald eagle is an example of a threatened

wildlife species. And extinct is used to identify a species that no longer

exists or has died out. The dusky seaside sparrow is an example of an extinct

wildlife species. Persistent decline in wildlife populations led Congress to

enact the Endangered Species in 1973. The act mandated the federal government to

protect endangered wildlife, plant species, and their habitats. Today, there are

over 1,000 species protected by the Endangered Species Act. Approximately 50

species are added each year. The loss of any species is cause for great concern.

However, extinction occurs naturally as part of the process of evolution. In

fact, paleontologists (one who studies the past geological periods) have yet to

agree upon what caused dinosaurs to become extinct. Theories include a collision

with a massive meteorite or the eruption of a volcano leading to drastic changes

in climate conditions. For whatever reason, when one group of animals takes its

place. Generally, the ?new? species is better suited or adapted to the

environment. It may have concealing camouflage or tremendous speed. It may be

able to tolerate drought conditions, extreme heat, or cold temperatures. It may

benefit from a wide variety of foods instead of a limited few. The adaptability

of favorable characteristics and the ability to survive and flourish is commonly

referred to as ?survival of the fittest? or ?natural selection.?

Although extinction occurs naturally over the course of thousands of years and

the strongest species, human activity has accelerated the rate of low.

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