As you have learned in the readings, extinction is a natural selection process. You have also read that humans are often responsible for accelerating this process. Using at least two scholarly or reputable resources and your textbook, address whether or not we as humans should be concerned with the extinction rate. Additionally, discuss whether or not humans should strive to preserve representative samples of all biomes on the planet.
Yes, I believe that humans should be concerned with the extinction rate. Humans are the cause of things such as habitat destruction, hunting, pollution, disease, global warming, exploitation and urbanization which are all leading to the extinction of many species. Not all species are affected by all of these factors, but all species are affected by at least one. “We’re currently experiencing the worst spate of species die-offs since the loss of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago… Because the rate of change in our biosphere is increasing, and because every species’ extinction potentially leads to the extinction of others bound to that species in a complex ecological web, numbers of extinctions are likely to snowball in the coming decades as ecosystems unravel” (Center for Biological Diversity, n.d.).
When I started writing this forum reply I was focused only on the extinction rates of animals. While looking for resources I found articles talking about extinction rates of insects and plants throughout the world and how that will affect us as well. “We are confronting an episode of species extinction greater than anything the world has experienced for the past 65 million years. Of all the global problems that confront us, this is the one that is moving the most rapidly and the one that will have the most serious consequences. And, unlike other global ecological problems, it is completely irreversible” (Raven, as cited, McCarthy, 1997).
It wasn’t that I wasn’t aware of the extinction problems of insects and plants before doing this research, but the animal extinction problem is much more publicized in the media. Plants, animals and insects have lived for millions of years on this planet and did not have problems surviving until humans came along and began messing up the atmosphere and habitats. I believe we should take more care of the Earth around us so that the creatures around us can survive longer.
Courtney from Study Moose
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