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conservation bio

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BIL 116

Chapter 57 Conservation Biology571 What is Conservation BiologyDevoted to preserving the diversity of life on EarthDraws heavily on concepts and knowledge from population genetics evolution ecology biogeography wildlife management economics and sociologyConservation biology is a normative scientific disciplineConservation biology is a normative discipline embraces certain values and applies scientific methods to the goal of achieving these values motivated by the belief that preservation of biodiversity is good and that loss is badIs guided by three principlesoEvolution is a process that unites all of biologyoThe ecological world is dynamicoHumans are a part of ecosystemsConservation biology aims to prevent species extinctionsOrganisms have always altered Earths ecosystemsVery first organisms probably reduced the supply of energetically and structurally useful compounds replacing them with waste productsEarly photosynthetic prokaryotes and eukaryotes generated oxygen unsuitable for anaerobic organismsPlants colonized the land accelerating the weathering of rocks thus gaining access to rockbound nutrientsWeathering of phosphorus increased global productivityrise of oxygen concentrationsRise of vascular plants increased oxygen concentration lower carbon dioxide concentrationsHuman beings cause extinctions of other speciesoWhen first arrived in N America 20 000 years ago encountered a rich fauna of large mammalsoMost species were exterminated overhunting within a few thousand yearsThe productivity and richness of Earths biota has increased during the long course of lifes evolution but current situation is unique all environmental changes are being caused by a single speciesThats why now more and more people value biodiversity for many reasonsoHumans depend on other species for food fiber and medicineoSpecies are necessary for the functioning of ecosystems and its many benefits and servicesoHumans derive enormous aesthetic pleasure from interacting with other organismsoExtinctions deprive us of opportunities to study and understand ecological relationships among organismsoLiving in ways that cause the extinction of other species raises serious ethical issues572 How Do Biologists Predict Changes in Biodiversity
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