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BIOA02H3 (153)
Chapter 57

Study Guide for Chapter 57

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Biological Sciences
Mary Olaveson

Biology Chapter 57 Conservation Biology: An applied scientific discipline devoted to preserving the diversity of life on Earth Human interference with different habitats and ecosystems have greatly increased the rate of extinction Normative: The embracing of certain values and the application of the scientific method in order to achieve these values. Conservation biology is a normative scientific discipline Conservation biology is guided by 3 principles: 1. Evolution is the process that unites all of biology (you must know how evolutionary processes generate and maintain biodiversity to be able to preserve it) 2. The ecological world is dynamic therefore they is no balance of nature that serves as a goal of conservation 3. Humans are a part of ecosystems; human activities need to be incorporated into conservation goals and practices Although the processes of species extinction is a natural one, which has been done for millions of years, conservation biology aims to prevent the extinction of animals For the first time in history, one species of ecosystem engineers (humans) are the cause of all major environmental changes, which disrupts the natural course of extinction/evolution of different species -The value of biodiversity to humans - Humans depends on other species for food, fibre and medicine - Humans derive aesthetic pleasure from interacting with other organisms - Causing the extinction of other species raises serious ethical issues - Extinctions make the study of ecological relationships and species interactions difficult o More species lost/extinct, the more harder it is to understand the structure and the functioning of ecological communities and ecosystems - Species are necessary for the function of the ecosystems of which they are part www.notesolution.comIt is difficult for scientists to determine an accurate number of extinction that will occur in the future because of the following reasons: We do not know how many species live on Earth We do not know where many species live It is difficult to determine when a species becomes extinct We do not know what will happen in the future However there are ways of estimating when extinctions will occurs, such as: Species-are relationship: A well established mathematical relationship between the size of and area and the number of species that live there Using this, scientists determined, on average, that a 90% loss in habitat will result in the loss of 50% of the species dependent on that habitat Conservation biologists use a statistical model that incorporates information about population size, genetic variation, morphology, physiology, and behaviour to determine the risk
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