Posted on 12/04/2018 at 01:25 PM by Blog Committee
Today is World Wildlife Conservation Day
A day which celebrates the diversity of the world’s flora and fauna but also raises awareness about the dangers it faces due to human activities. In North America, we hunted the American Bison and the North American Wolf to near extinction. I recently read an article about a species of big cat, native to North America, thought to be extinct, but caught on camera, giving hope that cat species might be managed back to prominence.
There still exists many reasons that these animals are still hunted, ranging from illegal trade to claims of scientific study. Some cultures hunt sharks solely for their fins, releasing the rest of the carcass back to the seas. Rhinoceroses and elephants are hunted to satisfy the lust for ivory by certain types of buyers. In other cases, creatures commonly known to be vermin are hunted to near extinction.
There exists a number of reasons in which greater care and management of the species we share this planet with exists; and if I may be so bold to use a line from "The Lion King", the most important would simply be "The circle of life". In every order of life, one faction lives off of another. When one species ceases to exist, this condition directly affects at least one other form of life. It can cause an increase in the life form that was once the common food source of the previous, and/or it can cause a rolling cascade of failure to other species. The demise of any single life form in totality will have everlasting affects on everything from microorganisms to alpha species.
Perhaps the most often unrecognized negative affects occur to humanity itself. Humans practice adaptability by shear determination, whereas all other species are forced to wait thru various degrees of evolution. Monkeys and apes mirror the ability to adapt very close to humans in some regards, but even in that, these species still do not erect skyscrapers, or send rockets into space. This planet we share is in a state of constant evolution, and in some cases admittedly hurried along by humans, but, wouldn't it be nice if our future generations were allowed the opportunity to witness live accounts of every other life form we now share space with?
A couple of weeks back I happened to be in position to witness the very beginning of the West Hills fire in southern California. That fire, along with the Camp Fire in northern California, blazed a fury through areas of which are home to several protected species. I don't profess to know the exact reason that either of these two big fires began, but I do recognize the ecologically negative impact both had on wildlife that has already been weakened by human interference. Humanity continues to grow and encroach on the spaces left for wildlife. Just last week I was camped out on top of a mountain at an I-90 Montana rest area. It was amazingly picturesque. I was woken up by a banging on the side of my sleeper, and an excited yelling coming from the outside. I rose to the window to find the driver of the rig to my right yelling excitedly to me that there was a bear out there. I asked this driver just exactly where else he thought the bear should be.
Written by "Big Dave" Meiners