The opossum shrimp - once food for salmon, now a threat to ecosystem diversity
- Conservation biology that concerns conserving natural resources for generations to come.
- Biodiversity is the variety of life on Earth.
- At least 10 to 20% will most likely become extinct in the next 20 to 50 years.
- Bioinformatics is the collecting of, analyzing, and making readily available biological information.
- An endangered species is one that is in peril of immediate extinction.
- A threatened species is one that is likely to become endangered in the future.
- Genetic diversity refers to genetic variations among the members of a population.
- Ecosystem diversity is dependent on the interactions between species in a given community. Saving charismatic species is short sighted since that species could disrupt the established ecosystem.
- Landscape diversity involves a group of interacting ecosystems within a landscape (mountains, rivers, and grasslands for example).
- Biodiversity hotspots contain a large concentration of species. Examples include the island of Madagascar, the Cape region of South Africa, Indonesia, the coast of California, and the Great Barrier Reef of Australia.
The biodiversity of species on Earth
The rosy periwinkle has direct value in treatments for leukemia and Hodgkin disease
- Most of the prescription drugs used in the US, valued at over $200 billion, were originally derived from living organisms.
- Species have direct value, including medicinal, agricultural, and consumptive use.
- Species such as the domesticated honeybee contribute billions of dollars to the agriculture industry because of their pollination.
- The indirect value of species include biogeochemical cycles, waste recycling, prevention of soil erosion, regulation of climate, provision of fresh water, and ecotourism.
- Massive changes in biodiversity caused by things such as deforestation have significant impact on ecosystems.
- Species diversity may even trigger an increase in the level of carbon dioxide absorbed.
The ladybug, which controls pests such as aphids
Coral reefs, which are affected by habitat loss
- The causes of extinction include habitat loss (85% contribution), exotic species (50%), pollution (24%), overexploitation (17%), and disease (3%).
- Habitat Loss - occurs in all ecosystems; caused by development of previously species-rich areas; biggest effects can be seen on tropical rain forests and coral reefs
- Exotic Species - nonnative ecosystem species that tend to have destructive effects on native species; methods of introduction of exotic speices includes: colonization (brought by foreigners), horticulture/agriculture (plant species originally percieved to be beneficial but end up invasive), accidental transport (i.e., by ship)
- Pollution - environmental change that affects the lives and health of species; causes include acid deposition (sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides become acids in water vapor and come back down as acid rain/snow or salts), eutrophication (over-enrichment which causes excess algae growth, leaving less oxygen for fish), ozone depletion (causing excess UV reflection), and organic chemicals (causes wildlife to produce normal behavior preventing hormones)
- Climate Change - changes in the Earth's climate; caused by methane and carbon dioxide gases, which cause higher average temperatures; may cause extinction as species try to migrate to more suitable climates (towards the poles)
- Overexploitation - when the number of individuals taken from a population starts to affect the numbers; includes rare plants and animals (parts of the animal become valuable, such as fur), and overfishing (i.e. trawling nets which is nearly like deforestation)
Grizzlies - a pinnacle of American wildlife and ecology
- Preservation and restoration of habitats is important for preserving biodiversity.
- Habitat Preservation - the world has "hotspots" with unique native species (such as Madagascar)
- Keystone speices - species that are important to a community, such as bats, which pollinate and spread tree seeds, and the grizzly bear, which can drop as many as 7,000 seeds in a dung pile
- Flagship species - species that are valued as emotional by humans (for characteristics, appearance, etc.), such as lions, tigers, or dolphins
- Source and Sink populations - source populations live in favorable areas, and have higher birthrates (compared to death rates); sink populations have lower birth rates that may equal or be less than the death rate
- Landscape Preservation - benefits not only the target species but others too, for instance, many speicies reside in areas set aside for grizzlies, and also have seen an increase in gray wolf populations
- Edge Effect - a transition from one habitat from another, and reduces the amount of land available to the habitat due to the difference between the edge and interior; causes population decline and social parasites
- Restoration - scientific ways to restore ecosystems; three steps: start as quickly as possible, understand the history of the species, and create a self-sustaining ecosystem