Why save endangered animals?

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  • #26
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Because I am part of the interdependent web of all existence.
... the only way to restore balance to the ecosystem.
... we break the loop that keeps everything balanced.
Let's not give the ID crowd ammunition.

The earth's ecology is a dynamic system: species emerge: species disappear; niches appear; niches disappear; existing species compete for existing niches; species displaced from vanished niches displace other species or disappear. There ain't no balance. There ain't no interdependent web of life. Life is opportunistic. Populations boom. Populations crash. Ranges expand and contract.

Why save the grizzlies? Because you will miss them when they're gone. Why save the cane toad? Got me. Mosquitoes, ticks, lice, bindweed? Got me again.

Why not prune the ecology down to people, grass, and cows? BSE, and who knows how many other headaches arising from a too limited set of metabolisms, and the metabolic enzymes breaking down proteins to be recycled. The "closed cave" ecology the Israelis(?) found? Half dozen new species --- gonna be a hundred or more before they've catalogued it completely. Truly closed? Gonna have to wait on that --- dollars to doughnuts, they're going to find an energy source percolating in with the groundwater.
 
  • #27
Omega_6 said:
Because many ecosystems will break down if certain animals become extinct...isn't that enough?

...and the golden rule #2 of course: Treat animals as you would want to be treated. ;)
The golden rule does not apply to animals unless your a vegan because I certainly don't want to be eaten in a red wine sauce with pomme frites. Nor do I want to be kept in an almost permanent state of preagnancy so that I always produce milk, or have Peter Davidson with a glove go poking around in my nether region for signs of some gastric complaint while a semi literate farmer straight from farmers cliche weekly says things like 'willnt she be right vetnary' as if all farmers speak like yokels and chew straw.:smile: Anyway can I get any assurances from venomous snakes, big cats or flesh eating spiders that they'll respect my right to be breathing after they've finished with me? Works both ways surely:wink:

Animals should be preserved on the off chance that there's something usefull we can use them for some day, pay things forward I say, besides zoos are fun done properly.
 
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  • #28
Chi Meson
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Why save them?

Because I want them.

The unspoken part of your query is that "saving" the endangered species stands in opposition to something. Why NOT save them? Because it will get in the way of someone's accuisition of wealth. Why is it assumed that the only thing that should determine whether something should be saved, accumulated, or manufactured is whether or not it contributes a quantifiable, monetary, or otherwise capitalistic gain to certain individuals?

If it is my form of pleasure to look at grizzly bears in a wild setting, or scuba dive near coral reefs, or simply know that there are still rhinos walking the plains of Africa, this should not be dismissed simply because it prevents somebody from profiting.

For many, the idiom "pursuit of happiness" does not equal the pursuit of wealth. About two years ago I saw a condor; this was during a 3 week vacation in the SW US. I went subsequently to Sedona, Grand Canyon, Zion plus other neat places, but the sight of the condor was the highlight of the whole trip (and it wasn't even close up!). When I heard that the ivory billed woodpecker might have been sighted (thereby making it NOT extinct) I nearly cried.

Fortunately I am not alone in this belief, and it is a credit to our quasi democracy that people without wealth can still band together to interfere with the limitless accuisition that is, for some other people, their form of "pursuit."

Ultimately, what is so valid about "I wish to make money" ?

Why does "I wish grizzly bears to exist in the wild" not have the same validity?
 
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  • #29
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JasonRox said:
How boring would this planet be with just humans!?

That's good enough for me.

Your question is similiar to asking why stop if a pedestrian starts to walk across the road? It won't affect us if that person dies. Might as well not stop and just hit the person.
You're logic is good and all, except that:

1. Pedestrians, at least the ones I know of, Don't have sharp teeth and eat Humans if need be.

I wanna put it like this: If you are in threat with a Tiger trying to eat you, and you don't want to defend yourself because 'its beautiful'; if thats you're logic, you're right, And I'm wrong. Fortunately, most people, And I doubt even animal conservatives (or whatever the heck they are called) would want to be food willingly.

Don't get me wrong. If an animal doesn't harm humans, I got no beef against it and I mind my own buisness. However, if threatened, I will, given the chance, shoot it so I can survive. Simple. It so happens that many of these dangerous species are endangered (guess why) I couldn't care less about beauty or anything so philosophical If the subject of such affection is going to eat me tear me limb from limb. Bring me a shotgun..
 
  • #30
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Schrodinger's Dog said:
The golden rule does not apply to animals unless your a vegan because I certainly don't want to be eaten in a red wine sauce with pomme frites. Nor do I want to be kept in an almost permanent state of preagnancy so that I always produce milk, or have Peter Davidson with a glove go poking around in my nether region for signs of some gastric complaint while a semi literate farmer straight from farmers cliche weekly says things like 'willnt she be right vetnary' as if all farmers speak like yokels and chew straw.:smile: Anyway can I get any assurances from venomous snakes, big cats or flesh eating spiders that they'll respect my right to be breathing after they've finished with me? Works both ways surely:wink:

Animals should be preserved on the off chance that there's something usefull we can use them for some day, pay things forward I say, besides zoos are fun done properly.
I wasn't being serious about the golden rule #2.:wink: I am also not saying that we should stop species from dying out naturally. I just feel that we have an obligation to try and save any species that we have been destroying. The way we cause animals to become extinct doesn't seem to be natural and therefore has consequences that nature can not make up for right away. I think that we should allow the earth to play out its cycle of life and evolution with as little interference as possible (unless something is threatening our existence). We should take and kill only enough so that it still can be replenished.
 
  • #31
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I think it is very a selfish thing for us/ one people , in a single generation to wipe out the amazing diversity, and beauty that is suppost to belong to all generations and all people. There is this unprovable way of thought. I can not prove it to you. It is asserted that each of us( individual) has the responsibility to make the world a better place, and save guarding it so that the next geneation may take their natural inheredence.
 
  • #32
shmoe
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Bladibla said:
It so happens that many of these dangerous species are endangered (guess why)...
I'll guess- people somehow think that shooting a bear from a safe distance with a high powered rifle, then displaying it's carcass in their living room makes them more of a man. My second guess is people think grinding up the bears testicles and using it as a topping for their sunday will make them more of "a man". I would expect that self defence falls a fair bit lower on the list, though I haven't bothered to look for any numbers (I have much less of a problem with self defence).

heartless said:
Because how would it change the environment if every arachnid were substituted with a lion?
More guessing on my part-this would result in a horrible disaster. I wouldn't get to see it though, I would have several lions in my apartment if this plan went into action and I'm not very close to the door (not that the hallway would be lion-free). These lions would likely be hungry as well, they've just been eating tiny bugs all day.
 
  • #33
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I'll guess- people somehow think that shooting a bear from a safe distance with a high powered rifle, then displaying it's carcass in their living room makes them more of a man.
It is also living in the Alaskan wilderness, waiting for days, rubbing deer urine on your boots, setting your stake, being totally quiet, the one-shot-kill (I don't know if this is true for bears), patience, determination, endurance. I'm not a hunter, but I would guess that has to do with it.
My second guess is people think grinding up the bears testicles and using it as a topping for their sunday will make them more of "a man".
Some people also think they taste good. I wish mine would taste better :frown:
 
  • #34
shmoe
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Mk said:
I wish mine would taste better :frown:
Have you tried a mint sauce?
 
  • #35
Ivan Seeking
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The natural order of things is that we will be one of the 99.9% of extinct species.

For those who think we should just let nature run its course...
 
  • #36
heartless said:
It may be a stupid question, but it's real, and I can't come up with any good reasons to why should we save endangered animals. Any ideas?

F.ex, Would anything important happen if there were no grizzly bears?
It might depend on the species. I imagine extinction of bumble bees would have a large environmental impact.

Polar bears are the moment are headed for certain extinction. Because they can cross breed with grizzlies there extinction might be buffered. I wonder if the ability to cross breed might permit the species to dwindle for hundreds of years and then rebound if the temperature gets low enough. Or maybe they will pick up some traits from grizzlies that will allow them to survive in a warmer climate. I'm just speculating though.
 
  • #37
Ivan Seeking
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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- A new genetically distinct species of hammerhead shark, the ninth recognized species of hammerhead, has been discovered off the South Carolina coast, scientists say.

The new species appears to be rare...[continued]
http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1501AP_New_Shark.html [Broken]

...and is or will be on the list of endangered species. :biggrin:
 
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  • #38
SylviaPixie
why should we save the endangered animals? thats a really good question? Most people don't really care about the animals and they think that they are less then them when really animals should be treated equally like humans. Us people and some nature diseaters are the reasons why the animals are endangered. we take away their homes because we are making homes for us, buildings to work in, malls to shop and hang out, parks, roads and etc. we kill them for their skin and fur for fashion. we use their flesh to have food. we use their bones or horns for medical things in other places in the world. we use the animals more then we ever thinnk we do. We use them for experaments for make up products, house hold products and etc. We are the biggest predators in the animal kingdom. we need to save the animals because they never asked to get all this torture and killing. they don't know that when they are born they would go through all this and then have the worst moments of their lives before they are going to die. thats why we should save the animals. Because they have rights as much as we do to live on this planet!
 
  • #39
Integral
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We simply do not have the depth of knowledge required to declare a species as superfluous. A key to a strong ecosystem is biodiversity. Traditionally man has tried to simplify the environment he lives in. The simpler things are the better we can control. Unfortunately, we may be destabilizing the ecosystem by reducing the number of species. A reduced ecosystem is more susceptible to catastrophe.

We just do not know what species hold a key to the next major advance in medicinal chemicals. Who knows maybe the cure for cancer lies in Tiger dung. Be kind of frustrating to make such a discovery just as the last of the species dies.
 
  • #40
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A lot of you want to save them from what I read. I do not. I personally believe life, this planet, and Nature would be better off if we more embrace survival of the fittest. If polar bears can't make it in the current (man-dominated) environment, that's just tough and if the extinction of one or more species causes some catastrophe, then fine with me. Life was built on catastrophies. Same I believe should hold for every other species on earth including H.sapiens. But we don't do this do we. We save everything in sight and at the same time, preserve the unfit genotypes they contain which in turn manifests in many, many of the ills plaguing this planet at present. Hail the fit gene and I am a Darwinist.

Just putting my opinion in the pot. That's all.
 
  • #41
mgb_phys
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Hail the fit gene and I am a Darwinist.
But you still have your tetanus shots

I welcome our viral overlords.
 
  • #42
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But you still have your tetanus shots

I welcome our viral overlords.
Good point and no doubt you and others could bring up similar ideas. It wouldn't change my extreme Darwinist opinion about the matter though: hail the strong, hail the fighter, hail the warrior, hail the survivor.

I do now wish to get in trouble in here. I see way too many strike-outs. If this is distasteful, I can easily shut up.
 
  • #43
mgb_phys
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Some famous naturalist was being interviewed about how man was the dominant species and what effect we were having on the planet and other animals. His reply wasn't quite what the newsreader was expecting, from memory something like:

We aren't in charge, bacteria are, it's their planet - always has been - always will be.
We don't even figure in their world - all other life just scrapes by on their waste products.
They thrived in a reducing CO atmosphere, thrived in an oxidizing O2 atmosphere, lived on a frozen planet and an almost molten one. There's nothing we can do a the planet that would even mildly inconvenience bacteria.
 
  • #44
svetocha
first we come along and kill them all next we take their skin/fur/tusk/whatever and sell them to get money. then we cut/burn/bury their habitat and drive them out. then we catch the ones left and stick them in cages to earn more money. now they are all dying out in god knows where and you ask why we should help them? cuz the reason they are even endangered is all our fault. thats why. sometimes i am ashamed to be a human
 

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