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Old 08-27-2009, 06:53 PM   #1
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Default Should Species be Relocated to Prevent Extinction?

Should Species be Relocated to Prevent Extinction?
By Devin Powell, Inside Science News Service
posted: 24 August 2009 10:49 am ET

Should Species be Relocated to Prevent Extinction? | LiveScience
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WASHINGTON (ISNS) -- As temperatures rise in the mountains of the Western United States, the chinchilla-like American pika is paradoxically freezing to death. A warmer climate means less snow during the winter months, which burrowing animals depend on to for insulation against life-threatening cold snaps. Over a third of the pika populations living in the Great Basin have disappeared, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing the latest data to decide whether the animal should be listed as an endangered species.

The population of the pika -- as well as the density of other species -- is thought to be in decline due to climate change, according to discussions that took place last week at a meeting of the Ecological Society of America in Albuquerque, N.M. The scientists considered the pros and cons of moving groups of these creatures to more hospitable locations -- including ecosystem's outside a species normal inhabited areas. The idea -- called "assisted migration" or "managed relocation" -- is a controversial strategy that some consider hubris, and others deem an unfortunate necessity to ensure some species' chances of survival
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When a species is threatened -- by an invasive species, for example, or habitat destruction -- conservation biologists are faced with a choice. They can try to preserve its habitat, breed it in captivity, preserve tissue samples, or attempt a managed relocation to a new habitat.

Traditionally, relocated species are moved to a region that they are known to have once inhabited. In 1994, for example, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service transported 150 gray wolves from Canada to Yellowstone National Park to establish a new population. This led to the gray wolf's removal from the endangered species list in 1998.
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:07 PM   #2
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This is what zoos do. Some times they are successful. There is always a problem of matching the environment the animal needs. They may only be able to keep a few specimens alive, but more and more zoos have a goal of reconstructing habitats and somehow restoring the viablity of a threatened species.
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Old 08-27-2009, 11:54 PM   #3
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Actually.... I don't have a problem relocating them to an area where they were extirpated.
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Old 08-28-2009, 08:39 AM   #4
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Why bother to move them if the goal is not to improve their viability?
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Old 08-28-2009, 12:11 PM   #5
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What does this overgrown mouse eat? Also why is it not sold in pet stores, the thing is adorable!
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:47 PM   #6
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They are adorable. They look like chinchillas only cuter. They eat plants.

Possession, sale, barter, transfer, exchange and import of wild animals as pets is prohibited with little exception.

Ochotona princeps

North American Mammals: Ochotona princeps

Ochotona princeps (Richardson, 1828) - Encyclopedia of Life
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