Biodiversity: To Defend or not Defend?Brown Bears Amanpreet Munder SBI3U0 Mr. Kass
Species Profile Taxonomy: • Kingdom – Animalia • Phylum – Chordata • Class – Mammalia • Order – Carnivora • Family – Ursidae • Scientific Name – UrsusArctos • Common Names – English: -Brown bear -Grizzly bear -Mexican Grizzly bear -French: ours brun -Spanish: osopardo
Species Profile Geographic Range: • Widely distributed • Once ranged across a large portion of North America, including Northern Mexico, throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and across North Africa. • Largest number exists in Russia, U.S., and Canada • Currently occurs in Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra Armenia, Austria, Canada, China, Greece, India, Iraq, France, and many other countries. Possibly Extinct: Bhutan Regionally Extinct: Algeria, Egypt, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Mexico, Switzerland, etc.
Species Profile Habitat: • System – Terrestrial • Variety of habitats from dry to Arctic shrublands to temperature rain forests • Greater diversity of habitats than any other species of bears • Productivity and density of brown bears varies enormously • Live in forests, shrublands, grassland Population: • Population Trend - Stable • Total population of brown bears is estimated to be 200,000 • Russia has the largest number of Brown Bears, 100,000 • U.S. is estimated to have 33,000 • Canada has 25,000 • Small populations of brown bears are scattered in many portions of Asia • Pakistan is estimated to have 150-200 bears
Major Threats • As a whole, this species is secure. • Small populations of brown bears are threatened due to their low numbers and frequent contact with humans. • Brown bears are attracted to areas with human-related food • Brown bears can get aggressive that leads humans to kill them • Bears living near humans may be killed by vehicles or train collisions • Sometimes hunted for sport or killed for control purposes • Habitat fragmentation is a serious threat • Rural or recreational development, road building, and energy and mineral exploration is one of the many current threats to the brown bears. This is harmful because brown bears use corridors to travel from one area to another when they are searching for food. • Small numbers of bears removed from small populations can have a bad effect on population growth. Why are they Endangered? • Humans often kill brown bears out of fear • Sometimes killed for fur trade and food.
Personal Response What is biodiversity? Biodiversity means variation of all living organisms living in an area. There are 3 types of biodiversity: Genetic Diversity, Species Diversity, and Ecological Diversity. Genetic diversity means diversity of genes in a species. Species need certain genes to survive. If the diversity is lacking, they may die. Species diversity means variety of living things in areas such as rainforests, deserts, tundra, etc. Ecological diversity means complexity and richness of an entire ecosystem. All 3 of these diversities are very important. In fact we rely on them. Biodiversity is very important. Humans depend on plants and animals. An example of that is one quarter of all prescription medicines in the U.S. have ingredients from plants. If these plants die out, there won’t be any medicine. Every plant and animal in the ecosystem has a big role. The benefits from a diverse ecosystem are plants, clean water and air, provides oxygen, and controls erosions. Biodiversity helps humans in many ways as well. Plants absorb greenhouse gases and help stop global warming. Healthy biodiversity of species can provide a variety of food. All of our wood products come from nature, and many more useful ways biodiversity helps humans. One more important thing about it is these values are free to us, but as we lose biodiversity, the cost of replacing these would be very high. Biodiversity can be found wherever there is life which is all around the world. Many species are found in the Amazon rainforest, Great Barrier Reefs, and African Savannah. Over a 1000 of species were found. Biodiversity is very beautiful and should be enjoyed. In order to enjoy biodiversity, you also need to keep it clean which people tend not to do. There are major threats to biodiversity that are occurring such as, air pollution, water pollution, climate change, global warming, using up natural resources, habitat destruction like clearing forests or draining wetlands for towns or agricultural purposes, and many more major threats. You can help save biodiversity by stop using pesticides, stop junk mail to save paper and protect forests, use eco-friendly cleaning products, volunteer at a nature centre, park, or at a zoo, and put out bird feeders. There are many more ways you can help biodiversity. It’s important for everyone living on this planet!
Action Plan • As part of a global effort to protect the planet and the animals that inhabit it, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) one of the world's largest conservation agreements, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). • CITES is an agreement between governments to make sure that international trade of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival. The CITES protects Brown Bears from illegal poaching for paws, trophies and gallbladders. • To date, 160 governments are bound to the Convention, protection to more than 35,000 species of animals and plants. Not a single species protected by CITES has become extinct since the agreement began in force in 1975.
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