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Breeding wild-extinct species (was Re: That lazy BOT (was Re: decentwar))
> As we get deep into the winter doldrums and convention starts to
> the mist, it has been traditional, here, to air gripes, ideas,
> and such ....
OK, let me cause a little trouble, then.
I've been very interested in why people feel it is important
to preserve -- in captivity -- a fish species that has gone
extinct in the wild. What's the point? That species can never
be returned to the wild since generations of captive breeding
have made them a different creature compared to their wild
ancestors -- will they have the smarts to survive? Even if the
habitat is restored, would it have the right ecological
requirements to support that fish, or would the reintroduced
fish be able to support that habitat's ecology?
Is it done to honor and appreciate a species that took millions
of years to evolve, only to be wiped out by habitat loss/pollution?
Is it done because you're fascinated by, or wish to study a
creature that evolved in a very specialized ecological niche,
like the desert pupfishes? Or maybe you just want to brag about
it? (Hey, I like to brag about the uniqueness of my Endler's
Livebearers ... :-)
Or do you think these captive species (many generations of
captivity, that is, not just a few generations) can be reintroduced
to their restored habitat?
I'm just interested in how people feel about this, philosophically.
Personally, I don't know what to make of it.
On a related note, for those of you who don't know, JR Shute
and company at Conservation Fisheries are doing excellent
work in reintroducing endangered fish to restored habitats.
Check out their neat website at
Just thought I'd stir the mud a bit .... :-)
whimbrel at comcast_net
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