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How effective has science been to protect endangered animals?
Question Date: 2013-04-26
Answer 1:

Scientific research is really important in protecting invasive species. Scientists study the animals to determine what they need to thrive in nature and what may be harming them. For example, scientist found that a pesticide, DDT, was making bird eggs really thin so that when a bird sat on them they would break. This was really bad for birds like bald eagles, and almost caused their extinction. Fortunately, scientific study found this link between the use of DDT and the decline of birds, so that then DDT was banned and bald eagle populations have recovered. Unfortunately, scientist have not been able to save all animals even though they are studying them. For example, there is a fungus that is spreading throughout the world and is killing many frog and toad species. A lot of scientists are studying this disease, how it spreads, where it came from, why some types of frogs are more susceptible to it than others, etc., but they have not yet been able to stop it. Lots of frog species have died out because of this disease, including the golden toad, a bright orange toad species that lived in Costa Rica.

Answer 2:

Good question - I'd have to say that the jury isn't in yet. Of course, protecting endangered animals (and plants) is not entirely a scientific process, since it also involves politics, economics, in some cases religion, and so on.

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