If you watch or read the news, you get the idea that biodiversity concerns are principally about pandas, tigers, elephants, whales, polar bears, etc. These are what conservation biologists refer to as the flagship species biodiversity, i.e. species who you are likely to recognize and care about. The flagship ecosystems are tropical rainforests and coral reefs. No matter how you divide up the planet in terms of what is important from a sustainability perspective, biodiversity is always one of the main categories. This probably seems strange to the average person who wonders why scientists are so concerned about the survival of these species. After all, will the planet really be in peril if they end up existing only in zoos? The reality is that the biodiversity concerns of scientists are with the entire, vast array of millions of species from tiny to large that drive ecosystem functions, functions upon which we humans depend in innumerable ways. The other reality is that it usually takes something as acute as a panda or big as an elephant to get the attention of most people.
System functions are things such as photosynthesis and nutrient cycling which are dependent on bacteria, fungi, algae, plankton at one end and plants, herbivores, and carnivores at the other end. System functions also include physical processes such as rainfall, wind, ocean currents, etc. Both ends of the living component (large species and small species) need to be in balance for the systems to function in a manner that works optimally for humans as well as the organisms that comprise the systems. The “work” that these organisms do that we take advantage of without having to “pay” anything for is referred to as ecosystem services, i.e. the ecological systems and species are providing a service to humans for free. An example would be the breakdown of organic materials in the soil by bacteria and fungi that is needed for plant growth which translates into successful farming. At an even higher level, tropical rainforests are the water pumps that initiate the movement of the atmosphere which determines climate patterns worldwide. Take a look at this video to see what that looks like – Global Atmospheric Circulation Now that is one heck of an ecosystem function! In addition, there are millions of other uses made of species from antibiotics to foods and medicines for everything from blood thinners (saliva from vampire bats) to cancer medicines – some of the latter are made from snake venoms, vampire bat saliva, etc. The list goes on and on.
Unfortunately, much of the world’s biodiversity is in serious trouble due to both the direct and indirect actions of human activities. The situation has become so obvious and acute that there is a serious proposal to create a new geological period name, the Anthropocene, to formally recognize human dominance over the planet. Read this recent piece to get a better idea of what is happening beyond our many city limits. Species Decline Dramatic.
Read Chapters 5-7 in the eText and do a web search to provide information and data to address the following questions. There are dozens of videos on biodiversity and ecosystem services on YouTube and ScienceDaily, ScienceNews, Google, and Wikipedia are excellent places to search for information.
Choose a single ecosystem of any type – desert, prairie, tropical rainforest, boreal forest, etc. – of your choice and briefly describe its diversity.
For the ecosystem that you chose, describe 3 ecosystem services it provides to humans.
What are the biggest threats to the biodiversity in your chosen ecosystem?
*Use 3-4 academic references in APA format with in-text citations to support your initial post!
As the best, my homework help website in the world, Writersabc.com strives to deliver only high-quality finished papers to all customers. We value impeccable quality and guarantee that we will deliver on that promise more than anything else. We will deliver!
With us you are guaranteed of quality work done by our qualified experts.Your information and everything that you do with us is kept completely confidential.
Have you received your finished paper but are not satisfied with what our writer submitted? You can initiate our money-back guarantee to get your money back with no strings attached.Read more
Writersabc.com is the best my homework help website in the world. At WritersABC, we have a team of certified, tried, and tested writers who work around the clock to ensure that you receive only high-quality, 100% original finished papers.Read more
At WritersABC, we guarantee all our customers of the best essay writing service in the writing industry. And that’s precisely what we strive to deliver. As such, we encourage all our customers to utilize our unlimited free-revision policy if you aren’t satisfied with your paper. Don’t accept any paper until you are 100% satisfied with it.Read more
We value the trust that our clients accord us and respect every customers’ rights to personal data protection. We will never share, sell, or rent any information that we collect from you with any third parties. Both your personal and financial information is safe with us.Read more
We have only gotten this far with the help of our loyal customers and a team of dedicated experts. As the best, my homework help website, WritersABC implores customers to help make our writers’ work easier. Visit our fair-cooperation guarantee for more information on the same.Read more