Back from the brink saving animals from extinction
Back from the Brink: Saving Animals from Extinction by Nancy CastaldoThe acclaimed author of Sniffer Dogs details the successful efforts of scientists to bring threatened animals back from the brink of extinction, perfect for animal lovers and reluctant nonfiction readers. With full-color photography.
How could capturing the last wild California condors help save them? Why are some states planning to cull populations of the gray wolf, despite this species only recently making it off the endangered list? How did a decision made during the Civil War to use alligator skin for cheap boots nearly drive the animal to extinction?
Back from the Brink answers these questions and more as it delves into the threats to seven species, and the scientific and political efforts to coax them back from the brink of extinction. This rich, informational look at the problem of extinction has a hopeful tone: all of these animals numbers are now on the rise.
Back From The Brink: Saving Animals From Extinction
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A technique to produce eggs from ovarian tissue in the lab may offer hope for critically endangered species like the Northern White Rhino that have passed what is currently considered the point of no return. A research team at the University of Oxford has begun work to find a new way of saving the Northern White Rhino by using tissue taken from animal ovaries to produce potentially large numbers of eggs in a laboratory setting. Led by Dr. Suzannah Williams, researchers working on the Rhino Fertility Project will refine the method that she has successfully demonstrated in mice. Rhino tissue is scarce and precious—however, ovarian tissue has been obtained by Dr. Williams from a euthanased Southern White Rhino which provides the foundation for the work.
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Back from the Brink is a non-fiction book about seven different animals who are going extinct: the grey wolf, whooping crane, bald eagle, California condor, American bison, American alligator, and the Galapagos tortoise. We learn what made some of these species almost extinct, like the hunting of wolves because they were seen as bad or dangerous; hunting and loss of habitat of the whooping crane; hunting and lead poisoning of California condors; sailors taking the Galapagos tortoise and storing them in their ships for food, and the goats that the sailors brought, which ate up the habitat that the Galapagos tortoise needed to live. We learn about what people and scientists are doing to help the animals. There is a California condor recovery program. When there were just a few condors left in the wild, they captured them and bred them, allowing conservationists to later release new condors into the wild. This is how they have helped the condor population get bigger.
He conducts what may be one of the longest continuous monitoring of any sea reptile, an effort of 34 years, and has presided over a cultural makeover that has turned the sea turtle, once a popular menu item, into a star of a multimilliondollar tourist industry. But Balazs credits the giant reptile itself. For decades, Hawaiians hunted the animals for their skin, which was turned into handbags, and their meat, a delicacy. In , his first year of fieldwork, Balazs counted a mere 67 nesting females, not enough to compensate for the rate at which Hawaiian green sea turtles were being hunted. Killing a honu became a federal offense. The green sea turtle made progress, despite its slow reproductive pace: females reach sexual maturity at an average age of 25, and swim from Hawaii to their nesting grounds and back—a 1, mile round trip—every three or four years.