Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Why save island species?


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We previously reported on the endangered Lord Howe stick insect, and now there’s another probably extinct, but possibly just endangered Lord Howe species – a bat! (photo credit of closely-related Gould’s Long-eared bat:  Department of Environment Primary Industries) Scientists don’t know whether this species still exists, but they’re trying to gather information to solve the mystery.

Last week, we mentioned that 15 Hawaiian species are newly listed as endangered species also.  So why do we see these listings?  Often, islands are home to species seen nowhere else on Earth.  Because of the geographic isolation of islands, unique species often evolve in these areas – they end up being hot-beds of biodiversity conservation (think lemurs in Madagascar). 

Want to help conserve island species?  Here are a few organizations that you might want to check out:

  • The Duke Lemur Center is dedicated to conservation, research, and education to help protect lemurs.  Perfect for Giving Tuesday! Duke® Bumper Sticker.
  • Educate yourself using the State of Hawaii’s fact sheets on species of greatest conservation need.
  • Lord Howe Island has a friend group!  Check it out here.

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