Why Save an Endangered Species?

Protecting endangered species is important to maintain biodiversity in an increasingly unstable environment. We don’t know what the future holds or where our next medicine will come from and every unique adaptive genetic pattern may hold unforeseen importance. It is important to protect keystone species which are foundational to ecosystem balance. Natural selection has its place, but when humans are wiping out mass quantities of biodiversity and the only reliable survival trait any species has is how effectively it can survive on human waste, a lot of potentially valuable genetic coding is being lost. To the best of our ability, we should attempt to protect the existence of all endangered species because we do not yet fully understand every interaction a single species has on its surroundings of the potentially irreparable damage the the ecosystem which could be caused by the removal of any one species. When it is not possible to save all endangered species, a decision must be made to focus on protecting the important species which are known to be crucial aspects of the ecosystem of which we are also a part. 

For example, if sea acidity continues to increase, it will reach a level high enough to wipe out all sea algae at once. When this happens we will lose half of the oxygen producing plant life on the planet and large mammals such as humans will disappear shortly after. Sea algae is therefore a keystone species which should be protected if we value our own continued existence.

Cute and colourful rare birds probably don’t fit into that category. The Orange-bellied Parrot isn’t even a particularly well known Australian iconic animal. The main thing it has going for it is that it is pretty, and I’d like to live in a world where we don’t just let all the beautiful things die just because they aren’t profitable.

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