Endangered Species Research Paper

Endangered Species Research Paper-72
But even when researchers manage to collect data on their species of interest, challenges remain.The next immediate hurdle involves how to communicate research on endangered species to the larger scientific community—or whether to communicate it at all.

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That episode joined a long list of examples of research-savvy poachers targeting rare animals almost as soon as they were described in the literature.

Even well-meaning amateur naturalists can unwittingly upset endangered species just by trying to catch a glimpse.

While numbers of the species have been increasing following drastic declines shortly after European colonization, several populations are still considered endangered.

Tiger quolls are elusive creatures and provide a challenge to researchers such as Emma Bennett, a wildlife ecologist at Monash University in Melbourne who studies their ecology.

“It’s quite a specific microhabitat that some of these animals rely on,” says Scheele, “and even just searching for animals can be really damaging.” The resulting quandary of whether or not to publish data on endangered species’ locations pits science’s fundamental need for transparency against the risk of sensitive information falling into the wrong hands.

Evangelista says he and his colleagues have sometimes kept sightings of rare organisms “under wraps” because of their concerns about blowing a species’ cover.Understanding the biology of the species that are most at risk from this disturbance is a critical prerequisite to developing effective strategies to conserve them.But scientists who survey endangered animals have to grapple with a number of special challenges alongside the traditional research pressures of publishing and grant writing.Drones are increasingly being recruited to identify and locate hard-to-find animals as well (see “Fly-by” below). Pimm says that technologies that were either nonexistent or nascent a decade ago have “become quite standard procedures for studying biodiversity and what we humans are doing to it.” He notes that technology may be fundamentally changing the nature of biodiversity and conservation research.“Now you can go out and buy a helicopter kit, put a camera on it . “We’re increasing by many orders of magnitude the rate at which we accumulate data,” he says.ore than 14,000 species are listed as endangered or critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.Some scientists have called for naming the present geologic epoch the Anthropocene, or “human era,” after the main source of startlingly rapid rates of species extinction and other environmental perturbations.“We’re not just doing this to publish papers—we’re out here trying to save species, and we just have to be very conscious of who sees that data and who has access to it.”Lindenmayer and Scheele addressed the issue head-on in a paper published last year entitled, simply, “Do Not Publish” (, 30–801).In the paper, the researchers laid out the case for protecting data on critically endangered species, and they proposed an assessment that scientists could use to decide whether they should publish their information in the literature.Indeed, when the researchers published their findings from Somaliland this March, they decided not to report details about the distributions of most of the species they studied.“As researchers that are on the ground, it really puts us in a very tough situation,” he says.


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