More on Taxonomy and Conservation (minor rant)
Sat, 24 Jan 2004 11:44:55 PST
In a message dated 1/24/2004 12:07:57 PM Central Standard Time, Jshields 

> If we want to practice ex situ preservation (preserving a species by 
> growing it in cultivation) we each should grow the climatic or geographic 
> population that is best suited to our local ex situ climate.


It seems likely that "ex situ" conservation is all that is possible for many 
lineages.  Predicting the future is tricky, for economists, politicians, and 
biologists.  Some predictions about loss of plants are startling in their 
claims, and very sad if they are anywhere near true.  The one that got my attention 
recently was published this month in the science journal Nature.  The 
prediction was that 15% to 37% of the world's species of plants and animals will be 
lost by 2050 if current warming trends continue.  

The study explored a range of geographic and biodiversity regions from 
Europe, Australia, Mexico, Brazil, Cape Floristic Region (South Africa).  Some of 
these locations have provided exceptional bulb species and are of interest to 
this group for that reason alone.  But they are also interesting because the 
authors claim the geographic locations are representative of much of the earth, 
and allow extrapolation of findings.  

Naturally, the greatest uncertainty in the study was global warming:  1) will 
it continue and 2) how much warming can be expected.   Opinions vary, but I'm 
in the group that thinks global warming is not going away.  

LINK 1:  National Geographic Magazine report of Study… 

LINK 2:  CBS News Report of Study… 


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