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Captive Breeding for Endangered Species May Not Be Answer

Cara J

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Taking some of the last few remaining animals into captivity in hopes of breeding shouldn’t always be the last resort to save species, according to new research. Instead, agencies and conservation groups should focus more effort on preventing the extirpations in the first place. “Captive breeding can reduce motivation and resources for conservation in the wild, with disastrous consequences,” said Paul Dolman in a release. Dolman is an environmental science researcher from the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom and lead author of a study published in the Journal of Applied Ecology. “Our research reveals the importance of objectively weighing up potential outcomes of captive breeding and comparing them with efforts to support species in the wild.” Programs sometimes work as a last resort to stop the extinctions of animals like Sumatran tigers (Panthera tigris sumatrae) and Arabian oryx (Oryx leucoryx). The study looked at the case of the great Indian bustard (Ardeotis nigriceps), which dropped from around 1,000 individuals in 1970 to between 100-200 birds today. Some have advocated for captive breeding programs to try to save the bird despite the fact that effective conservation measures haven’t been taken in the wild. The researchers evaluated the potential [...]


Read more: http://wildlife.org/captive-breeding-for-endangered-species-may-not-be-answer/

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