Human Impacts on Ecosystems - 1.cdn.edl.io

Human Impacts on Ecosystems - 1.cdn.edl.io

Human Impacts on Ecosystems Adapted from:https://www.arkive.org/education/teaching-resources-11-14 What are some of the greatest threats to biodiversity? Often as a direct result of human activity. Some of the most common threats include: Habitat loss Hunting and poaching Invasive species

Climate change Collection and the pet trade Golden-crowned sifaka Case Study: The Power of Plastic Why is plastic such a problem? Around 275,000 tonnes of plastic are used each year in the UK alone. Thats about 15 million bottles per day. Globally, we make around 265 million tonnes of plastic each year.

Plastic (generally) isnt biodegradable and can take up to 500 years to decompose. White stork The Great Pacific Garbage Patch Waste has become trapped by rotating ocean currents Thought to cover an area around twice the size of France Plastic varies in size from household objects to tiny particles

Estimates suggest that in this area, plastic particles outnumber plankton 6:1 Not only affecting species at sea, also washing ashore. American coot How is this affecting species? Example: Green turtle Currently considered an Endangered species Doesnt start to reproduce until 26 to 40

years of age Returns to breed only once every two to five years The female hauls out onto the beach at night and digs a large nest with the back Green turtle Typical nesting habitat should look like this: But is increasingly looking more like this:

Watch and Discuss Video: Hawaii: Message in the Waves After watching the video brainstorm what kinds of data scientists could take to measure human impact on the albatross population. Measuring impacts For scientists working in conservation, being able to measure and quantify our human impact on the environment is really important. For the plastic waste example, you could

measure: Number of chicks successfully fledging (leaving the nest) each season. Chick mortality rates how many die each season? Total population size trend is the population getting larger or smaller? Quantity of plastic inside the albatross boluses. Laysan albatross bolus (above) and chick (below)

What can we do? Help clean up participate in a litter pick or beach clean up Reduce your use of plastic products Reuse plastic bags and other plastic products where possible Dispose of your plastic waste properly, always recycle where possible REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE! Your Task Choose a different human impact topic (not plastics) and pick a species

affected by it which you would like to research. Using ARKive and other web resources, find as much information as you can about how your chosen species is affected by human impacts on the environment. Write an expository news story or documentary short film introducing your species, explaining why it is threatened and describing how you could measure the impact humans are having on this species. Illustrate your presentation using photographs and films from the ARKive website. Possible Topics Habitat loss and deforestation

Hunting and poaching Invasive species Kakapo Black rhinoceros Golden-crowned sifaka Climate change

Polar bear Collection / pet trade Siamang

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