Species Depletion:marmot, owl, caribou, spirit bear By: Nahaal Fadaeian
Marmot • Many marmots establish their own colonies where their habitat consists of small mountain meadows in high elevation. They dig their homes underground in the deep soil. Problems • Clear cut logging and newly cleared mountain slides give predators (wolves and cougars) access to the higher elevations where marmots live • Golden eagles hunt in higher elevations. • Alpine marmots used to be widely hunted by people for their fat or for sport purposes.
Vancouver Island marmots is one of 14 marmot species worldwide and one of the most critically endangered mammals in the world • The decreasing population of Vancouver Island marmots had caused them to be widely scattered, making it difficult to find mates • Reproduction takes place at a slower rate. • Some die during hibernation
Helping Marmots • Marmot Recovery Foundation increased public awareness. • Captive Breeding program started in 1997- breeding facilities include Mount Washington on Vancouver Island • Once marmots are bred they would be reintroduced back into the wild. • Current population of wild marmots is 140-160. Recovery target is 400-600. • All marmots are fitted with radio transmitters upon release to the wild. It also helps capture and relocate predators that have been found equipped with these transmitters.
Owls • Burrowing owls are endangered species that are slowly disappearing. Spotted owls are also in danger because of contentious logging where they live in the temperate coniferous forests. Because: • There are too many predators • Grass land is being used for farming, transportation (roads), and homes • Owls can be harmed after eating grasshoppers that have been sprayed by toxic chemicals • People disturb their nesting areas. • Logging
Solutions • Protecting nest sites • Leaving land and room for owl habitat • Captive breeding • Not using chemicals to kill insects so that owls would not be poisoned • Try not to clear out so much of the grass land • Regulations on logging • Educate people
Caribou • Population is decreasing. Caribou is a food source for northern indigenous people. Problems: • Hunters continue to hunt caribou • Global warming- temperature change. Ex. “Unusually warm weather in recent years has led to an increase in freezing rain, which coats the tundra with a layer of ice. Unable to break through this surface to eat the vegetation beneath, large numbers of Peary caribou have starved.”-CBC news • Oil and gas reserves • Mines • snowmobiles
Solutions • Government of Nunavut is trying to develop a management plan with the hunters because Peary caribou population is too low to hunt. • Oil and gas reserves are trying to be built in areas away from caribous • Signs for motorbikes • Regulations on hunting practices • Petitions have been signed to urge B.C. and Canada to fully protect old-growth forests where there are endangered mountain caribou • Educate people
Spirit Bear • The spirit bear also known as the “Kermode bear” live in the central coast of B.C. 1/10 of the population having white/cream colored coats. Problems: • Clear cutting (Habitat destruction) • Logging (Habitat destruction) • Not enough legal protection • Declining population causes the unique genetics that produce the white bear to not be carried.
Solutions • “In a Feb. 7, 2006 announcement, the Province and First Nations agreed to significantly increase protection on the B.C. north and central coast. This is very good news. This includes tripling the size of the Khutzeymateen Grizzly Sanctuary and creating a new Spirit Bear Conservancy Complex. These are two of the protection initiatives that the Valhalla Wilderness Society (VWS) has spearheaded for nearly 20 years.”-savespiritbear.org • Regulations are trying to be made to decrease the amount of logging and clear cutting • Protecting Habitat http://archives.cbc.ca/environment/environmental_protection/topics/679-3924/
What I think… • Educate yourself! • Volunteer! • Protect animal habitat • Regulations • Petitions • Keep the environment clean
Bibliography • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpine_Marmot • http://www.lodgingchannel.com/marmot/ • http://www.saskschools.ca/~gregory/animals/burowl1.html • http://www.davidsuzuki.org/Forests/Canada/BC/Spotted_Owl.asp • http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/caribou/ • http://www.savespiritbear.org/