Captive Breeding In Panda Bears Essay

1882 words - 8 pages

Maximizing the Environmental enrichment of Panda's in Captive BreedingIntroductionHuman beings play a major role in shaping biodiversity as well as the landscape. As the human population increase, the demand for natural resources continues to increase, leaving a small percentage of the earth that is not affected by human activities. These activities have gone further to affect even the protected areas as well as natural reserves in one way or another. Although there is much effort to protect the environment and conserve biodiversity, there is still conflict between wildlife conservation and social economic development. Continuous human activities have posed a threat to wildlife in particular, driving certain animals close to extinction. One species of animals that have been affected is the giant panda. Conservation of captive populations plays a crucial role in the survival of Panda population. Giant panda has been declining for thousands of years due to hunting by humans and climatic changes. Its populations originally extended throughout most of southern and eastern China, northern Myanmar, and northern Vietnam. By 1900, it occurred only in the Qinling Mountains and along the edge of the Tibetan plateau. Soon after 1900, the expansion of agriculture upstream along principal river valleys separated this distribution into separate regions in six mountain ranges. Small, isolated populations also face a greater risk of inbreeding, which can lead to reduced resistance to disease, less adaptability to environmental changes and reproductive problems. Pandas stand a much greater chance of extinction if they remain isolated from each other. The greatest threat to panda survival is the loss and degradation of its habitat. The giant panda's range is steadily shrinking as logging operations harvest vegetation for fuel. In the first ever mass survey that took place in 1974, the researchers estimated that there were around 1,000 -1,100 giant pandas in the wild. In the 2nd ever survey, done in 1988 around 1,000 animals were thought to exist. One effort to increase giant panda populations has been to breed them in captivity. This program, which occurs at zoos or research facilities where ideal breeding conditions are created, has been quite successful. This paper thus investigates the effect of human activities on the population of giant panda, and the need to create reserves for this species.Literature reviewIt is apparent that most wildlife species view natural places as their habitat. However, human activities have interfered with these habitats posing a threat to the existence of most species. In this regard, human activities include household structures, human needs and wants, population demography, actions such as deforestation and charcoal burning as well as perception toward wildlife conservation. This has subsequently altered the wildlife habitat condition, making it hard for some species to thrive (Liu, Ouyang and Taylor, 2006). It is from the...

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