It’s a peculiar position in our modern times that those with economic interests in our lands are OK with protecting endangered species, but don’t want to include the habitat they inhabit. It’s a peculiar position because without its habitat a plant or animals species is merely an isolated artifact.
Saving wildlife cannot be done without saving the land the species came from because the species and the land it evolved on are one. Not in a fuzzy progressive way.
Those animals in a zoo, removed from their habitats, have no purpose and have lost their environmental importance. Plants and animals in a habitat co-evolved with each and changed each other, sometimes for millions of years.
If we don’t protect the lands that endangered species inhabit then there is no use in protecting the species. Ultimately, the whole point of protecting endangered species is not pulling aside these species for preservation in a place where they serve no purpose but to entertain us. The purpose of saving endangered species is to preserve our environment--that which sustains our existence.
Think of these endangered species as components in an engine called our environment: When you yank these components from their place in our environment, you have damaged the entire engine. This story should be on our radar:
Timber industry wants out of wildlife rule - Times Union ALBANY -- The state's timber industry is lining up to fight proposed state environmental rules that would treat a potential threat to an endangered species' habitat as a direct threat to the animal itself. The Empire State Forest Products Association, which represents about 600 companies that own or manage more than a million acres of forest, is urging members to get behind a petition drive asking that land not be covered under the proposed rules. State rules have long protected endangered animals from being killed or harassed due to new development. This month, the state Department of Environmental Conservation proposed extending that protection to lands that such animals rely upon to live, feed and reproduce. (August 21, 2010) Home - Times Union