Introduction - TeachLine - The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

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Conservation Biology (Ecology)
Lecture 1 – what is conservation
biology?
Oct 2009
Salit Kark
Department of Evolution, Systematics and Ecology
The Silberman Institute of Life Sciences
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
The course will deal with two directions:
Conservation biology: theory
Conservation biology in practice
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
What is your personal experience
(with conservation biology)?
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Human impact on the environment – long
North America – extinctions
Africa – fires
Mediterranean Basin and Levant –
domestication, grazing, agriculture…
Traditional and modern society – urbanization
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Approaches to nature and biodiversity:
Traditional native societies
Religions
Modern “Western”
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Approaches to nature and biodiversity:
Traditional Native American Societies
(Touch the Earth pg. 15, 23, 47, more)
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some religious approaches:
In many religions we find humans physically
and spiritually connected with nature
Hindu, Buddhist, Chinese Tao, Japanese
Shinto philosophy: wilderness areas and
natural settings are protected for their ability
to provide intense spiritual experiences.
Direct connection between the natural world
and the spiritual world, which humans need
to protect.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Approaches to nature: Biblical Jewish
approaches
'‫בראשית פרק א' וב‬
Third Century Fresco, Rome
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
‫בראשית א'‪ ,‬כ"ו‪-‬ל"א‬
‫"ויאמר אלהים נעשה אדם בצלמנו כדמותנו וירדו בדגת הים‬
‫ובעוף השמים ובבהמה ובכל‪-‬הארץ ובכל‪-‬הרמש הרמש על‪-‬‬
‫הארץ‪ .‬ויברא אלהים את‪-‬האדם בצלמו בצלם אלהים ברא אתו‬
‫זכר ונקבה ברא אתם‪ .‬ויברך אתם אלהים ויאמר להם אלהים‬
‫פרו ורבו ומלאו את‪-‬הארץ וכבשה ורדו בדגת הים ובעוף‬
‫השמים ובכל‪-‬חיה הרמשת על‪-‬הארץ‪ .‬ויאמר אלהים הנה נתתי‬
‫לכם את‪-‬כל‪-‬עשב זרע זרע אשר על‪-‬פני כל‪-‬הארץ ואת‪-‬כל‪-‬‬
‫העץ אשר‪-‬בו פרי‪-‬עץ זרע זרע לכם יהיה לאכלה‪ .‬ולכל‪-‬חית‬
‫הארץ ולכל‪-‬עוף השמים ולכל רומש על‪-‬הארץ אשר‪-‬בו נפש‬
‫חיה את‪-‬כל‪-‬ירק עשב לאכלה ויהי‪-‬כן‪ .‬וירא אלהים את‪-‬כל‪-‬‬
‫אשר עשה והנה‪-‬טוב מאד ויהי‪-‬ערב ויהי‪-‬בקר יום הששי‪".‬‬
‫‪Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1‬‬
‫בראשית‬
‫"ויקח ה' אלוקים את האדם ויניחהו בגן עדן לעבדה ולשמרה"‬
‫)בראשית ב'‪ ,‬ט"ו)‬
‫"בשעה שברא הקדוש ברוך הוא את האדם הראשון‪ ,‬נטלו‬
‫והחזירו על כל אילני גן עדן‪ ,‬ואמר לו‪ :‬ראה מעשי כמה נאים‬
‫ומשובחין הן‪ ,‬וכל מה שבראתי בשבילך בראתי‪ .‬תן דעתך שלא‬
‫תקלקל ותחריב את עולמי‪ ,‬שאם תקלקל אין מי שיתקן אחריך"‬
‫(קהלת רבה‪ ,‬ז')‬
‫‪Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1‬‬
Wilderness
Originated in the old English word "wildeornes",
which meant "the place of wild deer“ )wildeor
meaning wild beast (wild + deor = beast, deer).
Effort to protect nature was made by the kings of
England in the Middle Ages.
Motivated by a desire for private hunting preserves.
Needed to protect the wildlife from poachers and
the land from the villagers who would cut down the
trees for firewood.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
European Colonialism, explorers and
governors:
Mauritius French Colonials (1769) set
aside 25% of forest landholdings for
preventing erosion, protected allk forests
200m from water and planted trees in
degraded areas…
Tobago Caribbean island: British
officers set aside 20% of land as
“reserved in wood for rain”
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Europe – some conservation history
Establishment of the:
Commons, Open Spaces and footpaths Preservation
Society (1865) in England
National Trust for Places of Historic Interest and
Natural Beauty (1895)
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (1899)
Preserved together over 5 million dunam (500,000 ha)
of open lands
More in other countries, such as Poland.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
British Mandate:
Jerusalem Valleys preserved as open areas…
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
Two opposing views had emerged within the
environmental movement by the early 20th
century: the conservationists and the
preservationists.
The conservationists (such as Pinchot) focused
on the proper use of nature, whereas the
preservationists (such as Muir) sought the
protection of nature from use.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
Environmental thinkers and leaders in the US:
Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau (mid
19th century): Transcendental Conservation Ethic.
Nature has uses besides economic gain.
John Muir: Preservationists Ethic, natural areas have
great spiritual and artistic values, as well intrinsic value.
Countered by Pinchot’s Resource Conservation Ethic
(early 20th century). Multiple uses of nature and fair
resource distribution.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
Environmental thinkers and leaders in the US:
Aldo Leopold (government officer, early-mid 20th
Century): evolutionary-ecological land ethic
maintain natural ecosystems and processes, with
humans taking a part, ecosystem management.
The idea of protecting nature for nature's sake
began to gain more recognition in the 1930s with
him calling for a "land ethic" and urging for
wilderness protection.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
Early perception of equilibrium and later of
nonequilibrium, dynamics.
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Some history of modern conservation thinking
Environmental movements – public, NGOs
(Sierra Club, Audubon Society, SPNI)
Conservation Biology – scientists
First meeting in San Diego by Michael Soulé,
Paul Ehrlich, Jared Diamond (1978)
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
What is Conservation Biology?
A new, quickly advancing scientific discipline
textbooks
Scientific
journals
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Conservation biology Principles – the scene: (Meffe):
Evolutionary
processes
Dynamic
ecology
nonequilibrium
The human
role
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Conservation biology (Soulé):
Aim to conserve (Meffe):
Diversity of organisms
Ecological complexity
Evolutionary processes
Biotic diversity (has inherent value)
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Conservation biology (Primack):
Three aims:
• “To document the full range of biological
diversity…
• To investigate human impact on species,
communities and ecosystems…
• To develop practical approaches to prevent
extinction of species, maintain diversity within
species and to protect and restore biological
communities and their associated ecosystem
functions”
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Conservation Biology –
some characteristics:
 Multidisciplinary – combines natural and social
sciences
 Combines applied management with theoretical
approaches
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
(Primack Fig. 1.1)
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
Conservation Biology –
some characteristics:
 Ties “pure” science and practice (“real world”)
 Value-laden, mission oriented…but methodology is
based on good, objective science
 A “crisis” discipline, decision making with
incomplete knowledge
Salit Kark, Conservation Biology, Hebrew University, Lecture 1
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