Treacherous Times for Life on Planet Earth
Condensed by Native Village
Over the past 4,500,000,000 years, planet Earth has seen
five major mass extinctions. The worst one claimed up to
96% of marine life and 70% of terrestrial life. Another
was during the Cretaceous-Tertiary period when the
dinosaurs were killed, probably after a meteor hit
Many scientists agree another mass extinction is
happening now. They call this the Holocene
Below are a few major species that are being threatened:
have discovered that a fatal fish virus, called VHS, has
spread throughout the Great Lakes. Authorities are
trying to raise
public awareness and prevent a widespread outbreak.
Since 2006, beekeepers
have reported colony collapse disorder. That's
when a worker bee suddenly disappears from a colony.
Some believe agricultural pesticides are the cause. The
EPA is investigating.
Bees are necessary to pollinate the world's plant and
food crops. Without bees, plants may need millions
of years of evolution to reproduce without them.
Bats: White nose syndrome is killing cave-dwelling
bats across the Northeast.
However, the fungus may only be a symptom of what's killing them. Some bat
species have declined by more than 90%. The bats are crucial to controlling insect
The disease may be spreading. A dead bat with white
nose syndrome was found in France.
Cavers are advised to stay
out of caves in affected states.
1/3 to 1/2 of all amphibian species are on
the edge of extinction. They are threatened by
diseases, habitat loss, pesticides, climate change, and
human activity. While they survived the last extinction,
amphibians may be
the first to become extinct in the Holocene extinction.
These are among the species most affected by habitat
loss. The ocean situation is especially
dire. Overfishing, pollution and a shifting food supply
are severely threatening marlin, tuna, swordfish and
more. Researchers believe that up to 90%
of large predatory fish have disappeared from the oceans
since the 1950s.
2006, a team of researchers predicted
the oceans would be devoid of fish by 2048.
Humans: Between infectious-diseases,
the threat of nuclear weapons, and food-supply concerns,
humans may become only a blip in the history of planetary life.
Save the Frogs Day!
April 30, 2010
Encourages the appreciation and celebration
of amphibians by people from all walks of