Wildlife is a precious gift of God to this planet. The term ‘wildlife’ not only caters to wild animals but also takes into account all undomesticated lifeforms including birds, insects, plants, fungi and even microscopic organisms. For maintaining a healthy ecological balance on this earth, animals, plants and marine species are as important as humans. Each organism on this earth has a unique place in food chain that helps contribute to the ecosystem in its own special way. But, sadly today, many of the animals and birds are getting endangered. The natural habitats of animals and plants are being destroyed for land development and farming by humans. Poaching and hunting of animals for fur, jewellery, meat and leather are other great factors contributing to wildlife extinction. If soon, no stringent steps are taken to save wildlife, it would not be long when they will find a place only on the list of extinct species. And that would not be all! The extinction of wildlife species will certainly have a fatal impact on human race as well. So, for us as humans, it becomes a great responsibility to save the wildlife, our planet and most importantly, our own selves. Here are few more reasons that will provide you an in-depth understanding why wildlife plays such a significant role in maintaining an ecological equilibrium on earth.
For Healthy Eco-System
The eco-system is all about relationships between different organisms connected through food webs and food chains. Even if a single wildlife species gets extinct from the eco-system, it may disturb the whole food chain ultimately leading to disastrous results. Consider a simple example of a bee that is vital for growth of certain crops due to their pollen carrying roles. If bees get reduced in numbers, the growth of food crops would definitely lower owing to lack of pollination.
Similarly, if a specie gets increased in number, again it can have an adverse effect on the ecological balance. Consider another simple case of carnivores which is getting reduced every day due to human poaching and hunting. The reduction of these carnivores is leading to increase in the number of herbivores who are dependent on forest vegetation for their survival. It would not be long, when the number of herbivores in forests would soar to such a great extent that they would move to agricultural lands and villages for their food needs. Thus, saving wildlife plays a great role in ensuring a check on the ecological balance thereby, maintaining a healthy eco-system.
For Medicinal Values
A huge number of plants and animal species are used to benefit humans in one way or the other. Many of the medicines such as aspirin, penicillin, quinine, morphine and vincristine have been derived from uncultivated plants. If we talk about the ancient medicinal system of Ayurveda, it has also been using extracts and juices from various plants and herbs to cure problems like blood pressure, diabetes and many other neurological problems since ages.
It’s not only the plants which are useful, many of the extracts from animal species are rich in nutrients and anti-oxidants. For instance, the oil from lever of Cod fish is rich in Omega 3 and Omega 6 anti-oxidants that helps fight ageing, chemicals derived from shrimps and lobsters are used in treating fungal infections, venom of Cobra is used as a cure for leprosy and the list does not end here. Today, various species of animals are also being studied and researched upon to find cures to deadly diseases like cancers, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. If wildlife is not preserved today, there would soon be a time when human race would also be in great danger.
Have you ever wondered where you will go for wildlife safaris, nature photography and bird watching if there are no forests? Where will you go fishing and angling if no fishes are left in lakes and rivers or in the worst case scenario, these water bodies disappear due to deforestation resulting in warmer climates? If you have never thought about these questions earlier, this is the right time to think about them as forests, wildlife, oceans, rivers and lakes are under major threat. With humans disturbing nature at such as fast pace, it would not be long when we will have only limited options for recreation activities in the lap of Mother Nature. If we do not start thinking about saving the wildlife now, there will soon be a time when will be not be taking our kids to zoos and biological parks to have them a glimpse at beautiful animals and birds but, would be showing them the pictures of these creatures only in books bearing the tagline of ‘Extinct Species’ in bold letters.
Today, almost all the wildlife authorities across different countries are facing illicit acts of poaching and killing of animals by smugglers for animal skins, tusks and horns. What these people don’t realize is that today, they might be earning big fortunes by indulging in these activities but, 10 or 20 years later there would be no animals left which once used to be their source of incomes. What more? When there are no animals, there would be no forests and no forests means soil erosion, warm weather, drying up of lakes and rivers, no rains and hence, no crops and vegetation. This all is a cascading effect which every human needs to realize now. And, it’s not a one man’s job to save wildlife; it’s a joint effort that every single person needs to be part of. The wildlife authorities should come forward with stringent plans of minimising human interference in the core forest areas and effective wildlife tourism policies should be implemented so that illegal activities can be effectively controlled. Plus, for us as individuals we should start working towards taking small steps from our homes; minimize the use of electronic equipment such as air-conditioners that contribute towards global warming, pool vehicles while commuting so that there is less pollution and less harm to the ozone layer and save water. Even if we start contributing our bits to the environment and nature, it would come back to us for our good in future.