Human activity such as fishing, hunting, and marine litters are causing a huge amount of aquatic and terrestrial animals to die. About thousands of animals go extinct every year, mostly because of human related actions or of natural causes. Animals, terrestrial or aquatic, serve many different purposes on humans everyday life. One of the main reasons animals are being killed is because they are part of the human diet. Other times they serve for entertainment purposes. This continuous abuse is causing many species to go extinct and will cause a bigger damage if change does not take place.
There are many ways in how to make changes, like stopping hunting or fishing, not using animals for testing or fun and reducing the amount of animal product eaten by humans.
Fishing is one of the main causes of animal extinction in the waters. Thousands and thousands of fishes are pulled out of the water daily. There are populations, especially in Africa, that depend on fish because their lack of other resources.
However, when these fishes are pulled out, more than wanted are taken. A BioScience article written by Jeffrey Hutchings examine the rate of aquatic animal extinction. In the article, they make it clear that fishing is the main issue for marine extinction. “it is not unusual for populations that have declined more than 60% over 15 years to exhibit little or no recovery as much as 15 years later,” (Hutchings).
Over 15 years, these lost populations has not been recovered. On the other hand, they have concluded that there can be recovery for those organism lost in the sea.
“The premise behind most management strategies and recovery plans is that the primary factor inhibiting recovery is fishing” (Hutchings). They know that change can happen, and they can recover certain species or prevent them from going exciting, however fishing will not make this process possible. These organisms need to reproduce over and over to recover the population, but it can’t be possible if humans keep pulling them out of the waters. “Therefore, it appears that a reduction in fishing mortality is indeed necessary for recovery” (Hutchings). Hutchings continues to stress the need of reducing fishing, not only in the United States, but in African also. But this changes will be very difficult to take place, since, as mentioned, many countries , especially the poor ones, depend on fish as a resource.
After fishing, pollution is the second cause of animal extinction in water. And just like fishing, pollution is caused by humans. This issue is more common in industrial countries, where they make things, burn them, and the dump them in water, and in those countries, over 50% of waste is dumped in the water (Norment). Unlike, fishing, pollution can be easier to control, since it’s not a source people depend on. Millions of sea animals are killed each year. Plastic is what kill them the most. When it is dumped in the water for long, plastic breaks into small particles that kills fishes because they eat them. Another example are the six- pack plastic rings dumped in water. The get around the animals and kill them. Sea turtles, seals, sea lions, whales, and dolphins are examples of the most common water organisms to suffer from plastic pollution.
“Traces of contaminants ranging from birth control pills and sunscreen to pesticides and petroleum, our planet’s lakes, rivers, streams, and groundwater are often a chemical cocktail” (National Geographic). This demonstrates that not only industries are dumping waste in the waters, but when people go to the beach, instead of placing their garbage in the trash cans, they dump the in water. Other times these products are dumped on the floor and the wind blows them in water. With these types of product in the water, which are chemicals, not only humans are killing organism, but they are endangering themselfs. When such chemicals are mix together they can damage the human skin, especially of kids when swimming, moreover, they can drink it (Blackwell).
Hunting is one of those factors that have good and bad benefits. Many argue that hunting can benefit the population because when there are many animals of the same species it can lead to serious problems. In addition, it is a way to reduce crime. People turn to hunting when they are angry and feel the necessity to kill (Bronner). However, it is argued that killing such animals for satisfaction it is not fair. Meat is a very important part of the human diet, and most of these resources come from terrestrial animals.
Bronner goes on to say that these huntings have gone too far, especially in the states, as they are no longer for food or protection. Texas, Georgia, Iowa, New York and Kansas are places where hunting is most common. These hunters use this activity as hobby, a way to escape their problems or real world, but they do not think of the way they are harming the animals (Bronner). “Hunting disrupts migration and hibernation patterns and destroys families. For animals such as wolves, who mate for life and live in close-knit family units, hunting can devastate entire communities” (PETA). Killing one animal can cause damage to more. As mentioned in the PETA article, when killing a wolf, who protects and mate for life, it can destroy others. This trend not only happen with wolve but with other species as well.
Hunting does even more damage than killing animals and destroying their families. The process itself lead to aggressive accidents. “Hunting accidents destroy property and injure or kill horses, cows, dogs, cats, hikers, and other hunters. In 2006, then–Vice President Dick Cheney famously shot a friend while hunting quail on a canned hunting preserve” (PETA). The article explains that hunting is bad especially when an animal is accidentally shot, such as cows, dogs and cats. It goes on to say that “thousands of injuries are attributed to hunting in the U.S. every year—and that number only includes incidents involving humans” (PETA). Hunters accidentally kill humans when hunting. Not only humans are killing animals but their own as well.
Animals are being killed for entertainment purposes. Lions, elephant, monkeys, giraffes, and many more mammals are taken yearly for the pleasure of humans. These animals are taken away from their habitat, trained to do human things, and torchered to do even more. “from as many as 200,000 wild lions in Africa a century ago to about 20,000 today” (Panthera). Lions are one of the most used species in circuses. Instead of growing in population they are reducing. Other species with the same issues are the elephants.
Thousands of them are going extinct. The article continues to say that it is very bad for these animals to be taken away for long time and changing completely changing their diet. They are put through a lot when being brought from Africa to other countries. An Idaho, a fish and game commissioner step down from his position after he received hundreds of messages over a picture he poster. The man went to african and killed a family of baboons. He posted this picture on his facebook and instagram profile and they have gone viral after it. People were shocked to see that he killed the whole family, as in the picture, on the the baboons is bleeding and his facial expression is showing pain, leading people to conclude that his was not completely dead. Moreover, the man was holding these animals by their neck and smiling for the camera.
Even though what he was doing was legal, there were lots of complains, even from people who had worked with him. This event shows how people are not content with the treatment of certain animals, even if they are dangerous. This was an example of unnecessary killing because the Baboons were not putting the man in danger in any way. Another issue of unnecessary killings takes place in Spain. Every year, on march, spaniards celebrate the bullfighting. This event include the killing of bulls. It has been years since people have complained and protested for these killing to stop. The event consist of making the bulls running around the city and then killing them with a sword on the bull’s shoulder. This has caused the death of many bulls.
Overall, humans are the main cause of marine and terrestrial animal extinction. Fishes are the most organism to go extincting, lions, and elephants, following. Hunters have caused the deaths of animals and humans. Pollution and fishing have dangerously increased to the point where there will be a period where humans will ran out of fish, especially poor places where they depend on fish. There are steps that humans can take to prevent more organisms from going extincting. First, instead of dumping the trash in the waters, it has to be put them in the trash cans, and plastic has to be recycled. There has to be a limit to the amount of fish that is being pulled out of water daily. Moreover, there has to hunting laws that allows hunters to do their passion but not unnecessary kill animal families. Reducing the amount of meat people eat can reduce the amount of animals being killed daily, mammals especially. Lastly, animal entertainment has to stop. It is fun to watch these animals exhibits but its not fun to think about the torture they are put on when they are taught to jump and stand up and more. These are a few of the things humans can do to help save animals, aquatic and terrestrial.