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Rescue for the Rarest
This is about a rare cat, a very rare cat, the RAREST wild cat: the Amur Leopard, which is hanging on the brink of extinction by a thread. So rare that there are only 20-40 remaining! Forest loss is their main threat, due to expansion of agriculture, and the harvest of forest products for timber, wood, and fuel. Half of the worlds original forests are gone! To make matter worse, they are being destroyed 10 times faster then possible regrowth! Luckily, my friends, all hope is not yet lost, read on.
The Amur Leopard is not only very rare, but also very beautiful. In the summer, it's coat is only 2.5 cm long, and a sleek reddish yellow, whereas in the winter the hairs grow to 7 cm and become a pale, lighter shade. Throughout the year, it's speckled in thick-bordered rosettes, a rose-shaped marking used for camouflage. It's long legs help it walk through the snow in it's temperate habitat, near the Chinese/Russian border. The adult's eyes are a hazel or blue-gray, and the kittens are a bright blue. Unfortunately, the beauty of these animals has led to many people hunting them for their pelts.
The Amur Leopards have many interesting facts about them, most of which you would likely want to know. Firstly they live in temperate forests, farther north then any other leopard subspecies. Their main vocalization is a raspy call, and they can leap up to 10 feet high vertically! For a very short bursts, they can run 36 mph, and surprisingly, they are very strong swimmers, and like water unlike most other cats. They get their name from the Amur region. Now, these facts are only for your reading pleasure, so to see how you can help, read on.
Our Earth to Save
We humans are only one of the millions of organisms on our planet, but humans are the ones most dominant on the food chain. We are also the most destructive organism, thus it is our responsibility to take care of our environment and live alongside of it. There are many issues that remain unresolved, that we must work together to fix. There are various things you can do to help be a part of the millions of people that aim to heal the land and restore the planet. We rely on nature, on our Earth, for nearly everything, so at the end of the day, any damage to nature is damage to the future of the human population.
Currently, there are many problems of concern about our Earth. For example, over-fishing. According to the article written by National Geographic, all the world's fisheries will have collapsed by the year 2048. That may seem a long ways away for any, but the next generation will grow up considering a simple fish a rare creature. Fishing more than needed is taking a considerably large toll on the environment, since the extinction of each species throws the whole food chain off balance. Deforestation is another major issue, many animals are becoming extinct due to it, and thousands more species are losing their homes. Old-growth forests are being cleared, and the tropical rain-forests are being reduced by the hour. Lastly, climate change is affecting cold biomes, and melting the ice needed by organisms for shelter and food.
The Earth is in danger, though many people don't know, and it is estimated that the peak has passed and we cannot undo our damage. We can, however, reduce our impact on the environment by doing some very simple things. Firstly, we can drive less, and walk or bike more, which will reduce pollution being produced. Recycling, rather than trashing, reduces the land cleared for dumps, and stops the harvesting of our dwindling natural resources. Unplugging electronics when not in use not only saves electricity, but money as well! If everyone that reads this does these simple things, we can truly make our Earth a better place for all of us.
We need nature. No, don't you deny it, nature is essential to us, in almost every way. We need many plants for medicine, and without them, there would be less oxygen and more carbon dioxide. We also need animals and plants for food, since everything we eat comes from living things. Also, it would be quite a shock for us when the last lion or tiger dies, and we realize that our kids, and our kid's kids, will never get to see such majestic creatures. The only exotic animals to see would be in zoo's, and extinct in the wild. No safari's, no whale-watching, in the near future there will be none of this. Unless we make an effort and try our best, this will occur, sooner rather than later. We need nature.
Things are becoming worse. Hopes are disappearing. If we are going to act, it has to be now. As these words are being read, and animal is dying from habitat loss, poaching, or pollution. We have to do something, before it's too late. The time is passing, and efforts are being doubled to save our only home. You need to help, reader, and if we all work together, we can accomplish our dream of a perfect environment for the generations to come. But the fairy-tale happy ending won't come unless we all give what we have to enforce the laws of preservation for our Earth, and believe it can be accomplished. You know how bad it is, and that's why we must all make an effort to do what we believe to be right, because it's our earth to save!
More Then a Wild Dog
Wolves are fascinating, social creatures, worthy of more then they receive. There are many different kinds of wolves, large and small, suited for their particular environment. They also have many methods of communication, not just verbal sounds, that allow them to better interact with pack mates. Wolves are truly beneficial canines, for they give more to their environment then one might suspect.
There is more then just one kind of wolf. In fact, there are many! The general scientific name for a wolf is Canis. The two main species of wolf are the Gray wolf Canis lupus, which lives in Idaho, Colorado, and other US states, and the Red wolf Canis rufus, which lives in coastal North Carolina. And there are more then just those two species, for the Canis lupus, Gray wolf, has subspecies too! Some subspecies are the Artic Wolf Canus lupus arctos, which lives in the Arctic and Alaska, the Great Plains wolf Canus lups nubilus, and the Mexican wolf Canis lupus bailey.
Contrary to common assumptions, wolves don't howl at the moon. Howling is a way of communication and strengthening pack bonds. Some other ways that wolves communicate is through body language. For example, a raised tail signals that the wolf is dominant, and active submission is when a wolf arches it's back and tucks its tail between it's legs. A higher form of active submission is passive submission. That is when the wolf rolls over onto it's back and tucks it's paws up at it's chest, exposing it's vulnerable throat and belly. A muzzle bite is when a higher-ranked wolf gently bites the muzzle of a lower ranked wolf to assure the lower wolf of it's position.
Wolves have a large positive impact on their environment. For example, when wolves were introduced to Yellowstone National park, they hunted the abundant elk that had grazed the fields to the point that they were barren. Due to the wolves, the elk avoided certain areas where they would be most easily captured, and those areas in turn regenerated. The regenerating forest led more birds, and beavers to eat the new trees. The dams that the beavers built formed ponds for otters, muskrats, fish, and amphibians to live in. The wolves also killed coyotes, which led to the rabbit and mice population to rise, thus leading to more hawks, foxes and weasels. Clearly, wolves are very beneficial.
It is up to us to make sure that wolves survive as a species, for every kind of wolf—from Canis lupus to Canis rufus, are uniquely important. They are fascinating to study, and rewarding to preserve. Without wolves, the prey population such as elk would rise, and strip fields barren, leaving other primary consumers without food. They have proved themselves just as worthy of occupying land as humans have, for their unintentional impact surpasses the intentional ones of humans. They give life to land, rather then deplete it. If we could see wolves in a new light, then perhaps their species would flourish.