Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 2

Extinction Related Abstracts

2 Desertification of Earth and Reverting Strategies

Authors: V. R. Venugopal

Abstract:

Human being evolved 200,000 years ago in an area which is now the Sahara desert and lived all along in the northern part of Africa. It was around 10,000 to15,00 years that he moved out of Africa. Various ancient civilizations – mainly the Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Indus valley and the Chinese yellow river valley civilizations - developed and perished till the beginning of the Christian era. Strangely the regions where all these civilizations flourished are no deserts. After the ancient civilizations the two major religions of the world the Christianity and Islam evolved. These too evolved in the regions of Jerusalem and Mecca which are now in the deserts of the present Israel and Saudi Arabia. Human activity since ancient age right from his origin was in areas which are now deserts. This is only because wherever Man lived in large numbers he has turned them into deserts. Unfortunately, this is not the case with the ancient days alone. Over the last 500 years the forest cover on the earth is reduced by 80 percent. Even more currently Just over the last forty decades human population has doubled but the number of bugs, beetles, worms and butterflies (micro fauna) have declined by 45%. Deforestation and defaunation are the first signs of desertification and Desertification is a process parallel to the extinction of life. There is every possibility that soon most of the earth will be in deserts. This writer has been involved in the process of forestation and increase of fauna as a profession since twenty years and this is a report of his efforts made in the process, the results obtained and concept generated to revert the ongoing desertification of this earth. This paper highlights how desertification can be reverted by applying these basic principles. 1) Man is not owner of this earth and has no right destroy vegetation and micro fauna. 2) Land owner shall not have the freedom to do anything that he wishes with the land. 3) The land that is under agriculture shall be reduced at least by a half. 4) Irrigation and modern technology shall be used for the forest growth also. 5) Farms shall have substantial permanent vegetation and the practice of all in all out shall stop.

Keywords: Desertification, Extinction, micro fauna, reverting

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1 Cycads Bark Harvest in Limpopo Province in South Africa: A Negative Practice Contributing to Biodiversity Loss

Authors: S. O. Bamigboye, P. M. Tshisikhawe, P. J. Taylor

Abstract:

Cycads are the most threatened plant species in the world. In South Africa over 70% of cycads are threatened with extinction with 60% of them as a result of bark harvest of these highly endangered species for medicinal purposes. 3 cycads species in South Africa have gone extinct due to bark harvest for medicinal purpose. This practice keeps increasing biodiversity loss within the nation and this has generated concern for conservationists on different way to discover how people go about this practices and how it can be discouraged. Studies have revealed this practice to be common practice in provinces like Kwazulu natal, Eastern cape, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, but studies in the past have not really focused on cycads bark harvest in Limpopo province. In this study we use the indigenous knowledge to discover a particular location within the Soutpansberg Montane (a major biodiversity hotspot in Limpopo Province in South Africa) in Vhembe district in Limpopo province not yet conserved where we have a highly disturbed population of cycads. Several individuals of cycads species have been highly damaged due to bark harvest in this location. We are about proposing that such areas needs attention for conservation to prevent the loss of these species endemic to this particular location. Our study hereby reveals that cycads bark harvest which is a major threat to African cycads is also a common practice in Limpopo Province in South Africa. Rigorous conservation action is required to discourage this practice in order to prevent further biodiversity loss in this region.

Keywords: Conservation, Extinction, bark harvest, Cycads, Limpopo

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