Monday, October 27, 2008

california condor

yunfei zheng

California condor is one of the endangered birds. They feed on carcasses. The bird “can weigh up to 25 pounds and stand 45 to 55 inches tall, with a wingspan of 9.5 feet”. In this article, the author says that the number of this bird dropped to 21 or 22 in the late 1980s. A lot of scientists organized together and tried to find the reasons. They find that it is because people hunt them for food and some other use toxic bullet. “People used condor feathers to make fancy hats for women or someone just hunt them for food. It made the loss of habitat. The poison bullets used by people to kill some other animals also cause the death of California condor since they eat the carcass, if the carcass has poisons in it, California condor may get infected. Our government has been trying to stop the decrease by passing some bills for a long time; “they have spent tens of millions of dollars to bring the bird back from the brink of extinction.” They also have found some new problems through the process of rescuing. The bird needs more help.

We are facing a very serious problem. We can’t just watch it but must do something to change the situation. Here are some things that we should do now. Firstly, we should stop hunting for them. Second, stop using poisonous pesticide such as DDT or toxic bullet to kill other animals. Third, help the California condor to get a comfortable place to live where they can find enough food and has mild weather. Here are the details for these solutions.

Firstly, hunting has already decimated large numbers of California condors. People hunt them for their own benefit. In this case, our government can pass some laws to stop it. The laws can be like “if anyone keeps on hunting for California condor, they will be sent to the jail. If anyone sells the California condor’s feathers on the market or uses them to make clothes, they will be fined with a sum of money and also be sent to prison.” In this case, most hunters will stop hunting because of the strict law.

Second, we should stop using poison like pesticide DDT or toxic bullets to kill animals. We can make some traps to catch the injurious animals instead of poison them to death. In this way, there is no toxic element in the dead animals’ carcasses; California condors can eat them safely. Or we can try to find some new medicine what have no harm for California condors. It requires a lot of scientists’ hard work. So, our government should organize them to start the project.

Third, we should create a comfortable environment for them to live. In the past few years, we have destroyed many of their habitats. It makes the birds have nowhere to live. That’s very bad, especially when they can’t find a place to breed. They may die out in a very short time. So what we need to do is to restore their habitats first. And then, we can do some captive breeding to accelerate the speed of the birth. This is a fast thing we can do to save them. The captive breeding requires that we know the habit of the bird such as the best time for it to breed and the conditions they must have for pregnancy. It determines the results of the program.

Though we have a long way to go, if everyone makes a contribution to the California condor, the goal is not far away.

Jarre Fees. (2008, October, 13) Saving the condor; KQED-TV Pobes the deaths of continent’s largest flying birds Environmental journalism-NEWSPRO; Pg. 50
Retrieved: October 22, 2008, from Lexis Nexis