The red wolf or ‘canis niger’ was declared in 1967 as one of the more endangered species under the Endangered Species Act or ESA, wherein there were less than 100 individuals that remained usually in Texas and southwestern Louisiana (Brownlow 391). They were captured in the ‘70s for breeding purposes under the ESA, and by 1980 it was considered as one of the extinct species (Browlow 391). Of the 400 wolves, only 40 remained pure for breeding purposes, which were then distributed to national parks (391).
By 1993, it was said that the red wolf had grown in population, which numbered to 247 wolves at most, wherein 187 of those were in captive breeding while the rest were in the wild (391). As of early 1990s, the hybrid nature and species status of the red wolf were questioned, as specialists studied the biological and physiological characteristics of the said species. They had noted that there was definitely “the unquestionable presence and influence of coyote genetic material within the red wolf genome” (392).
Because of this, a controversy erupted on whether the red wolf should be listed and preserved under the ESA, especially that it could be a threat to livestock; yet, there was not yet enough evidence to suggest or prove that it should not be preserved under the ESA. Researchers since then had battled on the red wolf being listed under the ESA for the purpose of breeding and species preservation. It had been proven that the solution lies on the molecular taxonomy of the red wolf.
The molecular techniques prove that taxonomy and systematics are very important on the issue of whether to preserve species, since these are considered by many as the ‘bricks’ of biological science. There are certain methods that are used here, such as the use of DNA analyses (e. g. , polymerase chain reaction) that separate and identify certain species from the others. Through scrutiny, hybrid events could be identified, which is being increased because of the continuation of hybrid loss and population fragmentation among species.
This was what has been happening in the case of the red wolf, wherein sympatric carnivores in small population sizes were being facilitated through the use of hybridization. However, it can also destroy the purity of the endangered population by introducing another genetic material from outside the species, which can lead to further extinction, especially with the loss of fitness. Molecular techniques, such as the one used in taxonomy and systematics, could resolve issues of hybridization identification, with data that hugely supports hybrid policies like the ESA.
However, the presence of controversy and negative perceptions could threaten the conservation of species, such as in the case of the red wolf. For this, taxonomy identity appears to be the relevant solution to the case, with wolf-coyote hybridization data to claim whether species, especially carnivores, should be under delistment under the ESA. This mirrors the reality that, despite the big numbers, funds are usually limited, and this leads to controversy between scientific communities, since preservation legislation follow a method that is basically species-specific.
Subspecies should not be contaminated to preserve purity. Alexander Brownlow’s content and style is one that reflects high level of knowledge and comprehension of the topic. The case reflects that species conservation is directly being connected to allotment of resources and funds, revealing the limited amount of funds that the country allots, especially on the side of the carnivores. Hybridization should be developed all the more and recognized for a more well-rounded scrutiny on whether to enlist specific species under the ESA.
Brownlow’s article is indeed, well written and well thought of. Definition 1. Based on the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, the term hybrids refers to “an offspring of two animals or plants of different races, breeds, varieties, species, or genera. ” 2. Based on the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, a coyote is “a buff gray to reddish-gray North American canid (Canis latrans) closely related to but smaller than the wolf. ” 3. Based on the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, the word taxonomy refers to “the study of the general principles of scientific classification. ” 4.
Based on the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, the word systematics refers to “the classification and study of organisms with regard to their natural relationships. ” 5. Based on the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, sympatric means “occupying the same geographical range without loss of identity from interbreeding. ” Works Cited Brownlow, C. Alexander. “Molecular Taxonomy and the Conservation of the Red Wolf and Other Endangered Carnivores. ” Conservation Biology 10. 2 (1996): 390-13. “Coyote. ” Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary. 2008. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. 30 October 2008 <http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/coyote>.
“Hybrids. ” Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary. 2008. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. 30 October 2008 <http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/hybrids>. “Sympatric. ” Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary. 2008. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. 30 October 2008 <http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/sympatric>. “Systematics. ” Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary. 2008. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. 30 October 2008 <http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/systematics>. “Taxonomy. ” Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary. 2008. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. 30 October 2008 <http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/taxonomy>.Sample Essay of BuyEssay.org