评论:可爱的otters和穿山甲得到了拯救,但丑陋的动物是一个丢失的保护事业吗?
Commentary: Cute otters and pangolins get saved but are ugly animals a lost conservation cause?

Commentary: Cute otters and pangolins get saved but are ugly animals a lost conservation cause?

评论:可爱的otters和穿山甲得到了拯救,但丑陋的动物是一个丢失的保护事业吗?

两位生态学家说,如果动物仅因为它们的吸引力和吸引力而得到保护,我们就会忽视它们生长的生态系统的复杂性。

幼崽的档案照片。(照片: OtterWatch)

新加坡: 2017年,在湾边的加德斯,当一名运动员有点法国女孩时,许多观察者将事故归咎于人类过于接近野生动物的防御行为。

如果这是在这种情况下的大砍刀,我们希望对该动物的看法不会那么同情。

同样,游泳者在水路上游泳也是一个受欢迎的景象,许多人公开拍照,并在社交媒体上发布。

如果在水路上安息,动物关切研究和教育协会(ACRES)和国家公园委员会(NParks)将接到移除蛇的电话。

我们城市居民甚至可能不具备应对这种情况的能力。新加坡害虫管理协会(Singapore Pest Management Association)去年9月承认,害虫公司“缺乏野生动物的处理能力” 。此前,大量人员从排泄物中大致移除了一条烟火。

评论:我们是否不擅长处理我们所走过的野生动物?

:新加坡城市化程度如何使新加坡学会与野生动物共处

强调这些情况的目的不是批评投票人,也不是批评给予他们的偏见。新加坡对这些武器的保护是一项国际成功和民族自豪感。

由于数十年来为清理新加坡以前被污染的水道所做的努力,投票人已经从当地灭绝的边缘走向今天不断增长的人口。今天,当地人和外国人都继续欢欣鼓舞地看到他们。

保留中的各项准则

我们提出这些相似之处的原因是,要了解造成这种差别待遇的因素是什么,为什么这样做是危险的。

小鹰派在姐妹岛屿海洋公园海滩上的小鹰派海龟,就在它回到大海之前。(照片:公园)

在保护方面存在着一种倾向,倾向于吸引人的有魅力的物种,这些物种吸引或吸引人的动物。想大熊猫、孟加拉虎和海龟吧。

虽然关于魅力在多大程度上有利于动物获得资金或支持的数据很少,但世界各地的动物保护者都提到,很难让人们关心不太知名的物种。

伦敦动物学会发现,在跟踪的"进化独特和全球濒危"物种中, 70%以上没有得到足够的保护关注。

评注:天空晴朗和野生物回返的奇迹是我们新的气候问题

这些独特的物种往是进化线的最后幸存成员,跨越哺乳动物、鸟类、两栖动物、爬行动物,甚至珊瑚。

该协会还发现,一半以上的EDGE哺乳动物受到的关注程度低或很低,但其他三分之二的EDGE珊瑚受到忽视的情况更为严重。拯救这些物种的行动计划缺乏或过时,或者很少或根本没有得到研究。

在新加坡,一些充满魅力但又受到严重威胁和具有生态重要性的物种包括沿海围网(Dipteris confrogata)和马芝麻蟹。

评论:返还野生动物背后的真相不如你想象的那么美好。

ECOLOGY is more plex

优先重视有魅力的物种可能歪曲环境状况,因为只有众所周知和资金充足的物种得到研究,足以被列为"濒危"物种。

但是,如果只有魅力的物种因为其外表和吸引力而得到保护,我们就会忽视其繁华的生态系统的复杂性。

2020年10月22日,在新加坡的一个公园里,一只老虎条纹蝴蝶在花朵的项链上觅食。(照片:法新社/ Roslan RAHMAN)

许多人可能熟悉极度濒危的穿山甲,甚至Raffles的班底语言的困境,但也有一些人可能不太了解我们正在消失的昆虫。在本世纪全世界面临灭绝的100万个动物和植物种中,有一半是昆虫。

在新加坡,自19世纪50年代以来,我国本土蝴蝶几乎有一半在当地灭绝,主要原因是砍伐森林。

除了飞翔的蝴蝶外,许多其他昆虫也发挥着重要的生态作用。它们不只是授粉我们吃的水果和蔬菜;常见的甲虫、苍蝇和蟑螂通过分解有机物质使土壤保持健康。这一过程允许分解,并将养分循环到土壤中。

许多有魅力的动物也依赖昆虫作为食物来源,例如,本地穿山甲依靠蚂蚁和白蚁。

READ :评注:分享可爱的异国情调动物图案的问题

除了无脊椎动物外,真菌、植物和微生物也是同一生态系统的一部分,贡献甚至更多。

红树林是如此丰富的生态系统的一个主要例子,也是一个重要的碳存放处。据新加坡国立大学地理学家Dan Friess博士说, "他们每公顷可储存的碳比其他类型的森林(通常)多3至5倍" 。

他指出,与雨林和热带生境等其他碳汇相比,在应对气候变化的过程中,红树林和海草往被忽视。

READ :新加坡红树林如何在应对气候变化的斗争中做出贡献

就连我们所憎恶的生物也发挥着关键作用。科学家呼吁保护工作包括寄生虫,因为只查明了大约10%的寄生虫物种。

使用显微镜的人的档案照片(MARCO BERTORELO / AFP)

寄生虫通过防止生态系统中任何物种的过度种群提供生态平衡。他们可能被视为疾病携带者和疾病原因,但只有4%的人是以这种身份行事的。

网络生态的风险

尽管如此,魅力动物在养护工作中占有如此突出的地位是有原因的。

这些动物具有广泛的吸引力,可有效地用于争取公众对更广泛的生物多样性目标的支持。

象和海龟这样的濒危动物是主要物种或伞式物种。保护他们将资源和支助引向保护他们的生境,这对他们没有魅力的对应方有利。

评论:老虎属于野兽,而不是我们的家、街道或农场。

然而,事实是,没有多少有魅力的物种是对生态系统完整性至关重要的基石物种。

优待有魅力的物种,有可能使生物多样性养护变成仅是动物保护,不再是生态保护。

即使我们延长富有魅力的受威胁物种的生存期限,但从长远来看,忽视其他吸引力较弱的野生物和它们所依赖的生境,也不能保证它们免于灭绝。

从更广泛的角度来看,被忽视的关键物种将消失,我们的绿色和蓝色空间也将消失,因为有太多的资源用于保护一些可爱和狡猾的动物的种群。如果我们继续保持我们对野生动物保护的短视愿景,任何东西都不会得到保存。

评论:让新加坡的绿色空间变得疯狂。

今后的挑战

气候变化将是我们面临的一项重大挑战。CNA金融公司(Federal Reserve Bank ,简称CNA金融公司)报告称,如果我们一切照旧,新加坡多达一半的野生动物种可能在本世纪末消失。

气候变化:新加坡多达一半的野生动物种可能会在本世纪末消失。

Sungei Buloh湿地保护区的红树林。(照片: NParks Facebook)

保护自然,而不仅是少数物种,是气候变化减缓战略的一部分,这就是为什么基于自然的气候变化解决办法越来越受欢迎的原因。

新加坡的科学家正在研究如何保护成熟的红树林,消除我们排放的大量二氧化碳。这些森林还支持渔业,保持海岸线完好无损,最终惠及其他居民,如水手。

我们在生物多样性方面的教育努力也应转向野生物生态,而不是少数选定的物种,这项工作需要在我们的学校课程中从上游开始。

评论:这个新成立的可持续发展和环境部看起来很有希望。

此外,重点必须转向当地物种和生境。新加坡人很容易认出一个angutan或giraffe ,但不会认出一个colugo或穿山甲。

如果东方的尖角放在路边的树上,你更有可能听到好奇的路人高声说这是一把触摸车。

另一些时候,在木板路的阳光下旋转的监视器可能会吸引对Komodo龙的出现感到惊讶的焦虑的声音。

评论:希望对动物提供更有力的保护?增强动物福利团体开展执法工作的能力

一个完整的企业实体

最近NParks将新加坡从"花园城"转变为"自然之城"的任务发生了变化,这是值得称赞的。更重要的是,这标志着对大自然对我们的意义的看法发生了转变。

仅在我们的人造环境中添加绿色植物或保护少数濒危动物是不足以建成"大自然之城"的。我们必须开始把自然理解为一个包罗万象的实体,而不是整个部分。

这种理解对于确保所有将新加坡称为家园的野生物都有前途,包括其生态系统至关重要。这样,我们就可以享受与自然和谐相处的好处。

Andie Ang是新加坡野生动物保护区保护基金的研究科学家和Jane Goodall研究所长(新加坡)。Karl Png是新加坡青年生物多样性之声的共同创始人。

If animals received protection only because of their attractiveness and appeal, we will ignore the complexity of the ecosystems in which they thrive, say two ecologists.

SINGAPORE: In 2017, when an otter bit a French girl in Gardens by the Bay, many observers attributed the accident to defensive behaviour as humans got too close to a wild animal.

If it was a macaque in the scenario, we would expect less sympathetic comments towards the animal.

Similarly, otters swimming in waterways are a welcome sight, with many members of public snapping photos and posting them on social media.

If a python were resting in the waterways instead, Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) and National Parks Board (NParks) would be receiving calls to remove the snake.

We urban folk may not even be equipped in dealing with such situations. The Singaporean Pest Management Association in September admitted pest companies were "lacking in the handling of wildlife", after a clip of personnel roughly removing a python from a drain went viral.

READ: Commentary: Are we inept at handling wild animals that come our way?

READ: IN FOCUS: How urbanised Singapore is learning to live with its wildlife

The point of highlighting these scenarios is not to criticise otters nor the bias afforded to them. Their conservation in Singapore is an international success and a national pride.

Thanks to decades-long efforts of cleaning up Singapore's formerly polluted waterways, otters have gone from the brink of local extinction to today's growing population. Catching a glimpse of them today continues to delight locals and foreigners alike.

THE BIAS IN CONSERVATION

The reason we raise these parallels is to make sense of what factors drive this differential treatment, and why it is dangerous to do so.

There is a bias in conservation towards charismatic species compelling or charming animals that inspire devotion in people. Think giant panda, Bengal tiger and sea turtle.

While there is scarce data on how much charisma favours animals in getting funding or support, conservationists worldwide cite the difficulties of getting people to care about less well-known species.

The Zoological Society of London found that of the "evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered" (EDGE) species tracked, more than 70 per cent do not receive enough conservation attention.

Commentary: The wonder of clear skies and returning wildlife is our new climate problem

These unique species often the last surviving members of an evolutionary line span mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and even corals.

The Society also found that more than half of EDGE mammals get low or very low attention, but it is worse for other groups two thirds of EDGE corals are being neglected. The action plan to save these species is lacking or outdated, or they receive very little to no research.

In Singapore, some charisma-challenged yet highly threatened and ecologically important species include the coastal fern (Dipteris conjugata) and horseshoe crabs.

READ: Commentary: The truth behind returning wildlife is less feel-good than you think

ECOLOGY IS MORE COMPLEX

The prioritisation toward charismatic species could misrepresent the status of the environment, as only well-known and well-funded species are studied enough to be listed as "endangered".

But if only charismatic species receive protection because of their attractive appearance and appeal, we will ignore the complexity of the ecosystems in which they thrive.

Many may be familiar with the plight of the critically endangered pangolin or even the Raffles' banded langur, but some may be less aware of our vanishing insects. Of the 1 million animal and plant species around the world facing extinction in this century, half are insects.

Here in Singapore, almost half our native butterflies have gone locally extinct since the 1850s, mainly due to deforestation.

Apart from the fluttering butterflies, many other insects perform vital ecological roles. They don't just pollinate the fruits and vegetables we eat; the common beetles, flies and cockroaches keep soils healthy by breaking down organic material. This process allows decomposition to occur and recycles nutrients back into the soil.

Many charismatic fauna also depend on insects as a food source the native pangolin, for instance, feeds on ants and termites.

READ: Commentary: The problem with sharing cute exotic animal pics

Beyond the invertebrates, fungi, plants and the microorganisms are part of the same ecosystem and contribute as much or even more.

Mangroves are a prime example of such a rich ecosystem, and also serve as a significant repository of carbon. According to geographer Dr Dan Friess of National University of Singapore, "they can store three to five times more carbon per hectare than other forest types (typically) do".

He noted that mangroves and also seagrasses are often neglected as compared to other carbon sinks such as rainforests and tropical habitats in the fight against climate change.

READ: How Singapore's mangroves can contribute in the battle against climate change

Even the organisms we detest play a critical role. Scientists have called for conservation efforts to include parasites, since only about 10 per cent of parasite species have been identified.

Parasites provide ecological balance by preventing the overpopulation of any species in an ecosystem. They may be despised as carriers of diseases and causes for illnesses, but only 4 per cent of them act in that capacity.

RISKS OF NEGLECTING ECOLOGY

Nonetheless, there's a reason why charismatic animals feature so prominently in conservation efforts.

These animals have widespread popular appeal and can be used effectively to garner public support for wider biodiversity goals.

Some endangered animals like elephants and sea turtles serve as flagship or umbrella species. Protecting them channels resources and support into preserving their habitats, which benefits their non-charismatic counterparts.

READ: Commentary: Tigers belong in the wild, not in our homes, the streets or farms

However, the truth is that not many charismatic species are keystone species, which are essential to the integrity of the ecosystem.

Preferential treatment toward charismatic species runs the risk of turning biodiversity conservation to solely animal protection, which is no longer ecology.

Even if we stretch the survival of charismatic threatened species, in the long run, neglecting the other less appealing wildlife and habitats they depend on will not guarantee their safety from extinction.

From a broader picture, the neglected keystone species will fade, so will our green and blue spaces, as too much resources go to preserving the populations of a few cute and cuddly animals. Nothing will be preserved if we continue our myopic vision for wildlife conservation.

READ: Commentary: Let Singapore's green spaces grow wild

THE CHALLENGE AHEAD

Climate change is going to be a major challenge for us. CNA reported that up to half of Singapore's wildlife species could vanish by the end of the century if we go about business as usual.

WATCH: Climate change: Up to half of Singapore's wildlife species could disappear by end of century | Video

The preservation of nature and not just a few species is part of the climate change mitigation strategies which is why nature-based solutions to climate change have been gaining traction.

Scientists in Singapore are studying how protecting mature mangrove forests could remove the large amounts of carbon dioxide we emit. These forests also support fisheries and keep coastlines intact, ultimately benefitting other inhabitants like otters.

Our education efforts about biodiversity should also pivot towards the ecology of wildlife, rather than a few selected species, and this undertaking needs to start upstream in our school curriculum.

READ: Commentary: This new Ministry of Sustainability and Environment looks pretty promising

Additionally, the emphasis has to turn to local species and habitats. Singaporeans can easily identify an orangutan or a giraffe but not a colugo nor a pangolin.

If an oriental pied hornbill is to perch on a roadside tree, you are more likely to hear curious passers-by exclaim that it is a toucan.

Other times, a monitor lizard basking in the sun on a boardwalk may attract anxious voices surprised by the presence of a Komodo dragon.

READ: Commentary: Want stronger protection for animals? Empower animal welfare groups to carry out enforcement

NATURE AN ALL-ENCOMPASSING ENTITY

The recent change in NParks mission to transform Singapore from a "Garden City" into a "City in Nature" is applaudable. More importantly, this marks a shift in perspective on what nature means to us.

Simply adding greenery in our built environment or conserving a few endangered animals is not enough for a "City in Nature". We must begin to understand nature as an all-encompassing entity instead of parts of a whole.

This understanding is crucial in ensuring all wildlife that call Singapore home have a future, including their ecosystems. We can then enjoy the benefits of living in harmony with nature.

Andie Ang is Research Scientist at Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund and President of Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore). Karl Png is Co-founder of Singapore Youth Voices for Biodiversity.

If animals received protection only because of their attractiveness and appeal, we will ignore the complexity of the ecosystems in which they thrive, say two ecologists.

两位生态学家说,如果动物仅因为它们的吸引力和吸引力而得到保护,我们就会忽视它们生长的生态系统的复杂性。

File photo of otter pups. (Photo: OtterWatch)

幼崽的档案照片。(照片: OtterWatch)

SINGAPORE: In 2017, when an otter bit a French girl in Gardens by the Bay, many observers attributed the accident to defensive behaviour as humans got too close to a wild animal.

新加坡: 2017年,在湾边的加德斯,当一名运动员有点法国女孩时,许多观察者将事故归咎于人类过于接近野生动物的防御行为。

If it was a macaque in the scenario, we would expect less sympathetic comments towards the animal.

如果这是在这种情况下的大砍刀,我们希望对该动物的看法不会那么同情。

Similarly, otters swimming in waterways are a welcome sight, with many members of public snapping photos and posting them on social media.

同样,游泳者在水路上游泳也是一个受欢迎的景象,许多人公开拍照,并在社交媒体上发布。

If a python were resting in the waterways instead, Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) and National Parks Board (NParks) would be receiving calls to remove the snake.

如果在水路上安息,动物关切研究和教育协会(ACRES)和国家公园委员会(NParks)将接到移除蛇的电话。

We urban folk may not even be equipped in dealing with such situations. The Singaporean Pest Management Association in September admitted pest companies were "lacking in the handling of wildlife", after a clip of personnel roughly removing a python from a drain went viral.

我们城市居民甚至可能不具备应对这种情况的能力。新加坡害虫管理协会(Singapore Pest Management Association)去年9月承认,害虫公司“缺乏野生动物的处理能力” 。此前,大量人员从排泄物中大致移除了一条烟火。

READ: Commentary: Are we inept at handling wild animals that come our way?

评论:我们是否不擅长处理我们所走过的野生动物?

READ: IN FOCUS: How urbanised Singapore is learning to live with its wildlife

:新加坡城市化程度如何使新加坡学会与野生动物共处

The point of highlighting these scenarios is not to criticise otters nor the bias afforded to them. Their conservation in Singapore is an international success and a national pride.

强调这些情况的目的不是批评投票人,也不是批评给予他们的偏见。新加坡对这些武器的保护是一项国际成功和民族自豪感。

Thanks to decades-long efforts of cleaning up Singapore's formerly polluted waterways, otters have gone from the brink of local extinction to today's growing population. Catching a glimpse of them today continues to delight locals and foreigners alike.

由于数十年来为清理新加坡以前被污染的水道所做的努力,投票人已经从当地灭绝的边缘走向今天不断增长的人口。今天,当地人和外国人都继续欢欣鼓舞地看到他们。

THE BIAS IN CONSERVATION

保留中的各项准则

The reason we raise these parallels is to make sense of what factors drive this differential treatment, and why it is dangerous to do so.

我们提出这些相似之处的原因是,要了解造成这种差别待遇的因素是什么,为什么这样做是危险的。

The baby hawksbill turtle on the beach at Sisters' Islands Marine Park, just before it went back into the sea. (Photo: NParks)

小鹰派在姐妹岛屿海洋公园海滩上的小鹰派海龟,就在它回到大海之前。(照片:公园)

There is a bias in conservation towards charismatic species compelling or charming animals that inspire devotion in people. Think giant panda, Bengal tiger and sea turtle.

在保护方面存在着一种倾向,倾向于吸引人的有魅力的物种,这些物种吸引或吸引人的动物。想大熊猫、孟加拉虎和海龟吧。

While there is scarce data on how much charisma favours animals in getting funding or support, conservationists worldwide cite the difficulties of getting people to care about less well-known species.

虽然关于魅力在多大程度上有利于动物获得资金或支持的数据很少,但世界各地的动物保护者都提到,很难让人们关心不太知名的物种。

The Zoological Society of London found that of the "evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered" (EDGE) species tracked, more than 70 per cent do not receive enough conservation attention.

伦敦动物学会发现,在跟踪的"进化独特和全球濒危"物种中, 70%以上没有得到足够的保护关注。

Commentary: The wonder of clear skies and returning wildlife is our new climate problem

评注:天空晴朗和野生物回返的奇迹是我们新的气候问题

These unique species often the last surviving members of an evolutionary line span mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and even corals.

这些独特的物种往是进化线的最后幸存成员,跨越哺乳动物、鸟类、两栖动物、爬行动物,甚至珊瑚。

The Society also found that more than half of EDGE mammals get low or very low attention, but it is worse for other groups two thirds of EDGE corals are being neglected. The action plan to save these species is lacking or outdated, or they receive very little to no research.

该协会还发现,一半以上的EDGE哺乳动物受到的关注程度低或很低,但其他三分之二的EDGE珊瑚受到忽视的情况更为严重。拯救这些物种的行动计划缺乏或过时,或者很少或根本没有得到研究。

In Singapore, some charisma-challenged yet highly threatened and ecologically important species include the coastal fern (Dipteris conjugata) and horseshoe crabs.

在新加坡,一些充满魅力但又受到严重威胁和具有生态重要性的物种包括沿海围网(Dipteris confrogata)和马芝麻蟹。

READ: Commentary: The truth behind returning wildlife is less feel-good than you think

评论:返还野生动物背后的真相不如你想象的那么美好。

ECOLOGY IS MORE COMPLEX

ECOLOGY is more plex

The prioritisation toward charismatic species could misrepresent the status of the environment, as only well-known and well-funded species are studied enough to be listed as "endangered".

优先重视有魅力的物种可能歪曲环境状况,因为只有众所周知和资金充足的物种得到研究,足以被列为"濒危"物种。

But if only charismatic species receive protection because of their attractive appearance and appeal, we will ignore the complexity of the ecosystems in which they thrive.

但是,如果只有魅力的物种因为其外表和吸引力而得到保护,我们就会忽视其繁华的生态系统的复杂性。

A tiger striped butterfly feeds on nectar from a flower at a park in Singapore on Oct 22, 2020. (Photo: AFP/Roslan RAHMAN)

2020年10月22日,在新加坡的一个公园里,一只老虎条纹蝴蝶在花朵的项链上觅食。(照片:法新社/ Roslan RAHMAN)

Many may be familiar with the plight of the critically endangered pangolin or even the Raffles' banded langur, but some may be less aware of our vanishing insects. Of the 1 million animal and plant species around the world facing extinction in this century, half are insects.

许多人可能熟悉极度濒危的穿山甲,甚至Raffles的班底语言的困境,但也有一些人可能不太了解我们正在消失的昆虫。在本世纪全世界面临灭绝的100万个动物和植物种中,有一半是昆虫。

Here in Singapore, almost half our native butterflies have gone locally extinct since the 1850s, mainly due to deforestation.

在新加坡,自19世纪50年代以来,我国本土蝴蝶几乎有一半在当地灭绝,主要原因是砍伐森林。

Apart from the fluttering butterflies, many other insects perform vital ecological roles. They don't just pollinate the fruits and vegetables we eat; the common beetles, flies and cockroaches keep soils healthy by breaking down organic material. This process allows decomposition to occur and recycles nutrients back into the soil.

除了飞翔的蝴蝶外,许多其他昆虫也发挥着重要的生态作用。它们不只是授粉我们吃的水果和蔬菜;常见的甲虫、苍蝇和蟑螂通过分解有机物质使土壤保持健康。这一过程允许分解,并将养分循环到土壤中。

Many charismatic fauna also depend on insects as a food source the native pangolin, for instance, feeds on ants and termites.

许多有魅力的动物也依赖昆虫作为食物来源,例如,本地穿山甲依靠蚂蚁和白蚁。

READ: Commentary: The problem with sharing cute exotic animal pics

READ :评注:分享可爱的异国情调动物图案的问题

Beyond the invertebrates, fungi, plants and the microorganisms are part of the same ecosystem and contribute as much or even more.

除了无脊椎动物外,真菌、植物和微生物也是同一生态系统的一部分,贡献甚至更多。

Mangroves are a prime example of such a rich ecosystem, and also serve as a significant repository of carbon. According to geographer Dr Dan Friess of National University of Singapore, "they can store three to five times more carbon per hectare than other forest types (typically) do".

红树林是如此丰富的生态系统的一个主要例子,也是一个重要的碳存放处。据新加坡国立大学地理学家Dan Friess博士说, "他们每公顷可储存的碳比其他类型的森林(通常)多3至5倍" 。

He noted that mangroves and also seagrasses are often neglected as compared to other carbon sinks such as rainforests and tropical habitats in the fight against climate change.

他指出,与雨林和热带生境等其他碳汇相比,在应对气候变化的过程中,红树林和海草往被忽视。

READ: How Singapore's mangroves can contribute in the battle against climate change

READ :新加坡红树林如何在应对气候变化的斗争中做出贡献

Even the organisms we detest play a critical role. Scientists have called for conservation efforts to include parasites, since only about 10 per cent of parasite species have been identified.

就连我们所憎恶的生物也发挥着关键作用。科学家呼吁保护工作包括寄生虫,因为只查明了大约10%的寄生虫物种。

File photo of a person using a microscope (MARCO BERTORELLO / AFP)

使用显微镜的人的档案照片(MARCO BERTORELO / AFP)

Parasites provide ecological balance by preventing the overpopulation of any species in an ecosystem. They may be despised as carriers of diseases and causes for illnesses, but only 4 per cent of them act in that capacity.

寄生虫通过防止生态系统中任何物种的过度种群提供生态平衡。他们可能被视为疾病携带者和疾病原因,但只有4%的人是以这种身份行事的。

RISKS OF NEGLECTING ECOLOGY

网络生态的风险

Nonetheless, there's a reason why charismatic animals feature so prominently in conservation efforts.

尽管如此,魅力动物在养护工作中占有如此突出的地位是有原因的。

These animals have widespread popular appeal and can be used effectively to garner public support for wider biodiversity goals.

这些动物具有广泛的吸引力,可有效地用于争取公众对更广泛的生物多样性目标的支持。

Some endangered animals like elephants and sea turtles serve as flagship or umbrella species. Protecting them channels resources and support into preserving their habitats, which benefits their non-charismatic counterparts.

象和海龟这样的濒危动物是主要物种或伞式物种。保护他们将资源和支助引向保护他们的生境,这对他们没有魅力的对应方有利。

READ: Commentary: Tigers belong in the wild, not in our homes, the streets or farms

评论:老虎属于野兽,而不是我们的家、街道或农场。

However, the truth is that not many charismatic species are keystone species, which are essential to the integrity of the ecosystem.

然而,事实是,没有多少有魅力的物种是对生态系统完整性至关重要的基石物种。

Preferential treatment toward charismatic species runs the risk of turning biodiversity conservation to solely animal protection, which is no longer ecology.

优待有魅力的物种,有可能使生物多样性养护变成仅是动物保护,不再是生态保护。

Even if we stretch the survival of charismatic threatened species, in the long run, neglecting the other less appealing wildlife and habitats they depend on will not guarantee their safety from extinction.

即使我们延长富有魅力的受威胁物种的生存期限,但从长远来看,忽视其他吸引力较弱的野生物和它们所依赖的生境,也不能保证它们免于灭绝。

From a broader picture, the neglected keystone species will fade, so will our green and blue spaces, as too much resources go to preserving the populations of a few cute and cuddly animals. Nothing will be preserved if we continue our myopic vision for wildlife conservation.

从更广泛的角度来看,被忽视的关键物种将消失,我们的绿色和蓝色空间也将消失,因为有太多的资源用于保护一些可爱和狡猾的动物的种群。如果我们继续保持我们对野生动物保护的短视愿景,任何东西都不会得到保存。

READ: Commentary: Let Singapore's green spaces grow wild

评论:让新加坡的绿色空间变得疯狂。

THE CHALLENGE AHEAD

今后的挑战

Climate change is going to be a major challenge for us. CNA reported that up to half of Singapore's wildlife species could vanish by the end of the century if we go about business as usual.

气候变化将是我们面临的一项重大挑战。CNA金融公司(Federal Reserve Bank ,简称CNA金融公司)报告称,如果我们一切照旧,新加坡多达一半的野生动物种可能在本世纪末消失。

WATCH: Climate change: Up to half of Singapore's wildlife species could disappear by end of century | Video

气候变化:新加坡多达一半的野生动物种可能会在本世纪末消失。

Mangroves at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve. (Photo: NParks Facebook)

Sungei Buloh湿地保护区的红树林。(照片: NParks Facebook)

The preservation of nature and not just a few species is part of the climate change mitigation strategies which is why nature-based solutions to climate change have been gaining traction.

保护自然,而不仅是少数物种,是气候变化减缓战略的一部分,这就是为什么基于自然的气候变化解决办法越来越受欢迎的原因。

Scientists in Singapore are studying how protecting mature mangrove forests could remove the large amounts of carbon dioxide we emit. These forests also support fisheries and keep coastlines intact, ultimately benefitting other inhabitants like otters.

新加坡的科学家正在研究如何保护成熟的红树林,消除我们排放的大量二氧化碳。这些森林还支持渔业,保持海岸线完好无损,最终惠及其他居民,如水手。

Our education efforts about biodiversity should also pivot towards the ecology of wildlife, rather than a few selected species, and this undertaking needs to start upstream in our school curriculum.

我们在生物多样性方面的教育努力也应转向野生物生态,而不是少数选定的物种,这项工作需要在我们的学校课程中从上游开始。

READ: Commentary: This new Ministry of Sustainability and Environment looks pretty promising

评论:这个新成立的可持续发展和环境部看起来很有希望。

Additionally, the emphasis has to turn to local species and habitats. Singaporeans can easily identify an orangutan or a giraffe but not a colugo nor a pangolin.

此外,重点必须转向当地物种和生境。新加坡人很容易认出一个angutan或giraffe ,但不会认出一个colugo或穿山甲。

If an oriental pied hornbill is to perch on a roadside tree, you are more likely to hear curious passers-by exclaim that it is a toucan.

如果东方的尖角放在路边的树上,你更有可能听到好奇的路人高声说这是一把触摸车。

Other times, a monitor lizard basking in the sun on a boardwalk may attract anxious voices surprised by the presence of a Komodo dragon.

另一些时候,在木板路的阳光下旋转的监视器可能会吸引对Komodo龙的出现感到惊讶的焦虑的声音。

READ: Commentary: Want stronger protection for animals? Empower animal welfare groups to carry out enforcement

评论:希望对动物提供更有力的保护?增强动物福利团体开展执法工作的能力

NATURE AN ALL-ENCOMPASSING ENTITY

一个完整的企业实体

The recent change in NParks mission to transform Singapore from a "Garden City" into a "City in Nature" is applaudable. More importantly, this marks a shift in perspective on what nature means to us.

最近NParks将新加坡从"花园城"转变为"自然之城"的任务发生了变化,这是值得称赞的。更重要的是,这标志着对大自然对我们的意义的看法发生了转变。

Simply adding greenery in our built environment or conserving a few endangered animals is not enough for a "City in Nature". We must begin to understand nature as an all-encompassing entity instead of parts of a whole.

仅在我们的人造环境中添加绿色植物或保护少数濒危动物是不足以建成"大自然之城"的。我们必须开始把自然理解为一个包罗万象的实体,而不是整个部分。

This understanding is crucial in ensuring all wildlife that call Singapore home have a future, including their ecosystems. We can then enjoy the benefits of living in harmony with nature.

这种理解对于确保所有将新加坡称为家园的野生物都有前途,包括其生态系统至关重要。这样,我们就可以享受与自然和谐相处的好处。

Andie Ang is Research Scientist at Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund and President of Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore). Karl Png is Co-founder of Singapore Youth Voices for Biodiversity.

Andie Ang是新加坡野生动物保护区保护基金的研究科学家和Jane Goodall研究所长(新加坡)。Karl Png是新加坡青年生物多样性之声的共同创始人。