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True Story:

At the height of World War II, in 1942, the British Navy had a sudden breakdown in radio communications. The British became convinced that it was a German trick. It turned out to be disturbances caused by sunspots over 93 million miles away.

The True Story of Black Hawk Down from the A&E Video Store.

Cosmos Collector's Edition Boxed set - VHS
Carl Sagan's COSMOS is one of the most influential science programs ever made.

Q. Does the moon have a dark side?

A. The moon does have a far side which is impossible to see from the earth, but it doesn't mean that it's always dark. Each side of the moon is dark for no longer than 15 days at a time.

Q. Where does sound come from?

A. The air is always filled with sound waves. All things give off vibrations, but some have a low frequency which most cannot hear. The reason: it may take 3 minutes to make a single vibration. They may be caused by earthquakes and storms.

Extinction of Wildlife

The dodo bird once inhabited the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. After man introduced the pig to the island, as well as being hunted by man, the dodo became extinct around 1680. Today, the California condor is being threatened. The condor was a common inhabitant of the North American mountains in earlier days, but approximately forty condors in southern California are the last of their kind. The tapir of South America and Southeast Asia is a rare sight, coming out only at night. The tapir is also facing extinction.

It has been the history of life on this planet for some species to live, while others have died out. It happens to plants as well as to animals, because their habitats are altered by the presence of mankind. During the Pleistocene period, it is believed that around thirty per cent of the large mammals in Africa and seventy percent of North American mammals were killed by the hunters of that time. The latest estimates of damage: up to sixty-two species of mammals are gone, and at least fifty-three, perhaps ninety-four bird species have vanished.

Many factors contribute to wildlife extinction, but by far the most damage comes from mankind's clearing of the habitats of species in order to grow crops. When plants used by animals as food becomes scarce, so go the animals. One such disaster was the Large Copper butterfly. Collectors were over zealous for specimens and caused the extinction of this butterfly in the 1840's.

Many wild plants have natural immunities that may be used for the benefit of agriculture. If there is cross-breeding, or genetic engineering, the helpful traits of these wild plants may be transferred to cultivated plants. It is thought to help improve a plant's photosynthesis process, help plants absorb nitrogen from the surrounding air, and change it into nutrients. If the wild plants die out, their helpful services will die with them. The main cause of extinction, mankind, may find himself becoming extinct with the availability of the plants, which they rely on for many living processes.

Science is attempting to find the cause of diseases and pests in animals and crops by studying the natural communities. Ecologists are studying these communities to learn how they operate and what may be done to keep them healthy. Only history will know if the current projects were started soon enough to prevent the extinction of plants and animals, especially the species of mankind.


1. Shreeve, Tim. Discovering Ecology. Sceptre Books Ltd: London. 1982

Further Study:

WBRC Homepage
The Wildlife Breeding and Resource Center for conservation of animals. Programs and aims.



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