Habitat Threats

Long-footed Potoroo [Potorous longipes]
© Environment East Gippsland 2010 ^http://www.eastgippsland.net.au/

Australia’s Long-footed Potoroo is endemic to Australia (found nowhere else in the wild) and is listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List due to threats of habitat degradation and fox and wild dog predation.  Its habitat destruction is being driven by policies and practices of State-sanctioned logging, bush arson, bushfire neglect by successive Labor and Liberal Victorian Governments.

This species has only three known small populations on the planet- around the Barry Mountains in NE Victoria, around Brown Mountain in East Gippsland and in the south-east forests of New South Wales.
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Habitat Threats

 
 

Many different harmful human activities pose threats to native habitats around the world.  Cumulatively these threats, which translate into actual habitat destruction and death to wildlife, cause local and global extinctions to many wildlife species.   It is a global ecological and moral priority for humanity to stop, prevent and reversing its anthropocentric destructionism.

The array of threats are numerous.  The types of threats may be grouped in various ways.  We have adopted the following logical groupings, while recognising that this list is not exhaustive.

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Types of Habitat Threats

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NOTE:     > = link to internal webpage    ^ = link to external website

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01.  >Threats to Wild Tasmania *

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02. >Threats from Bushfire

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03. >Threats from ‘Darkside’ Ecologists

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04. >Threats from Deforestation

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05. >Threats from Development

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06.  >Threats from Disease

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07. >Threats from Dumping

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08. >Threats from Farming

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09. >Threats from Ferals and Predators

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10. >Threats from Fishing

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11. >Threats from Government Funding Neglect

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12. >Threats from Government Mismanagement

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13. >Threats from Greenwashing

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14. >Threats from Groundwater Tampering

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15. >Threats from Hydro and Dams

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16. >Threats from Mining

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17. >Threats from Overpopulation

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18. >Threats from Poaching and Poisoning

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19. >Threats from Pollution

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20. >Threats from Road Making

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21. >Threats from Selling Public Land

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22. >Threats from Sewage

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23. >Threats from Tourism and Recreation

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24. >Threats from Urban Runoff

 

25. >Threats from Utility Corridors

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26. >Threats from War

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27. >Threats from Weak Conservation Laws

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28. >Threats from Weeds

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29. >Threats from Wildlife Pet Industry

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30.  >Threats from Zoos and Circuses

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* NOTE:   Wild Tasmania is a special focus of The Habitat Advocate because of the high conservation value of forest ecology coupled with it being threatened by industrial logging, broadscale State-sanctioned arson, and mining.  These threats continue to cause irreversible destruction to Tasmania’s ecology and are driving fauna extinctions.

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Each of these threats will be defined and fully explained in due course in our respective webpages, with each threat above linked to its own webpage.

So what is being done about these threats?

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Immature Responses:

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  • Do nothing – like most busy people, who self-justify other priorities?
  • Presume that the environmental department of government will act appropriately to mitigate the threat?
  • Protest to the perpetrators, who defend, demean and greenwash?
  • Write to a local paper, which attracts local interest for a few days, until supplanted by another issue, then is soon forgotten?
  • Protest to a local politician, who smiles and adds it to their wishlist, below their personal wishlist?
  • Join or form an action group, which lasts as long as the leader’s stamina, then which typically fades into disenchantment?
  • Seethe in frustration, like most?

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…so what is the resultant on-ground outcome experienced from having adopted any of these options?

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Mature Responses:

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Be realistic and pragmatic.  Taking on any of these threats is a significant undertaking in cultural change.  So it presents a ‘David and Goliath’ struggle, which likely will endure many battle losses over a lifetime.

Yet, with hope, determination, respect, empathy, and with an effective methodology, overcoming such threats is feasible.  Overcoming such threats and reversing species extinction is possibly the most ethically noble and selfless cause.  Success is serene justice.

To be effective, one should reside in the comfort that the task of challenging such threats does not require a millionaire or one with astute political training.  Historically,  the task of challenging such threats is typically lead by ordinary (yet passionate) people who realise the injustice must be stopped, who are persistent and who get organised and become effective advocates.

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‘Habitat Threat Analysis’

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Our methodology in tackling habitat threats involves a number of approaches (‘methodologies‘) which stem from our philosophies and aspirations for habitat conservation.

A key methodology we use is what we term ‘Habitat Threat Analysis’.  Habitat Threat Analysis is a logical investigative methodology that captures information relating to an issue (e.g. Deforestation of Brown Moutain) and integrates that information to enable efficient and effective insight, analysis, problem solving and to develop reform initatives.

To facilitate Habitat Threat Analysis, we recognise that the realm of habitat conservation is broad reaching, complex and involves a matrix inter-relationship between:

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Habitat Threats      (Level 5)
Habitat Causes           (Level 4)
Habitat Issues                (Level 3)
Habitat Campaigns          (Level 2)
Campaign Episodes            (Level 1)

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Without a logical organised dichotomy of these ‘levels’ of conservation subject matter, the organisation, retrieval and analysis of the captured information can quickly become inefficient, chaotic and overwhelming.

This demands that we organise the scope of Habitat Threat Analysis into a ‘Threat Response Framework‘.  This is a simple hierarchy of these five dimensions.

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Threat Response Framework:

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Level 5:   Habitat Threats [human culture-based activity which threatens, or causes actual harm to, wildlife habitat]

(e.g human activities such as deforestation, road making, poaching, etc.)

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Level 4:  Habitat Causes [species/ecosystem-based conservation focus]

(e.g. saving Redgum forest ecosystems)

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Level 3:   Habitat Issues [problematic impact of a habitat threat associated with a habitat cause]

(e.g. logging of old growth forests)

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Level 2:  Habitat Campaigns [place-based environmental activism over a period of time, usually involving multiple episodes of activism.]

(e.g. Protesting to save Upper Florentine old growth forests from logging)

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Level 1:  Campaign Episodes [a time-specific event, associated with specific habitat campaign.  Similar events reoccur, like episodes.]

(e.g. VicForests in Environment East Gippsland in Australia onground protesting in November 2009 at Brown Mountain in East Gippsland against VicForests attempt to log old growth forests).

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‘Resource Modules’

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For each Habitat Campaign, we organise information into Resource Modules in order to facilitate efficient retrieval of information, to utilise for greater insight, analysis, problem solving, campaigning and to develop reform initiatives.

  1. Campaigns
  2. Impacts and Issues
  3. History and Similar Campaigns
  4. Industry, Law Structure and Policies
  5. Conservation Groups’s Approaches
  6. Research and Reviews
  7. Problem Solving
  8. Reform Initiatives
  9. Reference

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The Habitat Advocate is thus organised along this Threat Response Framework.

Articles covering Habitat Threats are accessible on the right hand column, under the heading:    ‘Habitat Threats – all articles’

We recognise that this methodology is just one approach to tackle human threats to wildlife habitat.