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Name: Alicia Furlano
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Why are some endangered species protected by law and some are not?

Different countries have different laws. A species that is protected in one country may not be protected in another. This is a real problem for birds that spend winter is South America and summer in Canada, and fly over the United States in fall and spring. The United Nations tries to get similar laws passed in all countries so that species are protected the same everywhere. Other reasons why some species are not protected is that they may not even have been discovered yet, or there is disagreement over the size of the species' population, or there is no scientific count of the population size.

An example of the first problem is the burning of tropical rainforests, where large pieces of habitat and the species that depend on it may be quickly converted to agricultural land before any scientist has studied the plants and animals that live there. An example of the second problem is the conflict between Norwegian and Russian fisherman over the size of the codfish population (and the size of each other's annual harvest). Even if a species is protected by law, it may not be protected from law-breakers.


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