You've probably heard the slogan "save the whales". Do you know why the slogan began? It started as a protest from people who wanted to ban whale hunting. Some types of whales are among the hundreds of endangered species. Many people believe that it is important to save endangered species to maintain the balance of nature. Already some species are extinct. Among them are passenger pigeon, dodo bird, and Labrador duck. Of course, dinosaurs are extinct, too. But dinosaurs did not disappear because of humans. Today, as the human population increases all over the planet earth, less and less space remains for other species to live in their natural habitats. Species become endangered for many reasons, and they are all related to humans. For example, we cut down forests, and thus destroy the natural habitats of forest animals. We hunt,for fun, enjoyment, or excitement, some animals to their extinction, or near extinction. We kill to get animal products, such as bones or furs. Since the 19th century, people have been trying to protect wildlife with special programs. The Endangered Species Act was passed in 1973, and by 1998, less than 1000 animal species were listed as endangered. Such animals as giant pandas and tigers are on the top. These species not only needs special measures and extra protection in order to survive, they also serve as umbrella species. Helping them helps numerous other species that live in the same habitats. We must ensure that the planet earth our children inherit will be home to elephants, tigers, giant pandas, whales and other wildlife specie as well as humans.

Question 23: Why did people put up the slogan "save the whales"?

Question 24: Which of the following is NOT a cause for the extinction of many a species?

Question 25: When was the Endangered Species Act passed?

Question 26: What is typical of umbrella species?

Q23,本篇开头即指出It started as a protest from people who wanted to ban whale hunting,即由于鲸鱼面临灭绝,有关人士采取抗议行动,要求制止捕鲸。

Q24,文中提到的造成种群灭绝的原因包括滥砍滥伐(deforestation),捕猎(hunting),捕杀以获取动物制品(kill to get animal products)等,所有原因均与人类活动有关。


Q26,在对umbrella species的解释中明确提到helping them helps numerous other species that live in the same habitat.