Tanzania is perhaps the best place in Africa – and maybe in the world – to study conservation and biodiversity. Tanzania’s mountains, savannas, coral reefs, miombo woodlands, tropical montane forests, and mangrove swamps provide the habitat diversity needed to support a wide range of flora and fauna, including several endemic species of birds, orchids, and chameleons. Topic 4 looks at strategies used to conserve living organisms and the interaction of those strategies with the people living in and around targeted landscapes. With the diversity of Tanzania’s national parks, reserves, and wildlife management areas, this topic will require extensive research into a local case study, with findings presented to classmates in preparation for the IB ESS exam.
Chapters 5 and 6 of the ESS Course Companion correspond with the material in Topic 4.
Objectives (Students will be able to…)
- Define the terms biodiversity, genetic diversity, species diversity and habitat diversity.
- Explain the relationships among ecosystem stability, natural selection, diversity, succession and habitat.
- Evaluate the biodiversity and vulnerability of ecosystems based on various species’ conservation status and case histories of species threatened with extinction.
- State the arguments for preserving species and habitats, evaluating the criteria and relative strengths and weaknesses of species-based conservation strategies.
- Compare and contrast the role and activities of intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations in preserving and restoring ecosystems and biodiversity.
Resources and Notes
- ESS Topic 4.1 – Biodiversity in Ecosystems notes
- Living National Treasures – A list of flora and fauna native to Tanzania
- ESS Topic 4.2 – Evaluating Biodiversity and Vulnerability notes
- ESS Topic 4.3 – Conservation of Biodiversity notes
- Kentucky’s first grey wolf in 150 years shot by hunter – Relevant news from my home in the U.S.
- Armageddon for animals in forest fragments: Research paints dire picture for wildlife unless large habitats are kept intact
- The Convention on Biological Diversity’s Tanzania page – Some specific information and numbers on biodiversity in this amazing country.
- National Geographic’s awesome spread on lions in the Serengeti
- Biodiversity’s link to deforestation, carbon sequestration, and human livelihoods in Tanzania. (PDF)
- Poachers in Tanzania are well-connected
- Elephant poaching graphic from National Geographic
- Keep checking! I’ll continue to add things here…