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South American Wild Cats Find Hope in a Test Tube

South American Wild Cats Find Hope in a Test Tube

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become extinct, looms over, hugely, has been addressed, mere

Since time immemorial felines have been venerated in America, North and South. Their shapes appear engraved on ancient artifacts and in the form of modem statues. But in the last century, jaguars, pumas and other American felines have declined alarmingly in number. So much so, that they may become extinct. As a result, researchers in Spain and Argentina have embarked on a project for the preservation of ten feline species in Latin America. For the next three years, they will be working on the creation of two genetic banks one in Madrid and the other in Buenos Aires, to keep away the threat that looms over these animals.

This threat comes from human activity. Since 1920, the population of Latin America has tripled to 480 million people. A quarter of the forest area has disappeared, and activities such as hunting, fishing, mining and farming intensify human impact on the environment, so that the natural habitat of these species has been hugely reduced. The reduction of the habitat reduces the population.

So far, the problem has been addressed by introducing new animals into each region, with problems of transport and adaptation leading to poor chances of success. Now, the plan is to apply assisted reproduction techniques, fertilizing females with semen from males from other regions, including various zoos in Argentina and Spain. Scientists hope that, a few decades into the future, the words jaguar or puma may be more than mere names and memories.

In your own words and based on the ideas in the text, answer the following questions. (?)

a) Why has the number of felines in South America fallen recently?

The number of felines has decreased because human activities such as mining or hunting have reduced their natural habitat in the forest, and this implies the reduction of the feline population. destacar parrafo

Ayuda: La respuesta la encontramos en el segundo párrafo, que nos explica las causas de la caída en el número de la población de animales salvajes.

Vocabulario: "has decreased": ha disminuido; "such as ": como por ejemplo; "this implies":esto implica.

b) How do Spanish and Argentine scientists plan to help endangered felines?.

Scientists from these two countries will use assisted reproduction techniques, that is, they will create two genetic banks from which female animals will be fertilized with semen from males.destacar parrafo

Ayuda: La respuesta se presenta ya en el primer párrafo pero se desarrolla en el tercer párrafo, en el que nos especifica el procedimiento de la técnica de reproducción asistida que se empleará con las hembras

Vocabulario:"male": macho ; "female": hembra ; "that is": es decir ; "will be fertilized": serán fecundadas.

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