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Endangered Species

November 02, 1998

The high rate of plant and animal extinction is alarming. In the United States alone, more than 1,000 species are endangered or threatened due to causes such as habitat loss, pollution and the introduction of new species. To learn more about endangered species, use the direct links on the Times Launch Point Web site.

Level 1

Wild Child: What endangered animal has excellent eyesight, is a vegetarian and lives in South America? The spectacled bear or tremarctos ornatus, of course! Read profiles of endangered animals, have scientists answer your questions and try some projects that teach you about wildlife and conservation.

En Espanol:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Kid's Corner: What can kids do to help save endangered species? Become a junior wildlife biologist by reading some creature features and testing your knowledge with games.

Lucky Duck's Home: Sea otters lay on their backs and use their stomachs as tables while they eat. View pictures of this critter and many other endangered animals and learn about how they live.

Level 2

The American Museum of Natural History's Endangered Species Exhibit: Not all endangered species become extinct; some species recover through protective efforts. Learn about endangered habitats, check out a useful glossary and read the success story of Meeps Island's flying frog.

Endangered Species: Biodiversity means "variety of life." Find out why biodiversity is so important, why many animals and plants are endangered, and how the Endangered Species Act of 1973 works.

Ecoregions From Sea to Sea: Learn about the 10 most-wanted animals and marine creatures on the planet. Checkout the many different species on the Galapagos Islands, global warming and what you can do.

Level 3

Endangered Species and Habitats: Habitat loss causes 75% of the specie extinctions today; much of the destruction is due to human activity. Learn why endangered species are important and find out ways you can help.

Welcome to Bagheera!: The loss of a single species can affect the health of an entire ecosystem. Learn about the many factors contributing to today's high rate of extinction, find out what actions zoos and aquariums are taking to help species survive and try some projects that help you examine the issues.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service: Examine current data on individual endangered plants and animals, analyze state specie lists and read current legislative policies on these issues.

EXPLORER'S QUEST: What is the difference between an endangered species and a threatened species?

CLUE: See Endangered Species

Find What You Need to Know: Have a project on California history? Need help doing a math problem? Launch Point now covers more than 50 topics for getting your schoolwork done. Go to for the full list of subjects and direct links to the best Internet sites.

Answer to last week's Quest: Computer scientists need at least four years of high school math, beginning with two years of algebra, one year of geometry and one year of pre calculus.


For more information on how today's topic affects Orange County, see the Beyond 2000 story on A1.

Launch Point is produced by the UC Irvine department of education, which reviews each site for appropriateness and quality. Even so, parents should supervise their children's use of the Internet. This column was designed by Frank Padilla, Katie Salles, Tracy Yamamoto , Heeron Kim, Minyoung Bae, Anh Nugyen and Anna Manring.

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