When humans occupy an area, they can often find themselves sharing it with wild animals. The term wildlife refers to undomesticated animal species, and includes everything from birds in the sky to fish in the sea. It includes all terrestrial and aquatic creatures, but excludes pets and livestock. Wild animals can be found throughout the world, in deserts, grasslands, forests, and more.
Historically, wild animals have been valuable resources for people. They have provided food, sport and recreation, and are important in maintaining ecological balance. Wildlife has also become a major economic resource, especially in developing countries.
The value of wildlife has led to laws and policies to protect and conserve them. Governments set hunting seasons, bag or catch limits, and licensing requirements. They also set aside parks and preserves for the protection of these animals. These policies and regulations are the foundation of modern conservation and preservation efforts.
Humans also have a very deep fascination with the natural world and its many wild creatures. This is reflected in the popularity of nature shows and documentaries on television. The first wildlife programs to be broadcast were the National Geographic specials, which aired on CBS in 1965. A few years later NBC debuted the popular wildlife series LOOK, featuring host Marlin Perkins. The British natural history program Zoo Quest was a similar early show that featured host David Attenborough.
As a result of human demands and interference with natural habitats, several wild animal species have become extinct, while others are on the brink of extinction. Various factors contribute to this, such as hunting, loss of habitat due to agriculture, settlement, and other developmental activities, pollution, and over-exploitation for their meat, bones, fur, skin, and other body parts.
There are some examples of species that have evolved to benefit mankind, such as coyotes that help control a rodent population, black drongos that keep cattle free from insect pests, and beavers that build dams and canals to prevent flooding. However, some of these animals may be considered nuisances by some people. This is particularly true of carnivores that prey on livestock and pets, plants like poison ivy that invade homes, and wild animals that endanger moving vehicles.
Many people are concerned about the decline of wild animal populations. They want to preserve the rich biodiversity that our planet has to offer, and they also believe that it is important for humanity to learn how to live with the creatures of this earth. To accomplish this goal, we must understand the value of a healthy ecosystem and the interdependence of all living things on it. This will lead to a better quality of life for all. It is time for us to move from an era of ignorance and indifference about the importance of preserving wildlife, to one that recognizes that all species are valuable and need our care.