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A Boise State professor looks to history to save animals on the brink of extinction

A family group of seven tan and white vicuna stand in tall brown and green grass in front of a high rocky slope.
Emily Wakild
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A vicuna family unit grazing in Pampa Galeras, Puru, 2009.

In the last 500 years, more than 1,000 animals and plants have gone extinct. Many scientists say we’re in earth’s sixth mass extinction.

Many species, such as the passenger pigeon, can no longer be found on our planet and more are on the brink of going extinct every day.

Two researchers wanted to know what lessons could be learned from past extinctions, and from some of the success stories, that could be applied to animals in trouble today.

They have published a set of essays looking at specific animals under threat of extinction in the journal Environmental History titled “Extinction and its Interventions in the Americas.”

Co-author Emily Wakild, professor of history and director of environmental studies at Boise State University, joins Idaho Matters to talk about the forum.

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As Senior Producer of our live daily talk show Idaho Matters, I’m able to indulge my love of storytelling and share all kinds of information (I was probably a Town Crier in a past life!). My career has allowed me to learn something new everyday and to share that knowledge with all my friends on the radio.