What happens when wild animals accustomed to living in wide open spaces have to live within restricted boundaries? Find out when Frontiers travels to Hluhluwe-Umfolozi and Mkuze Parks in South Africa, which serve as a model for other African countries. Scientists have been dealing with complex issues of water, fire and vegetation problems for over a decade. Their experiences offer lessons in advanced wildlife management and hint at what the future holds for wildlife everywhere.
Activity: Wildlife Challenge
SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY & SOCIETY
SOCIAL STUDIES, TECHNOLOGY
ACTIVITY: WILDLIFE CHALLENGE
Read the following hypothetical scenario and prepare your response.
Apply critical thinking skills to a decision-making scenario and strategically communicate information.
People in your town have voted to replace an old zoo - the free Municipal Zoo - with a new conservation park that is considered by educators and animal rights activists to be more "humane to animals." Not everyone agrees with the decision, and many people have argued in favor of keeping the old zoo, if only to preserve fond memories.
Nevertheless, the citizens passed legislation to build new structures and replace old ones. The conservation park will be built on a tract of land that is currently the site of closed but re-toolable factories. The entire project will cost taxpayers about $25 million and take five years to complete.
Upon completion, the park will offer a protected and natural habitat for animals currently housed in the Municipal Zoo. The park will also maintain breeding populations of several endangered species.
Owners of the new park would like to save money by reducing the staff, if that is possible. Funds needed for this project will be "trimmed" from a variety of ongoing social projects in the town and raised from a bond issue in the upcoming election. Additional money will be obtained by introducing an admission price of $5 per person. The developers of the new park hope to raise much of the money to keep the costs down, and also provide educational classes and other opportunities for local students.
Imagine that you are employed as a speech writer for a mayoral candidate. The candidate informs you that she wishes to gain support for establishing the new park as part of her platform.
Your job is to write a speech she can deliver to various audiences.
The mayoral candidate first wants you to evaluate the different audiences she will face in her upcoming campaign. To each group, she must present as much of the above scenario as possible. Your first assignment is to critically analyze the list of audiences and prepare three to four points the candidate can make in support of the new conservation park, with the particular audiences in mind.
Another part of your job is to assist with raising funds for the new park; you have been promised a bonus if your candidate gets into office and another bonus if you are successful in raising money. How will you make your pitch to these audiences?
- unemployed factory workers
- local tourism committee
- animal rights activists
- low-income families
- science teachers
- investors in local manufacturing
- workers currently employed at the Municipal Zoo)
- Design an advertisement that could be published in the local newspaper that would encourage support for this project. Alternatively, design a home page for the park's new Web site.
- Suppose you were allowed to redesign this zoo project. Describe the five most important parts of your new zoo's philosophy. Which things about the current proposal would you keep? Which things would you get rid of? How? Present your design and policy statements and any pertinent research and interviews in a display (use a presentation board if you wish).