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(Photo Credit: Tim Howard)

Fighting to protect a species is one thing, but what if that species is all but gone -- can you bring it back?  Should you? Or, as Holly Doremus and Josh Donlan argue, have we already changed our world so dramatically that the only way forward is to accept that Nature will never be how it was?  And Gisella Caccone explains how, at least on Pinta Island, we may be able to take the past...and raise it from the dead.

Comments [10]

Paul from Tulsa, OK

A fascinating and encouraging piece about the resurrection of the Pinta Tortoise. I simply cannot wait until the next time I'm engaged in one of those conversations about the strangest job I've ever heard of, to which I will confidently contribute the Galapagos Tortoise Masturbator!

Mar. 12 2016 04:55 PM

Couldn't say it better than Krakena! So disappointing to condone such waste.

Jan. 19 2016 10:37 PM
Robert Leith

Just listened to Galapagos piece. As is usual, Jad Abumrad can't string together three sentences without saying like. This and many NPR programs have presenters who use "valley girl" speech. This unprofessional and annoying.

Dec. 21 2014 03:34 PM

This sounds familiar - 'Eugenics':

Dec. 21 2014 12:55 PM
Krakena from Greater Boston, MA

What have we being doing all these centuries with our brains, to rampantly slaughter a populous local species considered having less value than one in danger of extinction? I think the turtles did need intervention to survive. I am just appalled at the methods apparently intelligent, compassionate conservationists used to achieve it.

It took 8 years to agree on a solution to save the turtles, and that was to kill the goats? While goats were a problem on Galapagos they had value to those who need food and consume goat meat. I almost cried during the killing segment, thinking of all the good 100,000 live goats could do in meat and food- starved countries or selling them to farms that raise goats. The 19th century sailors were smarter than our modern day conservationists. As harsh as exporting 100 giant turtles upside down in the hold of a ship was, at least they kept them alive until needed for food.

The finch segment was very good and insightful. We as smart humans with smart science tend to think we have the answers to other species' problems. Yet the scientists when unable to breed flies in the lab, could not think of creating a controlled outside breeding environment like beekeepers maintain. And they were quite surprised when they found 2 finch species had interbred for survival when humans did and do the exact same thing.

Dec. 20 2014 05:34 PM

Just listened to this and got really excited because I SAW LONESOME GEORGE LOSE HIS VIRGINITY. I was actually on a trip to the Galapagos led by the all girls Catholic school I was attending when George finally went for one of the lady turtles. I thought that maybe he got a wiff of hormones from the 20 or so girls who were peering into his little habitat and that's what got him in the mood. Anyway it was probably the most significant event I have witnessed. The tour guide was on the brink of tears. I took photos.

Oct. 03 2014 02:49 AM
Anthony L from Austin, TX

For anyone wondering, the song at the end is Stars of the Lid - Articulate Silences, Part 2 (maybe some Part 1 too, kinda hard to tell), from the album And Their Refinement of the Decline (2006).

Jul. 29 2014 12:37 AM

Is this it? it sounds very similar..

Jul. 27 2014 08:35 PM
Matt Barnlund

I second Cheryl's comment above: someone please post the track title & artist. Many many thanks!

Jul. 25 2014 04:22 PM

What is the music during the last bit of this piece? It's beautiful. (Also sounds slightly familiar, at least in style, but I can't place it.)

Jul. 25 2014 03:29 PM

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