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Reviving Times Long Past: Bringing Extinct Species Back To Life

Many species have called planet Earth home throughout many ages. They have thrived and lived throughout Earth’s history, even before mankind. However, mother nature can be cruel and wipe away all members of an entire species, leading to extinction. Unsustainable human activity can also lead to the extinction of many present-day species. But hope lives on in our ever-expanding and improving technology. One day, science will resurrect long-forgotten members of the animal kingdom.

So how exactly would this be accomplished? According to Visual Capitalist, it would involve an extinct animal's DNA. However, they also state that DNA has a half-life of 521 days before it is completely eradicated. This leaves no hope for dinosaurs as they have been dead for far too long for any of their DNA to still exist. It also restricts this idea to only recently extinct species, such as the dodo bird. Once their DNA is acquired, cloning, genome editing, and back-breeding can be used to bring back species. However, out of all three methods, cloning is the only one that technically revives an extinct species; the others simply replicate them as closely as possible. Despite all the research already done, much more will be required as no scientist has successfully reintroduced an extinct species back into the living world.

But is reviving extinct species really a good idea? For very recently extinct species, the answer is yes. These animals can be reintroduced to ecosystems and food chains they were meant to be in, restoring balance in nature. This is especially helpful if the animals are keystone species. However, for organisms that have been dead for quite a while is a different story. These animals may no longer fit in ecosystems that have evolved to work without them. Reintroducing them might produce catastrophic results as they might as well be invasive species. In any case, we must be careful not to disturb current-day ecosystems.

Reviving extinct species is a likely prospect in the near future. Technology will one day allow us to see long-forgotten animals again. But this science comes at the cost of responsibility, which we must respect.


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