Which species remotely resemble a fly?


After a quarter of a century, the Nature Conservation Act is being reformed again. In a partial accident, I ended up compiling the University of Helsinki’s statement on the draft law.

An experienced professor, who was not born in Finland, was surprised when he found out that the species protection clauses do not apply to fish. The Fisheries Act is responsible for soothing endangered fish species as well as leatherback and crab.

Under the Nature Conservation Act, mammals and birds are protected, with the exception of game species and non-protected species. In addition, other endangered animals and plants are listed in the Nature Conservation Regulation. The Hunting Act lists non-sedentary species and defines the rules for sedation of game species. Species defined as harmful alien species in the European Union Alien Species Regulation and the National Regulation are treated in part as non-sedentary species.

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The most confusing group are endangered species under the Nature Conservation Regulation. They are, as a rule, species that have been assessed as endangered in the threat assessment. These are, of course, not congruent lists: all endangered species have been assessed as endangered, but not all species assessed as endangered are endangered species.

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The classification of organisms is not always logical. Author Jorge Luis Borges created an imaginary ancient Chinese classification of animals: it included, among others, animals belonging to the emperor, embalmed animals, domesticated animals, animals that had just created their skins, and distantly fly-like species.

The listing is absurd because it categorizes species inconsistently with each other. It sounded funny to me before I got acquainted with Finnish legislation.

The Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture and Forestry stumbled upon the classification of species because it decided that the goldfinch, which is slowly establishing itself in Finland, is a harmful alien species. However, this was a fussy bet, because an animal that has run to Finland with its own feet cannot be a harmful alien species. For this reason, the golden cabbage arriving in Finland across the border is currently calmed down.

If one wanted to shoot a golden goblet, it should be made a game species in the hunting law. However, stocks of game species need to be managed sustainably, so if gold cabbage is made a game species, its stock must be at a sustainable level.

Despite its complexity, classification works well because it protects the golden cup.

Tuomas Aivelo is a postdoctoral researcher in ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Helsinki.


Source: Tiede by www.tiede.fi.

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