Captive Breeding - Measures for Species Conservation
Species which are reduced to dangerous levels need more intensive management, and one strategy is their captive breeding. It means, the eggs from the nests of endangered birds are taken and hatched in captivity. Such attempts have been successful with California condor and several species of cranes. Captive breeding in zoos, animal breeding parks, and research centres has also been attempted with some success. For example, the Arabian oryx became extinct in the wild by the mid-1960s, and captive breeding was attempted and a few animals produced were released in the reserves. Some species such as Cheetah, Pandas, Cranes, Bats and Penguins are not inclined to breed in captivity. So techniques like artificial insemination and many others are used.
A major goal of captive breeding programme is the eventual release of species back into the wild. It has been found that the individuals that are released are especial vulnerable. They must face all the dangers that occur in small populations; in addition, since they have been raised in captivity they frequently fail to develop vital behavioural patterns such as those necessary for finding food. So when left in wild many animals die on their release. Despite all this, if the natural habitats of species are destroyed, zoos and animals breeding parks may be the last refuge for some wildlife species.