When you think of conservation, what comes to mind? While scientists, activists and non-profits are all pieces in the puzzle, conservation at its core is not an industry. Rather, it’s a mindset and lifestyle that anyone can participate in at any time. Basically, it’s people passionate about protecting our planet, and everyone from scientists to citizens has a role to play!
What Is Conservation?
Though the definition of conservation varies based on who you ask, when dealing with the natural world conservation refers to the careful protection and strategic management of species and the environment. In Fossil Rim’s case, we conserve species from around the world, as well as native Texas species and land. However, the actions that go into conservation don’t always have to be as big as transporting animals around the world.
In contrast, they can be as small as planting a native flora species in your yard, keeping a healthy distance from wildlife, or donating time or money to an organization. In any case, the more individuals participate in conservation in small ways, the more healthy our planet will become.
There is a lot of stigma around who gets to participate in conservation, but this process is by no means an all-or-nothing one. In reality, there is no perfect way to protect nature, but taking practical steps that make sense for your life can make a huge difference.
Who Gets to Participate?
In conservation, there is the role of the individual, the organization, and of course, the government. On one hand, the government has the power to create laws and unite with other countries to make sweeping changes. On the other hand, organizations have the power to work within those countries, lobby governments and be the groups who help carry out large scale plans. Individuals, however, arguably play the biggest role of all.
You not only get to make choices about which organizations you support, but get to be the recipients and implementers of many changes. Making small sustainable changes in your life not only contributes to conservation, but helps normalize it. Certainly, the more interest you take, the more organizations will be able to work, the more notice leaders will take, and the more positive the results will become.
How Can I Become a Conservationist?
So, what does it look like to participate in conservation at home? In general, the answer depends on a lot of factors, including where and how you live. As a matter of fact, any sustainable decision you make, like composting or switching to reusable products, counts towards conservation. Still, deciding to make eco-friendly choices does not mean you need to change everything about your daily habits. On the contrary, fully immersing themselves into a sustainable lifestyle just isn’t practical, for a lot of reasons. Finding the right balance for your family is just as valuable as those who are able to do a little more with their time and money.
Of course, if you find yourself especially passionate, you can consider a career in conservation. Fossil Rim is dedicated to the equally important cause of training of interns and other professionals. By doing this we hope to help future educators, vets, researchers and more get a leg up in the industry. Without a doubt, none of what we do could be possible without conservationists like you!
The Key to Conservation
Conservation is a lifetime dedication, so it will change as you do. Above all, don’t be afraid to ask for advice and try new things to fit your lifestyle. Additionally, there is always work to be done, and people like you can make a difference through small tasks. No matter what decision you make, be it big or small, you are undoubtedly making a true difference. For instance, enjoying a tour at Fossil Rim directly contributes to our species by supporting conservation efforts.