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Memories Matter – Preserving a Species Memories for Future Generations


Wildlife conservation isn’t just about raising the numbers on a population count. It’s also an act of cultural preservation.

When we prevent the killing of a wolf family, we’re not just saving lives, we’re also saving the pack’s memories and traditions.

If a family group is left unexploited (that is, not trapped, shot, poisoned or otherwise killed by humans) it will develop extraordinary traditions for hunting, pup-rearing, and social behaviors that are finely tuned to its precise environment and that are unique to that particular long-lived family group.

Memories matter for other species too.

“Bighorn sheep and moose learn to migrate from one another. When they die, that generational know-how is not easily replaced,” reported Ed Yong of The Atlantic.

Thus preserving a species memories of traditions may require preserving routes and corridors over which animals like bighorn sheep can travel.