Extinction of endangered species: why do scientists freeze them in “bio banks”?

  • By Victoria Gill
  • Science Correspondent, BBC News

image caption,

Vets at Chester Zoo take a tissue sample from a talkative lory, an endangered tropical bird.

“He’s gone,” whispers Gabby Drake, a veterinarian at Chester Zoo, holding a stethoscope to the feathered chest of a 28-year-old bright red tropical parrot.

The bird is a talkative lory – an elderly resident of Chester Zoo, and a species listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as vulnerable to extinction.

To read especially on BBC Africa:

It is sad to see that this striking and characterful bird should be put to sleep. His little clawed paws are gnarled and suffer from arthritis too bad to treat.

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