A woman from Ontario phones us up and asks him to verify if a certain type of fish (black cod) is extinct.
Caller: "My daughter is getting married next month and I want to make sure the caterer is not trying to serve extinct fish!"
Grouchy: "So...you want to make sure the caterer isn't serving extinct fish. Madam, he wouldn't be able to serve it, if it's extinct."
Caller: "I know but he'll be serving black cod and I want to be sure it's not extinct...".
Grouchy: "Madam... don't you mean a species of fish that is perhaps endangered, or at risk?"
Caller: "Yes... it's the same thing. I want to make sure it's not extinct...".
Grouchy provided her with the DFO program for Aquatic Species at Risk.
The following are the categories of species at risk:
- extirpated species, which no longer exist in the wild in Canada, but exist elsewhere
- endangered species, which are facing imminent extirpation or extinction
- threatened species, which are likely to become endangered if the factors threatening them are not reversed
- special concern species, which possess certain characteristics, such as particular habitat needs or a vulnerability to environmental influences, that may cause them to become threatened or endangered species.
Species which are deemed as extinct, well... simply are. It means that they simply don't exist anymore!!! Who would ever have thought that you would have to explain the meaning of the word 'extinct' to a grown person.
"Madam... how many living dinosaurs have you ever seen in your lifetime?"
"Why... None. There aren't any!!"
"And the reason why there aren't any, Madam... is because they are EXTINCT!!! That means they have ceased to exist as a species... there are no more of them left... the very last one of them died a long, long time ago... That's it!! No more!!!"