News Source: 
UW Today
January 9, 2014

The world is losing its large carnivores, their ranges are collapsing and many species are at risk of extinction.

“Promoting tolerance and coexistence with large carnivores is a crucial societal challenge that will ultimately determine the fate of Earth’s largest carnivores and all that depends upon them, including humans,” write the co-authors of a review article, in the Jan. 10 issue of Science, about the largest carnivore species on Earth.

Despite their scary reputation, carnivores deserve credit for all kinds of ecological services, among them, helping fight climate change (they eat the grazers that gobble down young trees and other vegetation that could be holding carbon), improving streams and stream banks,  helping other smaller predators cope with climate change, eating diseased deer, elk and other wild animals that might otherwise contaminate livestock and, possibly, helping ranchers achieve sustainable pasture lands.