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Does identifying fish make a difference?
This seagrass meadow is a protected area in the Florida Keys
This seagrass meadow is a protected area in the Florida Keys
 
Melanie Said
Certainly! Say I'm studying fish in a lake in Madagascar. I'll compile a checklist of all the fish that live in the lake. Next I'll see if these fish occur in other places in Madagascar. Or in the rest of Africa. Or in India. I start to build up a picture of, not just what this area has in common with other places, but what makes it special.

Governments then use this information to make decisions. If there are a lot of unique fish, the government will probably want to protect this area.