Economic Importance for Humans: Positive
Mammals are a vital economic resource for humans. Many mammals have been domesticated to provide products such as meat and milk (e.g., cows and goats) or fiber (sheep and alpacas). Many mammals are kept as service animals or pets (e.g., dogs, cats, ferrets). Mammals are important for the ecotourism industry as well. Consider the many people who travel to zoos or to all corners of the world to see animals like elephants, lions, or whales. Mammals (e.g., bats) often help control populations of crop pests. Some species like Norway rats and domestic mice are vitally important in medical and other scientific research; because humans are mammals, other mammals can serve as models in human medicine and research.
Positive Impacts: pet trade ; food ; body parts are source of valuable material; ecotourism ; research and education; produces fertilizer; controls pest population
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