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By Zak Smith

It is pretty amazing that in this moment when the COVID-19 outbreak has much of the country holed up in their homes binging Netflix, the most watched show in America over the last few weeks has been focused on wildlife trade — which scientists believe is the source of the COVID-19 pandemic. Make no mistake: Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is about wildlife trade and other aspects of wildlife exploitation, just as surely as the appearance of Ebola, SARS, MERS, avian flu and probably COVID-19 in humans is a result of wildlife exploitation. As a conservationist, this is one of the things I've been thinking about while watching Tiger King. Here are five more:

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Bears stand by a wall at a bear farm of Guizhentang Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, a company making medicine using bile extracted from live bears, on Feb. 24, 2012 in Quanzhou, Fujian Province of China. Getty Images

Even though China recently banned open air markets that trade wildlife, the government has issued guidelines for treating COVID-19 that include medicines containing bear bile, according to National Geographic.

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Some parks are already taking measures to protect vulnerable great apes from COVID-19, like the one pictured above at Virunga National Park in the Congo on Dec. 8, 2016. Jürgen Bätz / picture alliance / Getty Images

The new coronavirus may have passed from animals to humans, but now there are concerns that it could pass from humans to endangered species of apes.

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A customer carries his reusable bag after shopping at a supermarket in New York City. New York State, which implemented its plastic bag ban on March 1, has decided to hold off enforcement until at least May 15. Eduardo Munoz Alvarez / Getty Images

A number of states and cities that implemented bans on plastic bags are putting them on hold over concerns about the cleanliness of reusable bags amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

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A former lawyer for a trophy hunting group now works at Fish and Wildlife Service. Wolfgang Kaehler / LightRocket via Getty Images

President Donald Trump's controversial trophy hunting council may have been disbanded, but trophy hunters and their advocates still have influence at the Department of the Interior.

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Black rhinoceros in the African Savannah. Pierre-Yves Babelon / Moment / Getty Images

There's a welcome bit of good news coming out of Africa. After immense conservation efforts, the numbers of critically endangered black rhinoceroses is slowly ticking up, according to the latest figures released by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), as the BBC's Science Focus reported.

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If you are worried about herring worm, just cut your piece of sushi in half before eating it. Nandaro / CC BY-SA 3.0

The population of a marine parasite that sometimes worms its way into sushi has increased by 283 times in the last nearly 40 years, a University of Washington (UW)-led study has found.

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Bekah Nelson / Florida Fish and Wildlife (CC BY 2.0)

By David Shiffman

Let's go fishin'! After all, a lone angler fishing from a dock or a few friends going out to sea can't have all that much of an effect on fish populations … right?

Think again.

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Dominican Republic: Tourism killing coral reefs | Global Ideas

An estimated 90% of the Dominican Republic's coral reefs have been destroyed, creating a knock-on effect for the entire coastal ecosystem. Local businesses and conservationists are now working to reverse this damage.

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A grumpy burrowing owl. Andy Morffew / CC BY 2.0

By John R. Platt

What do we lose when natural spaces and species disappear?

Increasingly, research has shown that as species and ecosystems vanish, it also chips away at our ability to preserve what remains — because we no longer understand what we're losing.

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Orlando Wetlands Park in central Florida. Bkamprath / iStock/ Getty Images Plus

By Kimberly M.S. Cartier

Mangrove forests, marshes and seagrass beds protect inland areas from storm surges and strong winds. Over long periods, coastal wetlands like these build up sediment that mitigates sea level rise and local land subsidence.

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