15 Most Endangered Species on Earth
Our planet, Earth, hosts more than 30 million animal species. However, a number of those species are at a risk of extinction due to man’s intervention for consumption or entertainment. Endangered species are found throughout the world. Endangered means that the animal is nearly extinct. Many different reasons are in place for the extinction of these animals, whether it is to use for their fur, the oil they produce or as a food source. There are several different types of endangered species. Here we will take a look some of the most endangered species out there.
The Ivory-Billed Woodpecker is the most critically endangered species out there. It lives in the Southeastern US and in parts of Cuba. It is a huge woodpecker that was extinct until 2004. Even now there are only a handful of the woodpeckers that are still around. It is a very vulnerable animal.
The Amur Leopard
The Amur Leopard is a rare leopard found only in northern Russia’s Primorye region. This region is very snowy and cold. At one time the leopard was also found in Korea and China, but the leopard is obsolete in those areas. According to Census records there are only around 20 adult Amur leopards in existence in the world today.
The Javan Rhinoceros
The Javan Rhinoceros is another of the top endangered species. There is an estimated 40 to 60 animals still alive today, those residing in Indonesia along the Ujung Kulon National Park. The animal is so desired because of its horn.
More than 100 different species of Lemur are found, all of which are endangered. These animals live on the Island of Madagascar. This area is found on the southeast coast of Africa. There are almost no Lemur remaining today, of any species. Although they are not on the list of critically endangered species there are few of these animals found anywhere.
Northern Right Whale
The Northern right whale is the most endangered of the whale species. It is found around the Atlantic coasts of Canada as well as the US, with approximately 350 different whales still found. This whale is needed for its oil as well as its easy production process. It is a protected whale.
Vaquita is a family of porpoise and its population declines by by 15-25% a year since 1945. There are only 500-600 species left and lives only in the Gulf of California, specifically, in the stretch of water between Mexico and Baja California. Climate change is one the reason which affects their food availability and habitat.
Black Rhinoceros is another species that has got its name registered in the list of endangered species that are going to be extinct forever. Only few thousand species black rhinoceros are left on this planet. Climate change and poaching are believed to be two major reasons for the drop in count of this species. Black rhinoceros were hunted by poachers who take advantage of their horns and sell them for extremely high profits.
It is estimated that around 302-408 mountain gorillas are left in this world making it another species among the group of endangered species list. Due to their aggressive behaviour, people started having misconception that they pose a great risk to their safety. They started hunting them down and despite repeated conservation initiatives, their population is still not secured from poachers.
Baiji and Vaquita are two aquatic animals that have been listed among most endangered species list. The Baiji is found in the Yangtze River in China and therefore is called as Yangtze River Dolphin. Only three Yangtze River Dolphins were found in an expedition done in 2007. Despite various initiatives like creation of natural reserves along the middle and lower areas of the Yangtze River, they have not been effective in preventing incidental deaths of the Yangtze River Dolphins.
The Saola is also known as the Asian unicorn. It is rarely seen these days and resembles an antelope. This Saola is considered a Critically endangered animal and is found between Laos and Vietnam. It resembles a cattle or an antelope and offers white patches on its face and has horns. The animal is quite large and has been around since 1992, though seen only in rare occasion.
Cross River Gorilla
Cross River Gorilla are mostly found along the southern Cameroon-Nigerian border. There are only around 300 Cross River Gorillas left and illegal hunting and changing climate are major reasons for the extinction and loss of habitat of Cross River Gorillas.
Leatherback Sea Turtle
The Leatherback Sea Turtle is the biggest turtle found on the earth. It is found all over the globe but is prone to areas of the tropic. This turtle is critically endangered. There was once more than 120,000 adult female leatherback sea turtles but today the number is down to just about 20,000 but that number continues to decline. Theft of eggs by humans and illegal hunting are perhaps the two most common reasons this turtle is extinct.
The Siberian Tiger is the largest cat found in the world. It can weigh as 650 pounds. This species of tiger can be found in the birch forest of Russia and in Far East China and Korea. These tigers often live in areas with winter time temperatures extremely cold, some as much as -50 degrees F. this tiger is becoming extinct due to hunting. The protected animals is found in only a population of around 500 these days and ages. It is illegal to hunt a Siberian tiger.
Giant Chinese Salamander
The Giant Chinese Salamander is the world’s biggest amphibian. It can grow to be as long as 6 feet in length. These Salamander’s can be found in China in forested areas. As many as 500 eggs can be laid at once. Their eggs are found in underwater burrows. However because people use the Chinese Giant Salamander as food, it has now become endangered.
The Dodo Bird
The Dodo Bird is also known by several other names, including the tooth-billed pigeon. This bird is native to Samoa and is rather small, measuring just 12 inches in length. It is a relative of the big Dodo bird. There are just a few hundred of the Dodo birds remaining on the earth today.
Did you know that all of the animals listed above were on the endangered species list? Although there are the most common of the endangered species there are certainly many others that are also out there. There are certainly many of them out there, including the top most endangered species listed above.
Image credit: iandduffy , marion_rawson
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