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Answering Natures Plea: Endangered Animals
Over the last few decades, threats to animal species have raised more and more awareness among the public. Animal endangerment and extinction are extremely serious issues that are usually irreversible. When a species becomes endangered, its lowered population impacts its ecosystem, and produces a ripple effect within other ecosystems as well. Although this has continued to happen for a long time, by changing people’s attitudes, we can all help to greatly reduce endangerment.
Unlike animal species that are listed as threatened, endangered animals are even closer to extinction. While their population is not entirely wiped out yet, their endangered status serves as a red flag that indicates that they require immediate help. In nature, endangerment and extinction can happen over a long period of time due to natural conditions. However, over the past century, human activity has been a far more common cause. Destruction of natural areas, such as rainforests, are a prime factor that leads to animal endangerment. Other human-related reasons include urbanization, pollution, overfishing and hunting. There is a domino effect when a species becomes endangered. The next level up on the food chain is affected negatively by the sudden reduction in their food source, while creatures on the lower level begin to overpopulate when their natural predator is eliminated. In turn, these developments cause the natural order to become disrupted. In some cases it may even lead to animals foraging through human-populated areas in search of food, as seen with bears in Vancouver, or tigers in parts of India.
If people continue to act ignorantly and destroy natural resources and habitats, it will inevitably lead to the endangerment and extinction of many more creatures. However, if everyone plays their part, even in a small way, it can help immensely. While adopting a creature or helping to care for them directly might not be the most feasible solution for everyone, we can all contribute in other ways. This can include being vigilant about pollution, reducing energy use, and teaching children about conservation methods as well. Call centers offering live answering services and advanced voicemail solutions are often available for more inforamation.
Of the numerous species that are currently endangered, the following list illustrates those that are most in danger of facing extinction.
1. Tigers – Endangered due to deforestation, poaching, and climate change.
2. Polar Bear – Global warming is the main reason that polar bears are endangered.
3. Pacific Walrus (PDF) – Climate change and the lack of floating ice hinder this walrus’ wellbeing.
4. Magellanic Penguin – Oil spills and declining food sources are quickly killing Magellanic penguins.
5. Leatherback Turtle – Rising ocean levels, warmer temeratures, and accidental fishing fleet killings contribute to the decline of the leatherback turtle.
6. Mountain Gorilla – Deforestation and urbanization of the gorilla’s territory leave it without a natural habitat.
7. Javan Rhinoceros – The Javan rhino’s top threat is illegal hunting, especially for its value in Asian medicine.
8. Giant Panda – Severe deforestation has left pandas scrambling to find shelter or facing death.
9. Amur Leopard (PDF) – Forest fires, logging, land development and poaching still threaten the Amur leopard.
10. Northern Right Whale – Entanglement in nets and other fishing equipment is a prime factor that has lead to endangerment of Northern Right whales.
- The IUCN Red List of Endangered Animals
- Butterfly Poaching
- The Endangered Species Act in the U.S.
- Extinct Species Throughout History
- How to Protect Endangered Creatures
- Implications and Repercussions of Extinction
- The World Conservation Society
- Learn More About Animal Conservation
- How Does the Endangered Species Act Help?
- Endangered and Threatened Animals
- Landowners and Endangerment
- A Quick Guide to Endangered Species
- Climate Change and Marine Animals
- How to Help Endangered Species Survive