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Endangered Animals

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Endangered Animals - Page Text Content

S: Endangered Animals

FC: Endangered Animals

1: What is an endangered animal? A species whose numbers are so small that the species is at risk of extinction.

2: The International Union for Conservation of Nature is the world's oldest and largest global environmental organization. The IUCN creates studies a "Red List" of species it studies and divides them into seven categories: 1) Extinct 2) Extinct in the wild 3) Critically endangered 4) Endangered 5) Vulnerable 6) Near threatened 7) Least concern

3: Causes of Endangerment: Habitat Destruction - Sometimes humans destroy the natural habitats of animals by mining, logging, and farming. Deforestation is the cutting, clearing, and removal of rainforests or related ecosystems.

4: Overexploitation - Excessive hunting and fishing has affected many different animal species. For a long time there were no restrictions on whaling and the hunting of elephants for their ivory. There are laws in place today to protect whales and elephants, but certain species still have very low numbers and are in danger of extinction. | American Indian artwork depicting whale hunting. | African elephant ivory carvings.

5: There are endangered animals on all seven continents...

6: North America | The red wolf was designated an endangered species in 1967, and shortly thereafter the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service initiated efforts to conserve the species. Today, more than 100 red wolves roam their native habitats in eastern North Carolina, and nearly 200 red wolves are maintained in captive breeding facilities throughout the United States. | Red Wolf

7: There are estimated to be fewer than 100 ocelots left in the United States, all of which live along the south Texas coast. In an effort to provide habitat for the ocelot and build a partnership between landowners and wildlife advocates, Environmental Defense and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have signed a landmark 30 year Safe Harbour agreement for the endangered cat. | Ocelot

8: South America | The giant otter can grow to more than 6 feet long and 70 pounds, nearly twice as large as its American counterparts. Giant otters once were found throughout the Tropical rainforests of the Amazon, down to Brazil's Pantanal, the world's largest wetland. Today they are found only in the most remote waters in tropical South America. Hunting for their luxuriant fur, along with habitat loss, has reduced their numbers to an estimated 2,000 to 5,000. | Giant Otter

9: Often mistaken for the leopard, the jaguar is a beautifully spotted cat with a more massive and powerful build and noticeably larger head. The jaguar is the largest cat in the Americas. | Populations have declined mainly due to hunting for its beautiful coat in the 1960s and 1970s. Today, habitat loss due to the clearing of forest is the main threat, and some poaching still occurs. | Jaguar

10: Africa | Also called the Barbary hyena, the striped hyena is a close relative of the brown hyena of southern Africa. It is found throughout northern and eastern Africa, Arabia, Asia Minor, and India. This species is threatened by loss of habitat and hunting. They are also hunted for their body parts which are used in medicine. | Striped Hyena

11: The cheetah has a wide range and is found from Africa south of the Sahara to India. It is considered the world's fastest mammal on land reaching speeds of up to 75 mph. The cheetah is threatened by habitat loss and hunting for their spotted pelt. They are also sometimes killed by farmers protecting their livestock. | Jaguar

12: Asia | The tiger is the most powerful living cat species on the earth and the largest and heaviest living of the cats in the world. The main cause of deline is poaching and loss of habitat due to human population expansion and activities such as logging. Tigers are often killed illegally for their fur or their bones which are used in Chinese medicine. Also tiger populations were nearly wiped out up until the 1930s due to hunting for sport. | Tiger

13: The giant panda is an extremely rare animal found mainly in the Western Szechwan province of southwest China. The giant panda can weigh from 165 to 330 lb. The head and body of the panda is mainly white with the exception of its ears, eye patches, nose, shoulders, arms, and legs. | The giant panda is only found in central and western China, and only 1000 to 2000 remain in the wild. Causes of their decline include destruction of habitat and poaching. And the panda is heavily dependent upon its main food source, bamboo, which is becoming rare in its habitat. | Giant Panda

14: Europe | The main cause of decline is a dramatic reduction of habitat due to human settlement. Also, brown bears are hunted for sport and in some areas are persecuted because they are believed to be dangerous to humans and a threat to livestock. | The brown bear is a large, omnivorous mammal found throughout northern and central Europe, Asia, and North America. Adults can reach up to nine feet in head and body length and can weigh from 176 to 1500 lb depending on the subspecies and range. | Brown Bear

15: Antarctica | The blue whale is the largest of all whales and is said to be the largest animal in Earths history. The average length of an adult blue whale is 79 to 88 feet and the average weight is 130 to 150 tons. | Over 350,000 whales have been hunted and killed, and by the 1960s, blue whales were on the edge of extinction. There are probably only around 2500 blue whales left in the oceans and they are now legally protected despite opposition by the whaling industry. | Blue Whale

16: Oceania (Includes Australia) | The Northern Hairy-nosed wombat is also called the Queensland Hairy-nosed Wombat and only about 65 individuals exist in Australia. It is said to be Australia's most endangered marsupial and one of the world's most endangered mammals. Wombats have a thick, stocky body and are heavily built with powerful forearms. | Northern hairy-nosed wombats were once hunted for their fur until legally protected. The remaining 62 to 65 individuals were threatened by competition with introduced species such as sheep and rabbits for food, and most of the wombats are aging and their reproductive success is very low. | Northern Hairy-nosed Wombat

17: No Longer Endangered! Some populations of animals that were endangered have recovered and have been removed from the endangered species list. | In 2007 the American crocodile was removed from the endangered species list. The crocodile was put on the list in 1975...the population was only about 300 in 1976. | Since the crocodile has been under the protection by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the population has steadily increased. It has been moved from the "endangered" list to the "threatened" list and will still be protected by laws against harassing, killing, and poaching.

18: Wildlife Organizations There are many organizations that work to protect endangered species. Visit the websites below to find out how you can help. | World Wildlife Fund: National Wildlife Federation Wildlife Conservation Society

19: Photo Citations 2. IUCN and Red List icons: 3. Deforestation in Ecuador: Deforestation: 4. NYC - National Museum of the American Indian - Whale Hunt Painted Screen: Ivory carvings: 5. Seven continents: 6. North America: red wolf:

20: 7. Ocelot: 8. South America: Giant Otter: 9. Jaguar: 10. Africa: Striped hyena: 11. Cheetah: 12. Asia: Tiger:

21: 13. Giant Panda: 14. Europe: Brown bear: 15. Antarctica: Blue whale: 16. Oceania: Northern Hairy-nosed Wombat:

22: 17. American crocodile: 18. WWF logo: NWF logo: CS logo: Back Cover Baby panda:

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  • Title: Endangered Animals
  • endangered, species, animals
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  • Started: almost 6 years ago
  • Updated: almost 6 years ago