Animal Extinction: Causes and Consequences
“Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.” –Carl Sagan
“Nothing is more priceless and more worthy of preservation than the rich array of animal life with which our country has been blessed.”-President Nixon, upon signing the Endangered Species Act
Animal extinction is defined as the disappearance of animals or species due to natural or unnatural reasons. Millions of animals die due to human assaultation, hunting for fun and environmental disasters. We cannot control the animal extinction caused due to natural calamities.
Endangered species are classified as below:
1. The vulnerable species: These are in risk group because of their naturally declining numbers.
2. The threatened species: These kinds of animals are available in adequate number. But these are in danger zone due to the possibilities of extinction.
Ex: Indigo snake and Red kangaroo
3. The endangered species: These are under the category of immediate extinction and require special care towards their protection.
Ex: Siberian tiger and snow leopard
4. The extinct species: These animals are already extinct.
Ex: Passenger pigeon, dodo and stegosaurus etc.
Statistics about animal extinction:
1. At present 38 mammals are extinct as per records.
2. Global warming is a major issue; at present 28,270 species of mammals are extinct and some of them are kept in captivity.
3. In the year 2006, nearly 6524 vertebrate species were reported as threatened. And it is also recorded that, nearly 2101 species were listed to be threatened.
4. In the same year 2006, nearly 253 fish species are notified as endangered.
5. In 2006,442 amphibian species were listed as extinct.
6. 81 species of animals are noted as critically extinct.
7. In the USA, nearly 935 fish species are listed as extinct.
8. 1000 animal species are considered as extinct all over the world.
• Loss of habitat
• Competition from other species
• Illegal killing of birds (hunting)
The below factors play important role in controlling animal extinction:
1. Learn about endangered species in your area.
2. Visit a national wildlife refuge, park, zoo or other open space.
3. Provide habitat for wildlife by planting native vegetation in your yard.
4. Minimize use of herbicides and pesticides.
5. Buy recycled paper and Forest Stewardship Council wood products to protect forest. Recycle your cell phones, because a mineral used in cell phones and other electronics is mined in gorilla habitat.
6. Place decals on windows to stop bird accidents.
7. Slow down when driving.
8. Avoid supporting the market in illegal wildlife including: tortoiseshell, ivory and coral.
9. Report any harassment or shooting of threatened and endangered species to your local state or federal wildlife enforcement office.
10. Protect wildlife habitat.
10 most amazing ancient animals which became extinct on the earth are as below:
1. Tyrannosaurus Rex (extinct 65 million years ago)
2. Quagga: half zebra, half horse (extinct since 1883)
3. Thylacine: the Tasmanian tiger (extinct since 1936)
4. Steller’s Sea Cow: the defenseless beast (extinct since 1768)
5. Irish Deer: the largest deer that ever lived (extinct about 7,700 years ago)
6. Caspian Tiger: the third largest (extinct since 1970)
7. Great Auk: largest of all auks (extinct since 1844)
8. Cave Lion: one of the largest lions ever (extinct 2,000 years ago)
9. Dodo: the archetype of extinct species (extinct since late 17th century)
Recently extinct animals on the earth are as below:
1. Thylacine which is known as Tasmanian Tiger, extinct animal of Hobart Zoo, Tasmania
2. Quagga which is known as plains Zebra extinct animal of south Africa
3. Passenger pigeon extinct animal of North America
4. Golden Toad extinct animal of Monteverde, Costa Rica
5. Caribbean Monk Seal extinct animal of Caribbean sea and Gulf of Mexico
6. Pyrenean Ibex, extinct animal of Andorra, pain and France
7. Bubal Hartebeest, extinct animal from North Africa and Middle East
8. Javan Tiger, extinct animal of Indonesian Island of Java
9. Tecopa Pupfish, extinct animal of Mojave Desert, Inyo country, California, USA
10. Baiji River Dolphin, extinct animal of china
The complete list of extinct animals till now is as follows:
1. Antillean cave rat
2. Arabian gazelle
3. Barbados raccoon
4. Barbados rice rat
5. Basalt plains mouse
6. Bavarian pine vole
7. Big eared hopping mouse
8. Blue buck
9. Cayman Brac hutia
10. Cayman Brac nesophont
11. Cayman hutia
12. Cayman hare wallby
13. Central rock rat
14. Corsican shrew
15. Cuban spider monkey
16. Curio’s giant rat
17. Dark flying fox
18. Desert rat Kangaroo
19. Dusky flying fox
20. Falkland Islands dog
21. Goliath white toothed shrew
22. Atlantic gray whale
23. Guam flying fox
24. Gull Island vole
25. Hairy eared dwarf lemur
26. Imposter hutia
27. Jamaican monkey
28. Jamaican pallid flower bat
29. Large Corsican field vole
30. Large funnel eared bat
31. Large ghost faced bat
32. Large palau flying fox
33. Large sloth lemur
34. Large eared tenrec
35. Long tailed hopping mouse
36. Madagascan pygmy hippopotamus
37. Common Malagasy hippo
38. Malagasy dwarf hippopotamus
39. Marcano’s solenodon
40. Marianas flying fox
41. Nergos naked backed fruit bat
42. New guilnea big eared bat
43. Omiteme cottontail
44. Pemberton’s deer mouse
45. Prazewalski’s horse
46. Queen of sheba’s gazelle
47. Red gazelle
48. Sardinian pika
49. Saudi gazelle
50. Schaumburg’s deer
51. Sea mink
52. Short homed water buffalo
53. Southeastern pocket gopher
54. Standing’s hippo
55. Sturdee’s Bonin pipistrelle
56. Swan Island hutia
57. Tanzania woolly bat
58. Tasmanian bettong
60. Vietnam warty pig
61. West Indian porcupine
62. Western palm squirrel
63. White footed rabbit rat
Endangered species act of 1973 is one of the USA environmental laws passed in 1970s. It was mainly designed to protect many species from extinction. The act is passed by two federal agencies like United States fish and wildlife service (FWS) and National oceanic and atmospheric administration (NOAA). The species that come under this law are birds, insects, fish, reptiles, mammals, crustaceans, flowers, grasses and trees.