As climate change issues become one of the top agendas in worldwide discussions, it brings the realization that humans are not the only living beings on the planet. People share Earth with a vast array of species that brings balance to the world.
However, this balance is being tilted as these species are becoming more vulnerable to the harsh effects of human activities, with some on the edge of being gone for good. As people continue to call for action and address climate change, take note of these eight species that could be saved from extinction with collective action.
Photo Credit: Vladimir Wrangel via Shutterstock
Only 250 to 340 Malayan tigers are alive today, and their number is at risk due to logging operations and road development. These animals can only be found in the Malay Peninsula and in the southern region of Thailand. Newsweek reported that farmers often kill Malayan tigers in retaliation for the animals killing their livestock.
|Photo Credit: Stephen Belcher Photography via WWF|
The Javan Rhino is one of the only five species of rhinoceroses left in existence. It's among the critically endangered species, with only 50 to 70 of them living in Ujung Kulon National Park in Java, according to Owlcation, an online site created by educators and experts on topics related to education. It added that poaching is among the main reasons for the dwindling of these armored beasts, whose horns are worth about $30,000 per kilo on the black market.
|Photo Credit: stockphoto-graf via Shutterstock|
The Hawksbill Sea Turtle has been among the most endangered species since 1996, as their population has declined by 80 percent in the last 150 years. Their decline is due to many factors, such as being hunted for their meat and shell. Another reason is that Hawksbill turtles suffer from habitat loss, as the coral reefs they reside in are also endangered.
|Photo Credit: Chris Martin Bahr via WWF|
Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Also known as Grauer's gorilla, it is among the six critically endangered primates in the world. According to WWF, the population of eastern lowland gorillas has declined by more than 50 since the 1990s. Experts have yet to make an accurate count of the animals due to the violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where Grauer's gorilla is found. The civil unrest in the region has made the gorillas vulnerable to poaching.
|Photo Credit: Kit Korzun via Shutterstock|
Cross River Gorilla
These gorillas are wary of humans and live in the rugged forests of the Congo Basin. Because of this, scientists were only able to study the population of Cross River gorillas in the past decade. Their study led them to determine that there are only around 200 to 300 of these primates left in the wilderness.
Humans are the leading cause of their decline, driving the gorillas into further endangerment by clearing the forests where they live for timber and creating fields, as well as poaching.
|Photo Credit: Pixabay|
Due to the loss of their habitat, the Bornean orangutans have seen their population decimated by over 50 percent in the last 60 years. Found in the different parts of Borneo and Sumatra, the Bornean orangutan is recognized in three subspecies.
The northwest Bornean orangutans have a population of about 1,500, making them the most threatened subspecies. The northeast Bornean orangutans are the smallest in size, and the central Bornean orangutans have a population of at least 35,000.
|Photo Credit: Duncan Noakes via 123RF.com|
Hunters have reduced the number of black rhinos and caused its population to drop to less than 2,500 between 1960 and 1995. Newsweek noted that another reason for the decline is the loss of habitat due to agriculture, settlement, and infrastructure development.
The black rhino remains endangered as they are still the target of illegal human activities like poaching and trafficking of the rhino's horn on the black market.
|Photo Credit: Pixabay|
The Amur leopard is considered as the rarest wild cat and the most critically endangered species in the world. According to Owlcation, 92 of this species were found in their northern historic range and it is believed that other subspecies may still exist in North or South Korea. Poaching, deforestation, wildfires, and commercial projects are among the major threats to the Amur leopards.