Help save the bald eagle.
Eagles are a symbol of America. Eagles are growing in numbers. But, so are rats in subways.
As the human population of earth increases, we not only risk the extinction of many our precious species by encroaching on and destroying their habitats, but the increasing amounts of greenhouse gases we are pumping into the atmosphere are affecting the survivability of species in areas which are inhospitable even to humans.
Here are ten animals facing extinction due to human overpopulation and their irresponsible activities all over the globe.
The Giant Otter is hunted for its skin, has wholly disappeared from Uruguay, and now only a few are left in Argentina.
Mountain Gorillas are highly prized by zoos and private collectors all over the world, putting this peaceful, intelligent giant in jeopardy for the sake of peoples’ collections. There are now only 600 surviving in their natural habitat.
Giant Pandas are another popular zoo exhibit but are also hunted for their skin. There are only 1,000 left in the world.
A warming planet due to overpopulation and pollution has been steadily destroying the Arctic home of the Polar Bears. It is now estimated this magnificent creature has about 25 years left as a species at the current rate of climate change.
Almost all species of sea turtle are now endangered and are facing a multi-pronged threat from humans and overpopulation. Slaughtered for their meat, eggs, skin, and shells, the sea turtles also face habitat destruction as well as death when caught in commercial fishing equipment.
Southern Rockhopper Penguins are facing annihilation because of human activity and climate change, which has been affecting the delicate environmental balance of their habitat – the remote sub-Antarctic islands of the Southern Ocean.
As an island species, Marine Iguanas evolved in relative isolation and have few natural predators. They are therefore no match for the domesticated species humans bring to their island, which hunts and eat their eggs and bring diseases for which their immune system has no defence.
With a population ravaged by poaching, the Black Rhino now faces extinction not because people value its horn for many traditional medicines, as Asian countries have been using Rhino horn for centuries without endangering the population. The reason the Black Rhino population is being decimated is due to a growing class of super wealthy in the middle east who prize the horn for crafting ornate dagger handles as symbols of wealth and power. There are now 2,000 Black Rhino left in the world. Extinction of this shy but powerful animal is too high a cost for any number of dagger handles.
As humans spread, it seems no corner will be left untouched by our destructive influence. The Giant Tortoise of the Galapagos Islands are threatened by introduced species such as cats and dogs which prey on young tortoises, and cattle which occupies the same food niche as the tortoise – low lying shrubbery and grass.
Red Pandas are threatened by hunting for its gorgeous fur, and its flamboyant tail, which is prized for its good luck. The fur looks better on the panda and people should make their own luck. Growing human populations are also encroaching on the Red Pandas natural habitat.
The illegal ivory trade is a major contributor to the imminent extinction of the African Elephant, as are growing populations of humans clearing their natural habitat to make way for crops, settlements, and development.
The Siberian Tiger has been hunted close to extinction for its skin and is also at risk from a shrinking habitat due to expanding human developments.
Fossil records indicate there have been 5 mass extinction events in the history of the world, all caused by external natural forces. We are now in the sixth mass extinction event, but this time it’s mostly due to human activity. The world’s animal populations are just the first to pay the price for human overpopulation and activity, but, inevitably, humans will be next.
Author of this article is Leigh Connelly
It's a team effort. Let's help make people aware of the human caused sixth mass extinction. Bald Eagles are the most searched species of bird online.