These 5 Animals Are About To Become Extinct

Black Rhino
In the autumn of
2013, the Western Black Rhino was officially declared extinct. And tragically,
Black Rhinos are not alone. Over 2,000 animal species are listed as “critically
endangered,” some with population numbers so low they dip into single digits.
In fact, unless we can find a way to intervene, the following five might be the
next to disappear completely.


Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons
1) The Kakapo
Parrot of New Zealand is a large, flightless, ground-dwelling bird.
Strangely nocturnal and sometimes called the owl parrot, the Kakapo
population was devastated when humans introduced ferrets and weasels into its
habitat, in an attempt to reduce the number of wild rabbits. These predators
preyed heavily on the Kakapo, and now there are so few left in the
wild that scientists have given each one his or her own name.
2) Native to
Vietnam and Laos, and known as the “Asian Unicorn,” the Soala is so
rare that it’s become almost mythical. The small forest mammal is related to
goats and antelopes, and both males and females bear a pair of long straight
horns atop their fawnlike heads. None exist in captivity, and Soala
sightings in the wild are incredibly rare.
Rabb’s Fringe-Limbed Treefrog – Only one known male exists today in Zoo Atlanta. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

3) The Rabb’s
Fringe-Limbed Treefrog
is a large frog native to Panama, characterized by
the substantial webbing and scalloped fringes along its  bulb-toed feet. A
strange fungal disease has driven the population to near-extinction and since
February of 2012, there is now only one known male individual, who is living
at Zoo Atlanta in Georgia.
Captivity breeding programs have largely failed.
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

4)  The Ivory-Billed Woodpecker is likely already extinct.
Native to the southeastern United States, the Ivory-Billed is one of the
largest species of woodpeckers in the entire world. Although there have been
reports of sightings as late as the mid-2000s, there is no conclusive evidence
for its existence, despite extensive searching.

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5) The
Franklin’s Bumblebee
lives in a very narrow distribution range, covering a
small 190- by 70-mile area in northern California and southern Oregon. The
species began its decline in the early 1990s, along with bumblebee and honeybee
populations worldwide. There have been no confirmed wild sightings of a Franklin’s
since 2006. Threats to the species include diseases introduced
from the commercial bumble bee trade, habitat loss, pesticides and pollution. 
Other bee species
have faced population decline due to pesticide use. Sign the petition below to
urge the EPA to ban neonicotinoids, which have been tied to bee colony deaths.
Forty years ago,
American legislators made a commitment to try and preserve the rich diversity
of species on our planet. That fight continues today, in many ways, all across
the globe. If you would like to help, please consider donating to one of these rescue organizations: Defenders of Wildlife or
the World Wildlife Fund.


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