Endangered species

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Conservation status
Bufo periglenes2.jpg
Lower Risk

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Status iucn3.1.svg
Comparison of Red List classes above
and NatureServe status below
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Golden lion tamarin, an endemic and one of the endangered species saved from extinction in Brazil Golden lion tamarin portrait3.jpg
Golden lion tamarin, an endemic and one of the endangered species saved from extinction in Brazil
A visual representation of the declining percentages of endangered plant and animal species in Brazil from 2014 to 2022. The sidebar graph highlights the contrast between plant and animal conservation efforts. Trends in Endangered Species- A Visual Representation of Plant and Animal Conservation in Brazil (2014-2022).pdf
A visual representation of the declining percentages of endangered plant and animal species in Brazil from 2014 to 2022. The sidebar graph highlights the contrast between plant and animal conservation efforts.
The California condor is a critically endangered species. Note the wing tags used for population monitoring. Gymnogyps californianus -Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuge, California, USA -flying-8.jpg
The California condor is a critically endangered species. Note the wing tags used for population monitoring.

An endangered species is a species that is very likely to become extinct in the near future, either worldwide or in a particular political jurisdiction. Endangered species may be at risk due to factors such as habitat loss, poaching, invasive species, and climate change. [1] The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List lists the global conservation status of many species, and various other agencies assess the status of species within particular areas. Many nations have laws that protect conservation-reliant species which, for example, forbid hunting, restrict land development, or create protected areas. Some endangered species are the target of extensive conservation efforts such as captive breeding and habitat restoration.


Human activity is a significant cause in causing some species to become endangered. [2] [3] [4] [5]

Conservation status

Photo of Pusa hispida saimensis, also known as Saimaa ringed seal, from 1956. Living only in Lake Saimaa, Finland, Saimaa ringed seals are among the most endangered seals in the world, having a total population of only about 400 individuals. Pusa hispida saimensis ca 1956.jpg
Photo of Pusa hispida saimensis, also known as Saimaa ringed seal, from 1956. Living only in Lake Saimaa, Finland, Saimaa ringed seals are among the most endangered seals in the world, having a total population of only about 400 individuals.

The conservation status of a species indicates the likelihood that it will become extinct. Multiple factors are considered when assessing the status of a species; e.g., such statistics as the number remaining, the overall increase or decrease in the population over time, breeding success rates, or known threats. [7] The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species is the best-known worldwide conservation status listing and ranking system. [8]

Over 50% of the world's species are estimated to be at risk of extinction, [9] but the frontier between categories such as 'endangered', 'rare', or 'locally extinct' species is often difficult to draw given the general paucity of data on most of these species. This is notably the case in the world Ocean where endangered species not seen for decades may go extinct unnoticed. [10]

Internationally, 195 countries have signed an accord to create Biodiversity Action Plans that will protect endangered and other threatened species. In the United States, such plans are usually called Species Recovery Plans.

IUCN Red List

The Siberian tiger is an Endangered (EN) tiger subspecies. Three tiger subspecies are already extinct (see List of carnivorans by population). Panthera tigris altaica 13 - Buffalo Zoo.jpg
The Siberian tiger is an Endangered (EN) tiger subspecies. Three tiger subspecies are already extinct (see List of carnivorans by population).
Blue-throated macaw, a critically endangered bird AraGlaucogularisFull.jpg
Blue-throated macaw, a critically endangered bird
Brown spider monkey, a critically endangered mammal BrownSpiderMonkey (edit2).jpg
Brown spider monkey, a critically endangered mammal
Siamese crocodile, a critically endangered reptile Siamese Crocodiles.JPG
Siamese crocodile, a critically endangered reptile
American burying beetle, an endangered species of insect Nicrophorus americanus - Sankt-Peterburg.jpg
American burying beetle, an endangered species of insect
Kemp's ridley sea turtle, a critically endangered reptile Lepidochelys kempii.jpg
Kemp's ridley sea turtle, a critically endangered reptile
The Mexican wolf, the most endangered subspecies of the North American grey wolf. Approximately 143 are living in the wild. Mexican Wolf 2 yfb-edit 1.jpg
The Mexican wolf, the most endangered subspecies of the North American grey wolf. Approximately 143 are living in the wild.

Though labeled a list, the IUCN Red List is a system of assessing the global conservation status of species that includes "Data Deficient" (DD) species – species for which more data and assessment is required before their situation may be determined – as well species comprehensively assessed by the IUCN's species assessment process. [12] The species under the index include: mammals, birds, amphibians, cycads, and corals. Those species of "Near Threatened" (NT) and "Least Concern" (LC) status have been assessed and found to have relatively robust and healthy populations, though these may be in decline. Unlike their more general use elsewhere, the List uses the terms "endangered species" and "threatened species" with particular meanings: "Endangered" (EN) species lie between "Vulnerable" (VU) and "Critically Endangered" (CR) species. In 2012, the IUCN Red List listed 3,079 animal and 2,655 plant species as endangered (EN) worldwide. [12]

In Brazil

Brazil is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, if not the most. It houses not only the Amazon forest but the Atlantic forest, the savanna-like Cerrado among other biomes. [13] Due to the high density of some of its well-preserved rainforests, wildlife trafficking, which along with deforestation is one of the biggest endangerment drivers in Brazil, has become a challenge. Brazil has a broad legal system meant to protect the environment, including its Constitution, [14] as well as several federal, state and local government agencies tasked with protecting the fauna and flora, fining individuals or companies linked to environmental crimes and confiscating illegally taken wildlife. Though such agencies can collect their data, each system operates relatively on its own when it comes to wildlife trafficking. However, both the agencies and the NGO's working in Brazil agree that the birds account for about 80% of trafficked species in the country. [15]

The relation between wildlife smuggling, other environment crimes under the Brazilian law such as deforestation, and endangered species is particularly intricate and troubling since the rarer the animal or plant gets the most targeted and valuable they become in the black market, which leads to more endangered species in its turn. [16]

Additionally, some environment experts and scientists point to the disbanding of environment agencies and the repeal of laws in Brazil under the presidency of Jair Bolsonaro as one of the reasons behind a surge in the number of endangered species. [17] In one occasion during his presidency some fines totaling US$3.1 billion on environment criminals were revoked and at least one fine (related to illegal fishing) imposed on Bolsonaro himself was cancelled and the agent who fined him was demoted. [18]

In the past, Brazil has successfully saved the endemic golden lion tamarin from extinction. Massive campaigns to raise awareness among people by NGO's and governments, which included printing depictions of the golden lion tamarin in the 20 reais Brazilian banknotes (still in circulation), are credited with getting the species out of the critically endangered animals list. [19] [20]

In the United States

There is data from the United States that shows a correlation between human populations and threatened and endangered species. Using species data from the Database on the Economics and Management of Endangered Species database and the period that the Endangered Species Act (ESA) has been in existence, 1970 to 1997, a table was created that suggests a positive relationship between human activity and species endangerment. [21]

Effect of climate change on endangered species

Carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere is asserted to be one of the leading causes of animal endangerment. According to the US National Park Service: [22]

If we can sufficiently reduce greenhouse gas emissions, many of them will still have a chance to survive and recover. NASA scientist James Hanson has warned that in order to maintain a climate similar to that under which human civilization developed and similar to that which so many organisms are adapted, we need to quickly reduce the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere to 350 parts per million (ppm). Before the industrial revolution, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels rarely rose above 280 ppm; during the 2014 calendar year, carbon dioxide levels fluctuated between 395 and 402 ppm.

A proportional symbol map of each state's endangered species count U.S. Endangered Species Count by State.gif
A proportional symbol map of each state's endangered species count

Endangered Species Act

Under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 in the United States, species may be listed as "endangered" or "threatened". The Salt Creek tiger beetle (Cicindela nevadica lincolniana) is an example of an endangered subspecies protected under the ESA. The US Fish and Wildlife Service, as well as the National Marine Fisheries Service are held responsible for classifying and protecting endangered species. They are also responsible for adding a particular species to the list, which can be a long, controversial process. [23]

Some endangered species laws are controversial. Typical areas of controversy include criteria for placing a species on the endangered species list and rules for removing a species from the list once its population has recovered. Whether restrictions on land development constitute a "taking" of land by the government; the related question of whether private landowners should be compensated for the loss of uses of their areas; and obtaining reasonable exceptions to protection laws. Also lobbying from hunters and various industries like the petroleum industry, construction industry, and logging, has been an obstacle in establishing endangered species laws.

The Bush administration lifted a policy that required federal officials to consult a wildlife expert before taking actions that could damage endangered species. Under the Obama administration, this policy was reinstated. [24]

Being listed as an endangered species can have negative effect since it could make a species more desirable for collectors and poachers. [25] This effect is potentially reducible, such as in China where commercially farmed turtles may be reducing some of the pressure to poach endangered species. [26]

Another problem with the listing species is its effect of inciting the use of the "shoot, shovel, and shut-up" method of clearing endangered species from an area of land. Some landowners currently may perceive a diminution in value for their land after finding an endangered animal on it. They have allegedly opted to kill and bury the animals or destroy habitat silently. Thus removing the problem from their land, but at the same time further reducing the population of an endangered species. [27] The effectiveness of the ESA – which coined the term "endangered species" – has been questioned by business advocacy groups and their publications but is nevertheless widely recognized by wildlife scientists who work with the species as an effective recovery tool. Nineteen species have been delisted and recovered [28] and 93% of listed species in the northeastern United States have a recovering or stable population. [29]

Currently, 1,556 endangered species are under protection by government law. This approximation, however, does not take into consideration the species threatened with endangerment that are not included under the protection of laws like the Endangered Species Act. According to NatureServe's global conservation status, approximately thirteen percent of vertebrates (excluding marine fish), seventeen percent of vascular plants, and six to eighteen percent of fungi are considered imperiled. [30] :415 Thus, in total, between seven and eighteen percent of the United States' known animals, fungi and plants are near extinction. [30] :416 This total is substantially more than the number of species protected in the United States under the Endangered Species Act.

Bald eagle 2010-bald-eagle-kodiak.jpg
Bald eagle
American bison American bison k5680-1.jpg
American bison

Ever since humankind began hunting to preserve itself, over-hunting and fishing have been a large and dangerous problem. Of all the species who became extinct due to interference from humankind, the dodo, passenger pigeon, great auk, Tasmanian tiger and Steller's sea cow are some of the more well known examples; with the bald eagle, grizzly bear, American bison, Eastern timber wolf and sea turtle having been poached to near-extinction. Many began as food sources seen as necessary for survival but became the target of sport. However, due to major efforts to prevent extinction, the bald eagle, or Haliaeetus leucocephalus is now under the category of Least Concern on the red list. [31] A present-day example of the over-hunting of a species can be seen in the oceans as populations of certain whales have been greatly reduced. Large whales like the blue whale, bowhead whale, finback whale, gray whale, sperm whale, and humpback whale are some of the eight whales which are currently still included on the Endangered Species List. Actions have been taken to attempt a reduction in whaling and increase population sizes. The actions include prohibiting all whaling in United States waters, the formation of the CITES treaty which protects all whales, along with the formation of the International Whaling Commission (IWC). But even though all of these movements have been put in place, countries such as Japan continue to hunt and harvest whales under the claim of "scientific purposes". [32] Over-hunting, climatic change and habitat loss leads in landing species in endangered species list. It could mean that extinction rates could increase to a large extent in the future.

In Canada

Endangered species are addressed through Canada's Species at Risk Act. A species is deemed threatened or endangered when it is on the verge of extinction or extirpation. Once a species is deemed threatened or endangered, the Act requires that a recovery plan to be developed that indicates how to stop or reverse the species' population decline. [33] As of 2021, the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife In Canada has assessed 369 species as being endangered in Canada.

In India

The World Wide Fund-India raises concern in the longevity of the following animal species: the Red Panda, the Bengal Tiger, the Ganges River Dolphin, the Asian Elephant. [34]

India signed the Wildlife Protection Act and the also joined the Convention on the International Trade in 1976, to prevent poaching from harming its wildlife. [35]

Invasive species

The introduction of non-indigenous species to an area can disrupt the ecosystem to such an extent that native species become endangered. Such introductions may be termed alien or invasive species. In some cases, the invasive species compete with the native species for food or prey on the natives. In other cases, a stable ecological balance may be upset by predation or other causes leading to unexpected species decline. New species may also carry diseases to which the native species have no exposure or resistance. [36]

Climate change

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) emphasizes that our planet is warming at a rate faster than any time in the past 10,000 years, necessitating species to adapt to new climate patterns, such as variations in rainfall and longer, warmer summers. [37] For example, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service highlighted efforts to understand and mitigate the impact of climate change on species through scientific research, modeling, and conservation actions. This includes evaluating the current condition of species, their genetic variation, and how changes in their environment may affect their survival. [38]

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) reports that the approximately 1 °C rise in mean global temperature due to human activities is causing serious impacts on species, including changes in abundance, genetic composition, behavior, and survival. The IUCN stresses the importance of environmental policies aimed at reducing CO2 emissions to lessen the impact of climate change on species. Tools like the IUCN Red List and guidelines for assessing species' vulnerability to climate change are vital for conservation efforts. [39]

Image showing one of many fish kills (in this case Tilapia) induced by effects of climate change. Salton Sea Tilapia.jpg
Image showing one of many fish kills (in this case Tilapia) induced by effects of climate change.

In addition, climate change can lead to species decreasing in areas where they once thrived, by being forced to migrate or even going extinct from inhospitable conditions, invasive species, and fragmentation. A study cited by WWF found that one in six species is at risk of extinction due to climate change if no action is taken. The phenomenon of species shifting their ranges in response to changing climates, finding new or shrinking habitats, illustrates the direct impact of global warming on biodiversity. [37] Another major concern is rising ocean acidity caused from excess CO 2 in the atmosphere. This creates acidic conditions in the ocean which creates an inhospitable environment for fish, plants, and other keystone species such as coral reefs


For example the Emperor Penguins, which rely on Antarctic sea ice for breeding, shelter, and food. The melting of ice sheets poses a direct threat to their survival. Similarly, the Mount Rainier white-tailed ptarmigan, adapted to alpine mountaintops, faces habitat loss due to climate changes in snowfall patterns and rising temperatures. [41]

Another example is in the case of the Salton Sea in California. This area is a critical habitat for many endangered and watched species, as well as many migratory birds. Due to environmental shifts from climate change and the addition of agriculture in the surrounding plains, the system has become almost irreparably damaged. The warming temperatures has caused mass evaporation, leaving the Sea much more saline and with much more exposed playa. This not only damages air quality but also has caused fish kills to accumulate as shown pictured below. This has made the system inhospitable to the birds and endangered species relying upon it [42]


The dhole, Asia's most endangered top predator, is on the edge of extinction. Dhole.jpg
The dhole, Asia's most endangered top predator, is on the edge of extinction.

Captive breeding

Captive breeding is the process of breeding rare or endangered species in human controlled environments with restricted settings, such as wildlife reserves, zoos, and other conservation facilities. Captive breeding is meant to save species from extinction and so stabilise the population of the species that it will not disappear. [43]

This technique has worked for many species for some time, with probably the oldest known such instances of captive mating being attributed to menageries of European and Asian rulers, an example being the Père David's deer. However, captive breeding techniques are usually difficult to implement for such highly mobile species as some migratory birds (e.g. cranes) and fishes (e.g. hilsa). Additionally, if the captive breeding population is too small, then inbreeding may occur due to a reduced gene pool and reduce resistance.

"Endangered" in relation to "threatened" under the ESA Status ESA LE.svg
"Endangered" in relation to "threatened" under the ESA

In 1981, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) created a Species Survival Plan (SSP) to help preserve specific endangered and threatened species through captive breeding. With over 450 SSP Plans, some endangered species are covered by the AZA with plans to cover population management goals and recommendations for breeding for a diverse and healthy population, created by Taxon Advisory Groups. These programs are commonly created as a last resort effort. SSP Programs regularly participate in species recovery, veterinary care for wildlife disease outbreaks, and some other wildlife conservation efforts. The AZA's Species Survival Plan also has breeding and transfer programs, both within and outside of AZA – certified zoos and aquariums. Some animals that are part of SSP programs are giant pandas, lowland gorillas, and California condors. [44]

Private farming

Black rhino Ostafrikanisches Spitzmaulnashorn.JPG
Black rhino
Southern bluefin tuna Thmac u0.gif
Southern bluefin tuna

Whereas poaching substantially reduces endangered animal populations, legal, for-profit, private farming does the opposite. It has substantially increased the populations of the southern black rhinoceros and southern white rhinoceros. Richard Emslie, a scientific officer at the IUCN, said of such programs, "Effective law enforcement has become much easier now that the animals are largely privately owned... We have been able to bring local communities into conservation programs. There are increasingly strong economic incentives attached to looking after rhinos rather than simply poaching: from Eco-tourism or selling them on for a profit. So many owners are keeping them secure. The private sector has been key to helping our work." [45]

Conservation experts view the effect of China's turtle farming on the wild turtle populations of China and South-Eastern Asia  – many of which are endangered – as "poorly understood". [46] Although they commend the gradual replacement of turtles caught wild with farm-raised turtles in the marketplace – the percentage of farm-raised individuals in the "visible" trade grew from around 30% in 2000 to around 70% in 2007 [47]  – they worry that many wild animals are caught to provide farmers with breeding stock. The conservation expert Peter Paul van Dijk noted that turtle farmers often believe that animals caught wild are superior breeding stock. Turtle farmers may, therefore, seek and catch the last remaining wild specimens of some endangered turtle species. [47]

In 2015, researchers in Australia managed to coax southern bluefin tuna to breed in landlocked tanks, raising the possibility that fish farming may be able to save the species from overfishing. [48]

Success stories

  1. Hawaiian Monk Seal Rehabilitation: The Hawaiian monk seal are one of the most endangered seal species in the world. Conservation initiatives have focused on mitigating human-seal conflicts, rehabilitating injured seals, and extensive monitoring to ensure their survival. These efforts have led to a gradual increase in their population. [49]
  2. Restoration of the American Bald Eagle: Once on the brink of extinction in the contiguous United States with only 417 known nesting pairs in 1963 due to pesticide use and habitat destruction, the Bald Eagle population has made a remarkable recovery. By 2020, the number of nesting pairs had surged to 71,400. Thanks to habitat protection, legal protection, and DDT ban efforts, leading to the bald eagle being removed from the list of threatened and endangered species. [50] [51]
  3. The Gray Wolf Rebound: Starting in 1995 and 1996, 31 gray wolves from western Canada were relocated to Yellowstone, where they were temporarily kept in acclimation pens before being released into the wild. This careful reintroduction aimed to restore a key predator to the ecosystem, which had profound effects on the park's wildlife dynamics. After being nearly eradicated in the lower 48 states by the early 20th century, reintroduction and protective measures have allowed their populations to rebound significantly. By 2017, gray wolves were delisted in Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming, indicating a recovery to a point where they were no longer considered endangered in these areas. [52] [53]
  4. Recovery of the Channel Island Fox: Beginning in 1999, the Channel Islands National Park launched an ambitious recovery program for the island fox, incorporating several key strategies: captive breeding and reintroduction, removal of predatory golden eagles, re-establishment of bald eagles, and eradication of non-native ungulates. The U.S. Department of the Interior officially recognized the recovery as the fastest for any Endangered Species Act-listed mammal in the U.S., announcing the delisting of three island fox subspecies in 2016. This recovery, from near extinction in the late 1990s to robust populations by the mid-2010s, underscores the power of partnership-driven conservation. [54] [55]

See also

IUCN Red List

Related Research Articles

This is an index of conservation topics. It is an alphabetical index of articles relating to conservation biology and conservation of the natural environment.

<i>Ex situ</i> conservation Preservation of plants or animals outside their natural habitats

Ex situ conservation is the process of protecting an endangered species, variety, or breed of plant or animal outside its natural habitat. For example, by removing part of the population from a threatened habitat and placing it in a new location, an artificial environment which is similar to the natural habitat of the respective animal and within the care of humans, such as a zoological park or wildlife sanctuary. The degree to which humans control or modify the natural dynamics of the managed population varies widely, and this may include alteration of living environments, reproductive patterns, access to resources, and protection from predation and mortality.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Threatened species</span> IUCN conservation category

A threatened species is any species which is vulnerable to extinction in the near future. Species that are threatened are sometimes characterised by the population dynamics measure of critical depensation, a mathematical measure of biomass related to population growth rate. This quantitative metric is one method of evaluating the degree of endangerment without direct reference to human activity.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Endangered Species Act of 1973</span> United States law

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 is the primary law in the United States for protecting and conserving imperiled species. Designed to protect critically imperiled species from extinction as a "consequence of economic growth and development untempered by adequate concern and conservation", the ESA was signed into law by President Richard Nixon on December 28, 1973. The Supreme Court of the United States described it as "the most comprehensive legislation for the preservation of endangered species enacted by any nation". The purposes of the ESA are two-fold: to prevent extinction and to recover species to the point where the law's protections are not needed. It therefore "protect[s] species and the ecosystems upon which they depend" through different mechanisms. For example, section 4 requires the agencies overseeing the Act to designate imperiled species as threatened or endangered. Section 9 prohibits unlawful ‘take,’ of such species, which means to "harass, harm, hunt..." Section 7 directs federal agencies to use their authorities to help conserve listed species. The Act also serves as the enacting legislation to carry out the provisions outlined in The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). The Supreme Court found that "the plain intent of Congress in enacting" the ESA "was to halt and reverse the trend toward species extinction, whatever the cost." The Act is administered by two federal agencies, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). FWS and NMFS have been delegated by the Act with the authority to promulgate any rules and guidelines within the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) to implement its provisions.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Key deer</span> Subspecies of deer endemic to the Florida Keys

The Key deer is an endangered subspecies of the white-tailed deer that lives only in the Florida Keys. It is the smallest extant North American deer species.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildlife conservation</span> Practice of protecting wild plant and animal species and their habitats

Wildlife conservation refers to the practice of protecting wild species and their habitats in order to maintain healthy wildlife species or populations and to restore, protect or enhance natural ecosystems. Major threats to wildlife include habitat destruction, degradation, fragmentation, overexploitation, poaching, pollution, climate change, and the illegal wildlife trade. The IUCN estimates that 42,100 species of the ones assessed are at risk for extinction. Expanding to all existing species, a 2019 UN report on biodiversity put this estimate even higher at a million species. It is also being acknowledged that an increasing number of ecosystems on Earth containing endangered species are disappearing. To address these issues, there have been both national and international governmental efforts to preserve Earth's wildlife. Prominent conservation agreements include the 1973 Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). There are also numerous nongovernmental organizations (NGO's) dedicated to conservation such as the Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, and Conservation International.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Conservation status</span> Indication of the chance of extinction

The conservation status of a group of organisms indicates whether the group still exists and how likely the group is to become extinct in the near future. Many factors are taken into account when assessing conservation status: not simply the number of individuals remaining, but the overall increase or decrease in the population over time, breeding success rates, and known threats. Various systems of conservation status are in use at international, multi-country, national and local levels, as well as for consumer use such as sustainable seafood advisory lists and certification. The two international systems are by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wyoming toad</span> Species of amphibian

The Wyoming toad, also known commonly as Baxter's toad, is a species of toad in the family Bufonidae. The Wyoming toad is an extremely rare amphibian that exists only in captivity and within Mortenson Lake National Wildlife Refuge in Wyoming in the United States. The Wyoming toad was listed as an endangered species in 1984, and listed as extinct in the wild since 1991. As with black-footed ferrets at the Tom Thorne and Beth Williams Wildlife Research Center at Sybille in Wheatland, Wyoming, the effort to save the Wyoming toad has been a cooperative effort among state and federal agencies and private landowners. The Wyoming toad was common from the 1950s through the early 1970s, but its distribution was limited to the Laramie Basin in Albany County. The population crashed around 1975 and was extremely low by 1980. The Wyoming toad was federally listed as endangered in January 1984. To prevent extinction, a captive-breeding program began in 1989 at the Thorne Williams Unit that produced enough offspring in its first few years to supply seven zoos, and in 1998 the Saratoga National Fish Hatchery received captive-breeding stock. Nearly 46,000 offspring were produced at the Thorne Williams Unit from 1995 until 2006, when the remaining captive stock was moved to the Red Buttes Environmental Biology Laboratory south of Laramie, and then released back into the wild. Before the sharp declines occurred, this toad had been originally classified as Bufo hemiophrys baxteri, a subspecies of the Canadian toad, by Kenneth Raymond Porter in 1968.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Key West National Wildlife Refuge</span> United States National Wildlife Refuge in Florida

The Key West National Wildlife Refuge is a 189,497 acre (766.867 km2) National Wildlife Refuge located in Monroe County, Florida, between Key West, Florida and the Dry Tortugas. Only 2,019 acres (8.171 km2) of land are above sea level, on several keys within the refuge. These keys are unpopulated and are also designated as Wilderness within the Florida Keys Wilderness. The refuge was established to provide a preserve and breeding ground for native birds and other wildlife as well as to provide habitat and protection for endangered and threatened fish, wildlife, plants and migratory birds.

An endangered species recovery plan, also known as a species recovery plan, species action plan, species conservation action, or simply recovery plan, is a document describing the current status, threats and intended methods for increasing rare and endangered species population sizes. Recovery plans act as a foundation from which to build a conservation effort to preserve animals which are under threat of extinction. More than 320 species have died out and the world is continuing a rate of 1 species becoming extinct every two years. Climate change is also linked to several issues relating to extinct species and animals' quality of life.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Western barred bandicoot</span> Species of marsupial

The Western barred bandicoot, also known as the Shark Bay bandicoot or the Marl, is a small species of bandicoot; now extinct across most of its former range, the western barred bandicoot only survives on offshore islands and in fenced sanctuaries on the mainland.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bird conservation</span> Field in the science of conservation biology related to threatened birds

Bird conservation is a field in the science of conservation biology related to threatened birds. Humans have had a profound effect on many bird species. Over one hundred species have gone extinct in historical times, although the most dramatic human-caused extinctions occurred in the Pacific Ocean as humans colonised the islands of Melanesia, Polynesia and Micronesia, during which an estimated 750–1,800 species of birds became extinct. According to Worldwatch Institute, many bird populations are currently declining worldwide, with 1,200 species facing extinction in the next century. The biggest cited reason surrounds habitat loss. Other threats include overhunting, accidental mortality due to structural collisions, long-line fishing bycatch, pollution, competition and predation by pet cats, oil spills and pesticide use and climate change. Governments, along with numerous conservation charities, work to protect birds in various ways, including legislation, preserving and restoring bird habitat, and establishing captive populations for reintroductions.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildlife of Jordan</span> Flora and fauna of Jordan

The wildlife of Jordan includes its flora and fauna and their natural habitats. Although much of the country is desert, it has several geographic regions, each with a diversity of plants and animals adapted to their own particular habitats. Fossil finds show that in Palaeolithic times, the region had Syrian brown bears, Asiatic lions, zebras, Asian elephants, and rhinoceroses, but these species are all now extinct in this region.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Species translocation</span> Human relocation of plants or animals

Translocation is the human action of moving an organism from one area and releasing it in another. In terms of wildlife conservation, its objective is to improve the conservation status of the translocated organism or to restore the function and processes of the ecosystem the organism is entering.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildlife of Ethiopia</span> Flora and fauna of Ethiopia

The richness and variety of the wildlife of Ethiopia is dictated by the great diversity of terrain with wide variations in climate, soils, natural vegetation and settlement patterns. Ethiopia contains a vast highland complex of mountains and dissected plateaus divided by the Great Rift Valley, which runs generally southwest to northeast and is surrounded by lowlands, steppes, or semi-desert.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Painted terrapin</span> Species of turtle

The painted terrapin, painted batagur, or saw-jawed turtle is a species of turtles in the family Geoemydidae. It was formerly in its own genus, Callagur, but has been reclassified to the genus, Batagur.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act</span> United States federal statute

The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act is a United States federal statute that protects two species of eagle. The bald eagle was chosen as a national emblem of the United States by the Continental Congress of 1782 and was given legal protection by the Bald Eagle Protection Act of 1940. This act was expanded to include the golden eagle in 1962. Since the original Act, the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act has been amended several times. It currently prohibits anyone, without a permit issued by the Secretary of the Interior, from "taking" bald eagles. Taking is described to include their parts, nests, or eggs, molesting or disturbing the birds. The Act provides criminal penalties for persons who "take, possess, sell, purchase, barter, offer to sell, purchase or barter, transport, export or import, at any time or any manner, any bald eagle ... [or any golden eagle], alive or dead, or any part, nest, or egg thereof."

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Conservation-reliant species</span>

Conservation-reliant species are animal or plant species that require continuing species-specific wildlife management intervention such as predator control, habitat management and parasite control to survive, even when a self-sustainable recovery in population is achieved.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Conservation behavior</span>

Conservation behavior is the interdisciplinary field about how animal behavior can assist in the conservation of biodiversity. It encompasses proximate and ultimate causes of behavior and incorporates disciplines including genetics, physiology, behavioral ecology, and evolution.

An out-of-danger species is an animal or plant species formerly categorized as Rare, Vulnerable, or Endangered that has since been removed from these lists because the species' survival has been relatively secured, e.g. Ginkgo biloba. Often known as a delisted species, these animals have been moved out of the Rare, Vulnerable, or Endangered categories through conservation efforts and government policymaking to ensure their survival and population growth. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) established its list of endangered species in 1964, subsequently becoming a global authority on wildlife conservation. The following year, the United States created the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to act as a federal authority on endangered species. Currently, both international and domestic organizations implement recovery efforts and track species' population growth, delisting when necessary. Removing a species from the endangered species list is generally a slow process; most organizations and governments require long periods of observation both before and after delisting. There have been numerous efforts to delist endangered species, with both international and country-wide recovery plans being regularly implemented. These programs have led to the recovery of dozens of species, but their overall effectiveness remains contested.


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Further reading