Man may be the most powerful species on this green planet but he is undeniably the most selfish and destructive one. Relentlessly felling trees to make new concrete jungles, killing millions of animals daily for ‘food’ and also killing some of the uncommon species for leather goods and other products – these are some of the worst and anti-environmental activities that o nly so called ‘homo sapiens’ commit. Meanwhile, other endangered species are fighting for their survival because of loss of habitat, hunting and poaching.
Here are ten animals that have gone extinct and unfortunately may never see again due to this:
1. Thylacine – Also known as Tasmanian Tiger, Thylacine was the largest known carnivorous marsupial of modern times. It was wiped out due to constant hunting and encroachment of humans on their already limited habitat. The last one died in the Hobart Zoo due to sheer neglect.
2. Quagga – A southern sub species of the Plains Zebra, it differed from other zebras by mainly having stripes on the head, neck, and front portion of its body, and having a very light brown patch on its upper parts. The Quagga became extinct as it was ruthlessly hunted down for meat and leather by South African farmers.
3. West African Black Rhino – The rarest of the rhino sub species, the Black Rhino of West Africa is considered ‘critically endangered’ but researchers affirm that they are already extinct. The reason? Anti-environmental poaching for rhino’s skin and horn!
4. Black Faced Honeycreeper – A beautiful bird that was found in Hawaii’s green island of Maui and is now listed as possibly extinct. Of the three known birds discovered in 1998, one died in captivity and other two were not seen since 2004. Destruction of its natural eco habitat is responsible for the birds’ decline.
5. Caribbean Monk Seal – This was the only seal native to the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico It has been hunted for oil and slaughtered by fishermen who regarded them as their ‘competitors’. Its typically non-aggressive and curious nature has caused it to be an easy victim for man.
6. Pyrenean Ibex – This was one of the first animals to be brought back into existence via cloning but went extinct again just seven minutes after birth due to lung failure.
7. Bubal Hartebeest – This harmless, deer like animal once roamed throughout North Africa and the Middle East, but European hunters killed it for ‘fun’ and meat. Large herds were wiped out due to hunting and the remaining ones died in captivity and zoos.
8. Baiji River Dolphin – Population of this river mammal declined drastically in recent decades because of China’s industrialized anti-environmental ways and their heavy use of its rivers for fishing, transportation, and hydroelectricity.
9. Javan Tiger – These were sub-species of tigers, limited to the Indonesian island of Java. With increasing human population, large parts of the island were cultivated and this led to the loss of their natural habitat. Javan tigers were ruthlessly hunted down or poisoned wherever man moved in.
10. Tecopa Pupfish – The popularity of Tecopa Hot Springs in the 1950s and 1960s led to the construction of hotels and trailer parks in the area and the fish started disappearing. By 1981 the Tecopa Pupfish was officially the first animal declared extinct according to the provisions of the Endangered Species Act of 1973.
The extinction of animal species is one of the worst and saddest consequences of our neglect towards the planet. The human species must come together to stop this from continuing to happen…before we too become extinct.