Which aniamal do you think will be extinct next

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tree Kangaroo

Tree-kangaroos are macropods adapted for life in trees.
Unlike their close cousins, their arms and legs are approximately the same length. Tree kangaroos also have much stronger fore-limbs to help in climbing the trees they inhabit.
They are mostly found in the rainforests of New Guinea, the far north east of Queensland and nearby islands, usually in mountainous areas.
Although mainly found in mountainous areas, several species also occur in lowlands, such as the aptly named Lowlands Tree-kangaroo.
Living in the trees, the tree kangaroo eats mostly leaves and fruit, though they’ll eat out of the trees as well as collecting fruit that has fallen to the ground.
The animals will also eat other items such as grains, flowers, sap, eggs, young birds, and even bark.
Their teeth are adpated for eating and tearing leaves. However they are not true ruminants (like cows that have 4 stomachs) but they do have dense baterial populations in their esophagus, stomachs and the upper part of the small intestine so that they can get the most energy and nutrients from the fibrous mass of vegetation that they consume.
The interesting thing about tree kanagroos is that they stuck to their roots.
Millions of years ago the early Marcopods (kangaroos) came down from the trees and started to evolve their unique way of living and moving. However, at some point on this evolutionary timescale, the tree kangaroos decided to return to the trees... and no one has yet found out why.


As few as 3,200

Wild tiger numbers are at an all-time low. The largest of all the Asian big cats may be on top of the food chain and one of the most culturally important and best-loved animals, but they are also vulnerable to extinction. Tigers are forced to compete for space with dense human populations, face unrelenting pressure from poaching, retaliatory killings and habitat loss across their range.

There is still hope

We can save wild tigers. WWF has set a bold but achievable goal of Tx2: doubling the number of tigers in the wild by 2022, when the next Year of the Tiger is celebrated. We are concentrating our efforts on protecting key landscapes where the big cats have the best chance of surviving and increasing over the long-term. Five decades of conservation experience has shown us that given enough space, prey and protection, tigers can recover.
By saving tigers, we also save the biologically rich and diverse landscapes where they still roam — Asia’s last great rain forests, jungles and wild lands. These forests are home to thousands of other species, people and the food, freshwater and flood protection that local communities need to survive.

The time is right

During the 2010 Year of the Tiger, Russia’s prime minister convened a tiger summit where world leaders endorsed a bold plan to save tigers. All 13 countries where tigers still roam in the wild committed to doubling the number of tigers. WWF is working to ensure those strategies are successfully implemented so that tigers get a strong start on their road to recovery.


Three tiger subspecies - the Bali, Javan, and Caspian - have become extinct in the past 70 years. The six remaining subspecies - Amur, Bengal, Indochinese, Malayan, South China, and Sumatran - live only in Asia, and all are threatened by poaching and habitat loss.
  • Amur (Siberian) Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris altaica 
    IUCN Listing: Endangered
    Habitat: Coniferous, scrub oak and birch woodlands
    Location: Primarily eastern Russia, with a few found in northeastern China
    Interesting Fact: In the 1940s the Amur tiger was on the brink of extinction, with no more than 40 tigers remaining in the wild. Thanks to vigorous anti-poaching and other conservation efforts by the Russians with support from many partners, including WWF, the Amur tiger population recovered and has remained stable throughout the last decade.
  • Bengal (Indian) Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris tigris
    IUCN Listing: Endangered
    Habitat: Dry and wet deciduous forests, grassland and temperate forests, mangrove forests
    Location: Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar and Nepal. India is home to the largest population.
    Interesting Fact: Some Bengal tigers are cream or white in color instead of orange, due to a recessive gene for this coloration. These "white" tigers are rarely found in the wild.
  • Indochinese Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris corbetti
    IUCN Listing: Endangered
    Habitat: Remote forests in hilly to mountainous terrain, much of which lies along the borders between countries
    Location: Widely dispersed throughout six countries: Thailand, Cambodia, China, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam.
    Interesting Fact: Access to the areas where Indochinese tigers live is often restricted, and biologists have only recently been granted limited permits for field surveys. As a result, relatively little is known about the status of these tigers in the wild.
  • Malayan Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris jacksoni
    IUCN Listing: Endangered
    Habitat: Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests
    Location: Southern tip of Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia
    Interesting Fact: The Malayan tiger was only identified as being a separate subspecies from the Indochinese tiger in 2004. It is very similar to the Indochinese tiger, but is smaller in size.
  • South China Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris amoyensis
    IUCN Listing: Critically Endangered
    Habitat: Montane sub-tropical evergreen forest
    Location: Central and eastern China
    Interesting Fact: It is estimated that the South China tiger is functionally extinct. Currently 47 South China tigers live in 18 zoos, all in China. If there are any South China tigers in the wild, these few individuals would be found in southeast China, close to provincial borders.
  • Sumatran Tiger

    Scientific name: Panthera tigris sumatrae
    IUCN Listing: Critically Endangered
    Habitat: Montane forests, the remaining blocks of the island's lowland forest, peat swamps, and freshwater swamp forests
    Location: Exclusively on the Indonesian island of Sumatra
    Interesting Fact: Sumatran tigers are protected by law in Indonesia, with tough provisions for jail time and steep fines. Despite increased efforts in tiger conservation, including law enforcement and anti-poaching capacity, a substantial market remains in Sumatra for tiger parts and products.

Spectacled Bear

Common Name: Spectacled bear; Andean bear; Ours Andin; Ours à lunettes (Fr); Oso frontino (Sp)

Scientific Name: Tremarctos ornatus
Habitat: Preferred habitats include cloud forests (also known as Andean forest) and high Andean moorland called 'páramo'.
Location: South America - Andes
Population: Unknown


© WWF-Canon / Edward PARKER
The spectacled bear is the only species of bear in South America and one of the most emblematic mammals of the tropical Andes. Persecution and habitat loss have contributed to a reduction of its population and probably are leading to inbreeding in some areas, raising concerns about the long-term survival of the species. Although this bear is distributed over a large area, its presence is patchy within this range.

WWF led the participatory development of an ecoregional conservation strategy for the species in the Northern Andes, with the support of other international organizations and local NGOs from Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. The strategy is being adopted by an increasing number of partners in these four countries and is helping to develop action plans at the local level.

WWF-Colombia is currently working with governmental and non-governmental partners to implement priority actions, including finding solutions to conflicts between wild bears and farmers, developing a communication campaign and identifying priority sites for bear conservation in Colombia. In Venezuela, WWF's associate organization FUDENA is leading the development of a national action plan based on the ecoregional conservation strategy.

Physical Description

Spectacled bears are robust, with a short and muscular neck, short but strong legs, each with five toes armed with curved claws up to two inches in length. As with all bears, spectacled bears walk on the soles of their feet (they are referred to as plantigrades) and have longer front than rear legs, making them excellent climbers.

Their head is rounded and compared to other bears, these animals have smaller snouts, leading to their classification as "short-faced bears" in the subfamily Tremarctinae. The spectacled bear is the only surviving member of this subfamily. The large molars and the development of the jaw muscles of the species favours its diet, largely vegetarian.

Males are up to 50% larger than females, measuring between 1.5 and 2 m from head to tail and weighing between 140 and 175 kg. Female bears are approximately two thirds the size of the males. Adult females reach up to 1.5 m in length and 80 kg in weight.

Fur is usually black, although it can have dark red-brown tones on the upper-parts. Spectacled bears sometimes have white to pale yellow markings around the muzzle, on the neck and the chest. These markings may also be present around the eyes, which is characteristic of the species and the reason for its most common name. The markings vary from one individual to another and on many occasions are totally absent.


Major habitat type
Preferred habitats include cloud forests (also known as Andean forest) and high Andean moorland called 'páramo'.

Biogeographic realm

Range States
Venezuela, Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia

Geographical Location
South America - Andes

Ecological Region
Eastern Range montane forest, Venezuelan Andes montane forest, Northwestern Andes montane forest, Cauca Valley montane forest, Magdalena Valley montane forest, Eastern Cordillera Real montane forest, Venezuelan Andes páramo, Northern Andes páramo, Central Range páramo, Peruvian Yungas, Ucayali moist forest, Central Andean puna, Bolivia Yunga, Southwestern Amazonial moist forest, Bolivan montane dry forest, Central Andean wet puna, Southern Andean yungas.

Why is this species important?

Protecting bears confers advantages to all ecosystems within the species range. Protecting the habitat of the forest's largest animal automatically benefits the rest of the forest dwellers. For this reason, the spectacled bear is considered a flagship or umbrella species.

Its conservation also benefits the protection of important water sources, as areas inhabited by the species are critical areas for water production (areas where many rivers have their source). Furthermore, high altitude landscapes are also preserved, favouring ecotourism.

The spectacled bear acts as an important indicator for the state of the forests and the areas it inhabits. Studies are being carried out to ascertain whether the bear is creating new forested areas through seed dispersion.

Since the animal eats many fruits, it may be dispersing seeds as they pass out of its digestive system or as they fall off from its copious fur coat.

Interesting Facts

Many myths exist with regard to this species in all Andean regions and countries. One of these tells how a bear captured a beautiful village girl and took her deep into the forest. The bear hid her there, or in other versions, he put her on the crown of a tree and made her his wife.

She remained the bear's prisoner for a long, long time, during which she gave birth to a son who was half-man, half-bear. When he grew up, he realised that he was more human than bear and he rescued his mother by killing his father.


Common Name: Bornean orangutan; Orangoutan de Borneo(Fr); Orangután de Borneo(Sp)

Scientific Name: Pongo pygmaeus
Habitat: Tropical and Subtropical Moist Broadleaf Forests
Location: Borneo
The Bornean orangutan is now recognized as a different species from its Sumatra relative. Three subspecies are recognized: Pongo pygmaeus pygmaeus, P.p. morio, and P. p. wurmbii, the most common Bornean subspecies. Although extensive, the latter's habitat is increasingly fragmented in the remaining swamp and lowland dipterocarp forests of Central and West Kalimantan.

It is estimated that about one third of Borneo's orangutan populations were lost during the 1997/98 forest fires. On the Indonesian side of Borneo, populations of this subspecies are not faring well either.

Although some populations live inside protected areas, illegal logging still takes place within these area and hence remains a major threat to the survival of this species.


Major habitat type
Tropical and Subtropical Moist Broadleaf Forests

Biogeographic realm

Range States
Indonesia, Malaysia

Geographical Location

Ecological Region
Borneo Lowland and Montane Forests

Sumatran Orangutan

Close relative in dire straits

Common Name: Sumatran orangutan;Orangoutan de Sumatra (Fr);Orangután de Sumatra (Sp)

Scientific Name: Pongo abelii
Habitat: Tropical and Subtropical Moist Broadleaf Forests
Location: Northern Sumatra
Population: Approximately 7,500 individuals in the wild


The Sumatran orangutan is the most endangered of the two orangutan species, and differs from its Borneo relative to some extents in appearance and behaviour. Found only in the northern and western provinces of Sumatra, Indonesia, the species is losing fast its natural habitat to agriculture and human settlements.

Physical Description

As opposed to the Bornean orangutan, the Sumatran species has long facial hair.

Body length is about 1.25-1.5 m. Adults weigh 30 to 50 kg for females and 50-90 kg for males.

The fur is reddish brown in colour.


Major habitat type
Tropical and Subtropical Moist Broadleaf Forests

Biogeographic realm

Range States

Geographical Location
Northern Sumatra

Ecological Region
Sumatran Islands Lowland and Montane Forests, Sundaland Rivers and Swamps

The Brown Bear

Common Name: Brown bear Ours brun (Fr); Oso pardo (Sp)
Scientific Name: Ursus arctos
Habitat: Temperate Broadleaf Forests
Location: Europe, Asia, Northern America
Few animals have captured the imagination like brown bears. They can stand on two legs, have eyes in the front of their heads, walk on the soles of their feet, pick things up with their 'fingers,' eat what we eat and nurse their young as we do.
§Major habitat type
Temperate Broadleaf Forests

Biogeographic realm
Nearctic, Palearctic

Range States
Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Belarus, Latvia, European Russia, Romania, Ukraine, Slovakia, Poland, Czech Republic, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Yugoslav Federation, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece, Macedonia, Albania, Austria, Italy, Bulgaria, Spain, France, Turkey, Georgia,
Azerbaijhan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, China, Mongolia, Central/eastern Russia, Japan, United States, Canada

Geographical Location
Europe, Asia, Northern America
§Why is this species important?
§Bears are considered of high priority in conservation. Given their dependence on large natural areas, they are important management indicators for a number of other wildlife species. Moreover, brown bears play important roles as predators (keeping populations in check) and as seed dispersers.


Tuna are keystone predators in temperate and tropical ocean ecosystems around the world, and are among the commercially most valuable fish on the planet.  Exports of tuna products recently exceeded USD $6 billion per year, making tuna the third most traded marine commodity after shrimp and groundfish

The principal market tunas consist of seven major species (albacore, bigeye, skipjack, yellowfin, and three species of bluefin).  Except for skipjack, tuna are widely subject to significant overfishing by fleets that are far above sustainable levels of productive capacity.  Most tuna stocks are already fully exploited, overexploited, or depleted.  Tuna fishing at both industrial and artisanal scales also disrupts ecosystems through the unsustainable bycatch of species including sharks, marine turtles, small cetaceans, and seabirds. 
WWF recently joined eight of the tuna industry’s leading companies to found the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF), a global partnership dedicated to the science-based management and conservation of tuna stocks and ocean health
§In December 2010, WWF and Mozambique’s Ministry of Fisheries made a commitment to work together to gain insight into tuna populations and have a greater role in protecting them. This strong joint effort contributes to the management of marine resources in Mozambique to benefit wildlife, habitats and people
Galapagos: Located in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean, Ecuador is an emerging tuna trade power whose tuna industry was a key antagonist in creation of the Galapagos Marine Reserve.  This ecoregion is the source of more than 17 percent of global tuna catch, 30 percent of global yellowfin catch and provides significant bluefin catch. Turtle and other bycatch from tuna fishing threaten Galapagos and surrounding ecosystems. A sustainable tuna economy is vital to bycatch reduction and marine conservation in the Galapagos.
§The Mediterranean: The Mediterranean is home to the most endangered of tuna species—Atlantic bluefin.   Almost half of global bluefin catches are from the East Atlantic/Mediterranean bluefin tuna (BFT) stock.  WWF’s longstanding campaign on BFT includes one-on-one corporate engagement and an advancing BFT boycott among institutional consumers that has already won significant corporate allies across Europe. The involvement of major canned tuna brand owners in BFT trade for sashimi presents an important focal point for WWF’s tuna commodity chain interventions.
§Coastal East Africa: Located in the Indian Ocean, East African waters are among Earth’s most fertile and least managed tuna grounds.  This ecoregion is home to 24 percent of global tuna catch, 27 percent of global yellowfin catch, and 23 percent of skipjack catch. Tuna is one of WWF’s seven focal commodities in Coastal East Africa. Improving tuna management and increasing East Africa’s share of tuna profits are important elements of our regional development strategy

Amur Leopard

Scientific Name: Panthera pardus orientalis
Habitat: temperate forests
Location: Russian Far East and Northern China
Population: Fewer than 50 individuals
The 2011 numbers are considered record-breaking compared to the past 5 years where only 7 to 9 leopards were identified each year.
The positive results point to a population increase of up to 50% in the targeted region and can be attributed to:
long term efforts made to support leopard conservation, including this annual survey conducted by WWF and partners

Most leopards are rarely found in cold or high-elevation environments, but instead live in the savannas of Africa where populations are relatively stable.

§However, the Amur leopard, a rare leopard subspecies, lives in the temperate forests and harsh winters of the Russian Far East. They are threatened by:

§unsustainable logging

§forest fires

§land conversion for farming

§poaching for the illegal trade of their unique spotted coats

§To protect the Amur leopard WWF works to:

§Support anti-poaching activities in wildlife refuges and all Amur leopard habitat in the Russian Far East

§Implement programs to stop the illegal trade  in Amur leopard parts

§Increase the population of hooved species leopards hunt as prey (roe deer, sika deer and small wild boar)

§Physical description
The Amur leopard has a summer pelt of 1 inch thick fur that is replaced in the winter by 3 inch thick fur to provide warmth. Its coat is covered with widely spaced circles with thick borders and its long legs, used to walk in the snow, distinguish it from other leopard species.

§Adult males weigh between 70 and 105 pounds and adult females weigh between 55 and 95 pounds. Amur leopards have been reported using their long legs to leap more than 19 feet horizontally and more than 9 feet vertically.