Many animals worldwide, from toads to tigers, are disappearing. According to a leading global conversation body, one in four mammals is facing the threat of extinction. That means, at least 25% of mammal species, are at risk of extinction. Most mammals are facing extinction because of hunting, habitat loss and climate change.
The Red List of threatened species (presented by World Conservation Congress, Barcelona) says populations of more than half of the mammal species are falling, with Asian primates particularly at risk. South and Southeast Asia are home to the most threatened mammals, from monkeys to rare rats.
The Indian tarantulas also feature on the Red list and they are highly prized by collectors. The Rameshwaram parachute spider, whose habitat has been eroded by new roads, was found to be critically endangered. The group said that the natural habitat of the spiders’ is almost completely destroyed.
The Red List looks at 5,487 mammals, and concludes that 1,141 are currently on the path towards disappearance. The authors caution that this might be an under-estimate, as there is not enough data to make an assessment. The true figure could be nearer to one-third….
Extinction is a normal process. Natural extinction happens when a species declines in numbers gradually but steadily at the end of its evolutionary period. But what we are facing is very rapid. The speed at which this is happening is unnatural. At the rate at which hunting and habitat loss is rising, there is very less chance for these animals to survive. The increase in the rate of extinction is directly related to population explosion. The vast number of human population has caused great damage to the Earth. It has forced animals to move to smaller areas. We have also polluted natural habitat of mammals with chemical wastes.
How does it effect us?
The IUCN has tated that mammal endangerment is more dangerous than the financial crisis. The financial crisis would be affecting a few people but this crisis would affect the entire world.
Such disregard towards the environment, natural diversity and beauty, mass extinction of mammals will also cause major imbalance in the ecosystem and the food-chain. When a predator is extinct, the prey multiplies, and dies out. If the prey is extinct, the predator also disappears. There is an inter-connection among all the species.
How to save them?
The first step towards saving mammals is to get as much information possible about them. If we know how they live, where they live and what they need to survive it becomes much easier to save them.
Creating awareness about the issue among people is very important.
We must learn from our mistakes and save the forests and also save the mammals from being hunted.
What can you do?
1. Contribute to natural reserves. Protection of their habitat is the best way to save animals from extinction.
2. Buy environmental friendly goods
3. Say no to animal products like fur, ivory and tortoiseshell
4. Say no to products that are tested on animals
5. Join a local, national or global conversation organization
6. Recycle,Reduce and Reuse