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15 of Earth's Most Endangered Species

Interest March 21, 2018 By Hugo

Yesterday's news that the world's last male northern white rhino had become "functionally extinct" sent shockwaves throughout the world of animal conservation, and to anyone with an inkling of respect for nature.

Shutterstock/Fernando Carnevale

Describing the news as a "uniquely bad situation", Colin Butfield, head of campaigns at conservation charity WWF, was no doubt left wondering if other animals facing near-extinction would soon follow suit.

With that in mind, here are 15 animals most threatened with extinction.

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1. Ivory-Billed Woodpecker

One of the most endangered species known to man, the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker resides in the Southeastern US and certain areas of Cuba.

Wikimedia/Jerry A. Payne

Noted for its long woodpecker, the species is believed to be down to a meagre number, and sightings-while reported- have never fully be verified by experts. In 2008, a reward of $50,000 was even offered by the Nature Conservancy to a person who could lead a project biologist to a living ivory-billed woodpecker.

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2. The Amur Leopard

Native to Russia’s Primorye region, you will not find the lithe, exotic Amur leopard anywhere else. Snowy and often well below freezing, the habitat is perfect for this endangered species thanks to its thick and spoty coat.

Wikimedia/ William Warby

Once found in Korea and China, the leopard no longer resides there due to a plethora of factors, which include the all-too-real threat of poaching, the construction of new roads, poaching of prey, and forest fires. The rarest big cat in the world, Census records show there are only around 20 adult Amur leopards in existence.

3. Lemur
While there are over 100 different species of Lemur, every kind is endangered. Calling the tropical, African Island of Madagascar home, they remain a huge draw for tourists, but spotting them in their local habitat is increasingly rare.

Shutterstock/ Natalia van D

Bizarrely, they are not yet on the critically endangered species list, despite their sighting being rare.

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4. Vaquita

Vaquita belongs to the porpoise species. Since tracking on them was enabled, figures have shown population declines of 15-25% a year since 1945.

Wikimedia/ Paula Olson

There are only 500-600 species left, found in the Gulf of California, between Mexico and Baja California. Climate change is thought to be a contributing factor of their decline due to the adverse impact weather changes have had on their habitat and source of food.

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