Monday 12 November 2018

Endangered: Species under threat as decades of damage to habitats revealed

Polar bear numbers are projected to decline by 30pc
Polar bear numbers are projected to decline by 30pc

Examples of species suffering dramatic population decline, according to the WWF:

:: African grey parrot populations in south-west Ghana decreased by 98pc between 1992 and 2014 due to exploitation and damage to their habitat.

:: The whale shark population in the Indo-Pacific is estimated to have fallen 63pc over the last 75 years, and in the Atlantic by more than 30pc, so that globally populations are thought to have fallen by more than 50pc over the last 75 years.

:: African elephant populations in Tanzania have declined by 60pc between 2009 and 2014, mostly due to poaching for their ivory.

:: Populations of black and white rhinos are down by an average of 63pc between 1980 and 2006, with the illegal wildlife trade for their horns the biggest threat.

:: Polar bear numbers are projected to decline by 30pc by 2050, as climate change melts the Arctic ice and reduces their ability to hunt, find mates and rear young.

:: More than 100,000 Bornean orangutans are estimated to have been lost between 1999 and 2015, due to the loss of forests for timber, palm oil plantations and hunting.

:: Puffin numbers in Europe, which is home to 90pc of the global population, is projected to fall by 50-79pc between 2000 and 2065 in the face of climate change and overfishing.

:: Populations of the wandering albatross have seen rapid declines as the birds are accidentally caught in long-line fisheries, with one population from Bird Island, South Georgia, falling 50pc between 1972 and 2010.

Irish Independent

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