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PHOTO GALLERY: Species on the Edge of Survival

Ruth Styles

1st September, 2011

From the tiger to the bumblebee, the list of endangered birds, animals and insects is a growing one. Now a new book based on the IUCN Red List is providing an insight into the species under threat

Some of the names on the list are familiar and some aren’t, but all are endangered and all could be lost forever in the not too distant future. The tiger, the polar bear, the Tasmanian Devil and the blue-throated macaw are under threat from habitat loss, global warming, pollution and hunting. Lesser known species such as the Northern Muriqui and Phyllomedusa are in equal trouble, and while the Humphead Wrasse and Franklin’s Bumble Bee aren’t about to win first prize in a beauty contest, their survival is of utmost importance.

Species on the Edge of Survival is a new book based on the birds, animals, invertebrates and plants currently appearing on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s [IUCN] Red List. The list, updated annually, tracks the species whose existence is under threat, and more are being added each year. With poaching on the rise, the future for big game such as the black rhino and the African elephant is looking bleak. Other less-striking species such as the Stephens Island Weta (a big beetle), are also facing significant challenges. Species on the Edge of Survival introduces 365 of the most vulnerable animals, plants and fish on the planet, outlining what they are, where they come from and what’s putting them at risk of following the dodo’s path to extinction. Whether you choose to get involved by supporting conservation charities, petitioning your local MP or simply by buying the book, it’s clear that the planet’s wildlife needs our help now more than ever.

Blue-throated Macaw (Photo: Marvin Hyett)

 

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