Animals have been on Earth for around 800 million years, and yet so many species have gone extinct and continue to do so. We have to stop more species from going extinct and you can help. “Extinct” is a term that means a particular animal or plant species have died out and there are no more of it in the world. Contrary to popular belief, dinosaurs aren’t the only species to go extinct.
The first mention of the Dodo bird was recorded in 1598, and the last time they were seen was in 1662, according to onekindplanet. This was also the first of many animals to have been driven to extinction by humans. The Dodo, an extinct, flightless bird of Mauritius, were hunted by humans until there were no more of their kind. A lot of species’ extinctions are due to humans, but not all. Some other reasons for extinction are loss and degradation of habitat, meaning that species’ home wasn’t suitable for them to function in anymore. Another reason is over exploitation which is when creatures are hunted or overfished. Other reasons that can lead them to extinction are invasive species, climate change, and pollution.
Now, in 2021, there are still animal species that are going extinct. Some species that went extinct in the past year include Splendid Poison Frog, Jalpa False Brook Salamander, Simeulue Hill Myna, and 12 more. Last year was considered the “Sixth Mass Extinction.” There are other species that are thought to be extinct, but can’t yet be proven.
There are a lot of species that are endangered, meaning their rates for going extinct are very high. There are way too many to list, but a few are the: Amur Leopard, Black Rhino, Bornean Orangutan, Cross River Gorilla, and many more.
Ways you can stop these species from going extinct are by donating to WorldWildLife. This organization makes it their mission to protect species that are threatened around the world. Another way to prevent extinction is by doing research about endangered species in your area. Securing garbage with locking lids and reducing your use of water in your home is important so animals that live in or near water can have better chances of survival. Placing decals on windows to deter bird collisions will help a lot as well, due to the millions of birds that die annually due to collisions with windows.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have great tips and information on more you can do to stop mass extinction. Joining the Endangered Species Coalition Activist Network keeps you up to date on actions you can take to protect endangered species. They will send you emails and/or texts about events and actions. Keeping up to date on topics such as these are very important because we need to help out animals just like they help us.