What was the last animal to go extinct? You probably don’t even know. Most people don’t because animal species are dropping like flies all over the world. It’s pretty much impossible to know how many species have disappeared over the last few years due to so much deforestation, habitat loss, pollution, poaching, etc.. But here are some of the most notable, thanks to the efforts of The International Union of Conservation of Nature and their endangered/extinct species lists.
Mexican Grizzly Bear
The Mexican grizzly bear inhabited the northern territories of Mexico, in particular the temperate grasslands and mountainous pine forests. Its previous range reached from Arizona to New Mexico and Mexico. They were heavily trapped for their furs, and shot by ranchers because they were considered pests for attacking livestock when food started running low in the area. They were thought to be extinct in the 1900’s, but a man in Sonora, Mexico shot one in 1976. They haven’t been seen since.
The gastric brooding frog were unique and rare species of frog. Due to their strange reproduction stages they were subject of scientific experiments in pharmaceutical and other scientific laboratories. They became extinct in 1990.
Dusky Seaside Sparrow
Dusky seaside sparrows were a non-migratory songbird native to Southern Florida. They were beautiful and had a very unique birdcall. However due to their demand for captive breeding they declined in numbers. The last Dusky Seaside sparrow finally died out in 1987 due to unsuccessful breeding programs.
The Mariana Mallard was a species of Duck family that mainly resided in the Mariana Island. The growth of concrete construction in the area as well as over-hunting led to their extinction. The last Mariana Mallard duck is believed to have been killed in 1981.
Pinta Island Tortoise
The last known individual of the species was a male named Lonesome George who died on 24 June 2012. In his last years, he was known as the rarest creature in the world. George served as a potent symbol for conservation efforts in the Galápagos and internationally.
The Great Auk was a flightless bird and looked similar to penguins. Due to the high demand of its meat in Europe and America, the Great Auk’s population declined. The great auk is said to have gone extinct in the 1970s.
Western Black Rhinoceros
Western Black Rhinoceros was hunted for it’s stunningly long horns. For trophies and for the IUCN declared them extinct in 2011. They would have become extinct by the early 20th century but strong conservation laws saved them for a while longer. Sadly, poachers still found a way to kill the last western black rhino in 2014.
The Zanzibar leopards were endemic to the Tanzanian state of Australia. They were very skilled predators and were considered a threat to human beings and livestock. This led to their mass killings and thus by 1997 they were extinct.
Alaotra Grebe was confined to the Alaotra lake in Madagascar due to its wings that we’re too small to let them fly great distances. The Alaotra grebe became rare due to over hunting and it become extinct in 1985.
Canary Islands Oystercatcher
Canarian Oystercatcher was another marine bird. The Canarian Oystercatcher became a rare species in 1900s and due extensive hunting it became extinct by the 1970s.
This sub species of Spanish Ibex or Spanish goat got extinct in January 2000. Pyrenean Ibex came out of extinction for few hours in 2003. A Cloned Ibex was born but it died within hours.
The International Union of Conservation for Nature declared the Golden toad an extinct species in 1989. The Golden toad became the poster boy of Extinct Amphibian Species. Scientists claim that Global warming is one of the main reasons of extinct of Golden Toad, while many others claim it was pollution.
The Baiji Dolphin is now claimed to be extinct since 2002. Ironically, in China the Baiji dolphin was considered to be the living form of a Goddess and yet it was unprotected anyway. The main reason of extinction is trophy hunting, pollution and boat traffic.
Javan tigers were the inhabitants of Java Island in Indonesia for centuries. However by the turn of 20th century they hit the endangered species list. By World War 2, Javan tigers became so rare that the zoos that kept them as prize attractions also shut down. By 1970 the Javan tiger became totally extinct, mostly thanks to the continuous deforestation of Java island.
So who do you think should be blamed for the extinction of these beautiful species? Nature? Poachers? Government? Hunters? Humans in general? What step do you think should be taken in order to preserve the endangered animals?