Meet the Animals that Became Endangered Last Year

As we venture farther into 2016, it’s always good to reflect back on the previous year. Today, we are reflecting on animals that were either declared endangered or were upgraded from endangered to critically endangered in 2015.

1. Mexican Wolf

Photo by Eric Kilby / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Eric Kilby / CC BY-SA 2.0
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) declared the Mexican Wolf as endangered earlier in 2015. Over-hunting almost wiped out the entire population 40 years ago. Now, the Mexican Wolf has new protections to conserve this rare mammal.

 
2. Sawfish

Photo by Simon Fraser University - University Communications / CC BY 2.0
Photo by Simon Fraser University – University Communications / CC BY 2.0
The USFWS placed multiple species of sawfish on the endangered species list in 2015. Several populations have fallen victim to overfishing and negative human factors.

 
3. Steppe Eagle

Photo by Bernard DUPONT / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Bernard DUPONT / CC BY-SA 2.0
The Steppe Eagle was upgraded to “endangered” this year by the IUCN because of changes to the raptor’s environment. Habitat disturbances, such as agricultural development and a veterinary drug spreading toxic effects through its ecosystem, have caused the eagle’s population to drastically drop.

 
4. New Zealand Sea Lion

Photo by Rosino / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Rosino / CC BY-SA 2.0
The IUCN classified the New Zealand Sea Lion as endangered due to “fishing-related mortality” and other threats from disease and food limitations. It is one of the rarest sea lions in the world with a population of around 10,000 and decreasing.

 
5. White Headed Vulture

Photo by Bernard DUPONT / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Bernard DUPONT / CC BY-SA 2.0
In 2015, the IUCN upgraded the status of the White Headed Vulture from threatened to critically endangered. The vulture’s population has declined because of human threats, including poisonings and persecution.

 
6. Great Green Macaw & Military Macaw

Photo by Susanne Nilsson / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Susanne Nilsson / CC BY-SA 2.0
The USFWS listed both the Great Green Macaw and the Military Macaw as endangered in October, 2015. The two species’ already small populations are declining due to poaching and habitat loss, fragmentation and degradation.

 
7. Ishikawa’s Frog

Photo by Patrick Randall / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
Photo by Patrick Randall / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
The IUCN declared the Ishikawa’s Frog, a Japanese amphibian, as an endangered species in 2015. The frog population is in serious decline because of habitat loss from dam and road construction.

 
8. Honduran Emerald Hummingbird

Photo by Dominic Sherony / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Dominic Sherony / CC BY-SA 2.0
The USFWS classified the Honduran hummingbird as endangered in 2015, which gives federal officials in the U.S. the authority to prosecute anyone smuggling the bird across the border. The population has dropped to 5,000-10,000 breeding pairs after facing habitat loss and other human-related changes.

 
9. Narrow-striped Mongoose (also known as Boky Boky)

Photo by Marie Hale / CC BY 2.0
Photo by Marie Hale / CC BY 2.0
In 2015, the IUCN placed the Narrow-striped Mongoose, also know as the boky boky, on the endangered list. The small Madagascan mammal’s population has been negatively affected by hunting, logging and several environmental factors.

 
10. Splendid Toadfish

Photo by Tam Warner Minton / CC BY-SA 2.0
Photo by Tam Warner Minton / CC BY-SA 2.0
The IUCN upgraded the Splendid Toadfish from threatened to endangered in 2015 because of tourism and over-fishing. It is a mud-dwelling fish that lives in the waters of Cozumel and Belize, but has experienced habitat loss with decreasing coral reefs.

 
 
Featured image by Eric Kilby / CC BY-SA 2.0

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