1/4 of Mammals At Risk for Extinction

A Quarter of Mammals At Risk for Extinction

· At least 25 percent of the world’s wild mammals are at risk of extinction, according to a survey released yesterday.

Mammals that live on land face hunting and the loss of their habitat, while those that live in the water are threatened by pollution and by accidental killing through fishing and being struck by ships.

Large species such as primates (including the Sumatran orangutan and red colobus monkeys) and ungulates (hoofed animals) are more threatened than small creatures, such as rodents and bats.

Large mammals are less common than smaller ones, they are hunted more often and they need more land to survive.

Primates face some of the most intense pressures. The report said that 79 percent of primates in South and Southeast Asia, including the Hainan gibbon, are facing extinction.

Scientists list the Dama gazelle, which lives in Africa, and the Malaysian tapir as endangered hoofed animals.

The report was conducted by 1,700 experts in 130 countries over five years by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. The findings cover 5,487 wild mammal species identified.

Source: Washington Post

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~ by DarkLight on October 7, 2008.

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