Endangered Animals

By Lily Jing, Year 8 Zoo Snooze Assessment Task

Critically Endangered Species

Many animals in the world today are becoming endangered. This is mainly due to the destruction of habitats, pollution, hunting and fishing, and the chance of introducing an exotic species to an area bringing diseases with it. This flyer will be focusing on a certain endangered species of fauna. It is called the Tragelaphus Eurycerus Isaaci, better known as the Eastern Bongo. It is a critically endangered species and is said to have less than 140 animals remaining in the wild.

Habitat and Diet

They are usually found in the African Plains and the Ford African rain forest. They can be found anywhere from eastern parts of Africa in dense vegetation and rain forests. In the zoo, their enclosure was filled with rocky ledges and red rusty dirt unlike to what a African plain would look like. But the rocks were large and were built steeply so Bongos had to climb around the enclosure. This isn't difficult for them though because they have hoofed feet that can easily grip and climb.

The Eastern Bongo is a herbivorous mammal which its diet consists of leaves, roots, bark and grasses. They eat under the cover of the night to keep them safe from carnivorous predators that they share their homeland with. In the zoo, they were fed a assortment of grasses and roots.

Adaptations

Bongos are likely to be preyed upon easily in the day so they are only active at night, to eat and roam around. Their white and red skin colour helps them camouflage with their surroundings of the African Plains and is easily invisible from afar. It runs elegantly and at full speed, can even speed through the thickest tangles of lianas (a thick vine). Its spiraled horns lay on it's back so that it won't interrupt or impede its running. These adaptions are important for them to survive in the wild so that they can avoid predators. They wouldn't need these adaptions if they lived in a zoo because there isn't any predators in the enclosure they would be in that would attack or eat them so there is no use for these particular adaptions.

Impact Of Human Activity and Why Is the Eastern Bongo Endangered?

Species of Bongos such as the Eastern Bongo's numbers have been decreasing dramatically. The reasons largely at fault are hunting, introduced diseases and habitat loss. Human impact is shown by its beautifully striped hide hunted by African Hunters in their homeland to be used for clothing or to be sold. This has caused a drop in numbers of the species as they were hunted continuously and ruthlessly. They were once common in forest areas of Kenya and Uganda, and now completely extinct from Uganda. Only small populations remain in Kenya.
Big image

Steps Taken to Ensure the Future of Eastern Bongos

Conversations around the world put in their efforts to ensure the safety of Eastern Bongos. They have designated protected forest areas in Kenya and breeding programs to help the number of the species grow. There has been success so far with the breeding of Eastern Bongos in Zoos, with many calves born in 2012 in both Taronga and Melbourne Zoo. International attempts at breeding programs in other countries have been established and if successful, will be released back into the wild to help their declining population.

Bibliography

Victoria State Government, 2013, Melbourne Zoo, http://www.zoo.org.au/melbourne/animals/eastern-bongo, (18/11/15)


Atlanta Work Center, 2014, Zoo Atlanta, http://www.zooatlanta.org/bongo, (18/11/15)


OpenCrypt Membership Software, 2008, A-Z Animals, http://a-z-animals.com/animals/bongo/, (19/11/15)


Yolanda Gutierrez, n.d, WhoZoo, http://whozoo.org/anlife2000/yolandapankaj/bongo_index_3.htm, (19/11/15)


Act For Wildlife, n.d, Chester Zoo, http://www.chesterzoo.org/animals/mammals/hoofed-animals/eastern-bongo, (20/11/15)