Extinct, Critically Endangered, and Back from the Brink

Extinct Species: Sea Mink

Neovison macrodon

  • This species was hunted to extinction in the fur trade around 1894
  • Formerly occurred along the coasts of Canada (New Brunswick, Newfoundland) and in coastal eastern North America (Massachusetts, Maine) The sea mink reportedly made its home among the rocks along the ocean. The diet consisted mainly of fish and probably also included mollusks. Terrestrial and marine systems.
  • Higher population of fish and mollusks

Critically Endangered: Black Rhino

Diceros bicornis

  • Relentless hunting of the species and clearances of land for settlement and agriculture reduced numbers, large-scale poaching caused a dramatic 98% collapse in numbers
  • Black Rhino occur in a wide variety of habitats from desert areas in Namibia to wetter forested areas. The highest densities of rhinos are found in savannas on nutrient-rich soils and in succulent valley bushveld areas. Black Rhino are browsers and favor small Acacia's and other palatable woody species as well as palatable herbs and succulents. Black Rhino carrying capacity is related to rainfall, soil nutrient status, fire histories, levels of grass interference, extent of frost and densities of other large browsers.
  • Increase in woody species

Back from the Brink - Improved by Conservation: Grey Wolf

Canis lupus

  • Their original worldwide range has been reduced by about one-third by poisoning and deliberate persecution due to depredation on livestock, continued threats include competition with humans for livestock and fragmentation of habitat
  • Wolves occur primarily in wilderness and remote areas, especially in Canada, Alaska and northern USA, Europe, and Asia. Food is extremely variable, but the majority comprises of moose, caribou, deer, elk, wild boar, etc. wolves will also eat smaller prey items, livestock, carrion, and garbage. Terrestrial system
  • Increased population of moose, caribou, deer, elk, wild boar, etc.

Natural Area of Biological Significance: The Tropical Andes

  • The Tropical Andes are a chain of mountains stretching down the west coast of South America from Bolivia to Chile. It is home to one-sixth of all plant life on Earth on just one percent of the planet's landmass. More than 660 amphibian species call the tropical Andes home; in 2004, 450 of those were listed as threatened by the IUCN
  • Climate change can cause long term impact on shrinking glaciers, the Central Andes Mountains contain more than 99% of the worlds glaciers. Invasive species like the American bullfrog and grasses for cattle grazing are becoming problems as well
  • The Tropical Andes are rich in resources, oil and gas have been discovered in the region and companies are building roads and pipelines through sensitive areas. Hydroelectric dams threaten river ecosystems and deforestation caused by agriculture, particularly coffee plantations, leaves native birds without a habitat
  • Conservation groups are working with local farmers to promote shade-grown coffee and end clear-cutting. Other conservation efforts in the region include projects to mitigate the direct effects of large-scale infrastructure development and resource extraction, programs for the conservation and rehabilitation of specific species such as the Andean condor and the yellow-eared parrot, public awareness and participation, and the development of already degraded areas for agricultural production, rather than clearing standing forests

Works Cited

Chevallier, Pierre. "Climate Change Threats to Environment in the Tropical Andes: Glaciers

and Water Resources." 14 Nov. 2010. Web. 18 Feb. 2016.


Pappas, Stephanie. "8 of the World's Most Endangered Places." LiveScience. TechMedia

Network, 01 July 2010. Web. 18 Feb. 2016. <http://www.livescience.com/29569-8-of-the-


The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Web. 18 Feb. 2016. <http://www.iucnredlist.org/>.

"Tropical Andes." CEPF.net. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Feb. 2016.