(Mirror Daily, United States) – Human ignorance and excess have severely affected our world, especially over the past century, as whale sharks and many other animal species are on the verge of extinction.
According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), winghead sharks and whale sharks are classified from ‘vulnerable’ to ‘endangered’ on the Red List, whereas Bornean orangutans switched from ‘endangered’ to ‘critically endangered,’ which means they are very close to becoming extinct.
The IUCN Red List is the most important evaluation of the conservation status of biological species throughout the world.
According to Jane Smart, IUCN’s Global Species Programme Director, these statistics prove how critical the situation is and how much these animals need our help. Our planet’s biodiversity is constantly threatened, so scientists need to come up with a more efficient strategy to save these species.
Also, the public, governments, and many of the world’s organizations need to become aware of the fact that every single one of these species is part of our planet’s treasure, so it is our duty to preserve and protect them.
Whale sharks, known as Rhincodon typu, are the largest fish in the world, and they are very gentle ocean creatures as scientists have often been observed swimming next to these giants.
These sharks have suffered more than a 50 percent decline over the past 75 years because of human ignorance, pollution, climate change, and many other factors caused by human excess.
Regardless of the fact that India and Philippines have doubled their efforts during the last couple of years to preserve this species and to stop the whale shark trade, these gentle giants are still the victims of tuna fishers.
Ship propellers are also responsible for killing whale sharks, whereas winghead sharks, known as Eusphyra blochii, are often found entangled in fishing nets because of their unusual shape. Winghead sharks are part of the hammerhead shark subspecies.
Besides these two species of sharks, Bornean orangutans, known as Pongo pygmaeus, have a suffered a massive decline in their population due to habitat loss caused by deforestation.
In other words, their forests are turned into paper plantations, oil palm, and rubber. According to the World Wildlife Fund for Nature, illegal pet trade is also a primary threat to the orangutans’ population. Based on the IUCN data, Bornean orangutans dropped down from 288,500 specimens to only 100,000 since 1970.
Scientists evaluate that their numbers will further decrease to 47,000 in the next nine years if active measures are not taken immediately. Whale sharks will also become even more endangered if no one takes the initiative.
Image Source:Sheraton Djibouti