Species we lost in 2017 and the ones that managed to hold on

  • According to the updated IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) red list, here are the species that were marked as “EXTINCT”.
  • Christmas Island Pipistrelle : This small bat found exclusively on Christmas Island, Australia was listed as critically endangered last year. Predation, loss of habitat, and diseases were pointed out as causes for its extinction.
  • Christmas Island Whiptail-skink : Another species endemic to Christmas Island, this lizard went extinct this year. Non-native predators and insecticide poisoning drove it over the edge.
  • Christmas Island chained gekho : The species is listed as extinct in the wild, which means it is now found only in a captive breeding programme.
  • Gunthers Dwarf Burrowing skink : Though no record of the skink has been made for more than 125 years, this native of South Africa was officially confirmed to be extinct only this year.
  • Here are the species that are under a high risk of extinction in the near future. According to the updated list, they are placed under the “critically endangered”category.
  • Western Ringtail Possum: The number for this species has declined by almost 80 per cent in the past 10 years. Australia’s increasingly dry and hot climate has led to its dramatic decline.
  • Yellow-breasted Bunting: Loss of roosting site and use of pesticides are major causes of their its decline.
  • Plains Wanderer : Exposure to pesticides, habitat loss, predation by foxes have all affected the survival of this small quail-like bird
  • Green Poison Frog, Perret’s Toad, and Rose’s Mountain Toad are also listed as critically endangered.
  • Thanks to conservation efforts and captive breeding, a few species have recovered and moved from endangered to “vulnerable”
  • Snow Leopard: Setting up of protected areas, anti-poaching measures, vaccination have helped save the mountain species of Asia.
  • North Brown Kiwi & Okarito Kiwi: Conservation efforts by the Australian Government and captive breeding has aided the change in their status.
  • Aberdare cisticola : Their status of this Kenyan warbler bird was changed after re-assessment in its habitat
  • Ouvea Parakeet: Native to Ouvea Island of France, conservation efforts by local population has helped increase its population.

A Happy Tortoise Story:

  • The C. duncanensis which was termed ‘extinct in the wild’ last year has recovered fully-thanks to conservationists.
  • A native to the Pinzon Island in Equador, it faced constant trouble from non-native rats who feed on its eggs.
  • In order to save these endemic species of the island, conservationists started captive breeding programme and a rat eradication programme which proved a huge success and now the tortoise is down listed as vulnerable.


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