Blame it on commercial deforestation, rampant forest fires, or illegal poaching; Australia has become a land of endangered animals in recent times which have made endangered species conservation, Australia more important than ever.
Unfortunately, most of us are unaware of the severity of the term ‘endangered.’ So, let’s start by throwing some light on it. Endangered animals or species are those animals or species that are at the brink of extinction owing to a sharp decline in their population, precisely 50% to above 70% over the past ten years. A species can also be considered endangered if their current population rests at a mere 250 members or even fewer.
Let’s take a look at the few endangered species in Australia that need your help.
1.) Northern Hairy Nose Wombat
The furry Aussie marsupial with short yet powerful legs carries the prestigious titles of being the world’s most giant burrowing herbivore as well as one of the largest mammals on land. One of the biggest threats to the slow and clumsy wombats is predatory wild dogs, along with local catastrophe and loss of genetic diversity. The northern hairy nose wombats were thought to be extinct in the early 20th century, but a small population of the animals was found in the 1930s. Conservation efforts have brought a significant and positive change in the population of these shy animals, which were about 163 individuals in 2010 at Epping Forest National Park, which is still a very critical number.
Kangaroos’ miniature cousins, wombats, are widespread across the Australian mainland, Tasmania and Papua New Guinea. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species listed that the Black Forest Wallaby is Critically Endangered; the Proserpine Rock-wallaby is Endangered; the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby is near Threatened, and the mala (Rufous Hare Wallaby or Warrup) and Bridled Nail-tail Wallaby are Vulnerable to extinction. The five subspecies of Black-footed Rock-wallaby are variously listed as endangered, vulnerable or near threatened. Wild predators and other competitive herbivorous animals are major threats to these herbivorous macropods.
3.) Turtles in the Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef holds the title of the world’s largest coral reef system and its fantastical beauty brings hordes of tourists every year. Among the plethora of vivid underwater lives that thrive on this reef are the ultra-graceful variety turtles. There are six prominent species of turtles that glide on the waves of the Great Barrier Reef, namely, –
i. The Green Turtles are olive green-hued, smooth, high-doomed shell.
ii. The vulnerable Olive Ridley Turtles, the smallest of the lot, are infamous for their striking heart-shaped shell and cream underbelly.
iii. The Hawksbill Sea Turtle has a ‘beak-like’ mouth, which renders them with the name. The medium-sized turtle has beautiful patterns and spots in brown and black all over their body, except their underbelly, which is cream in colour.
iv. The massive Leatherback Sea Turtle is the largest of all sea turtles and is named so because of their inky-blue shell,
which has a leather-like texture instead of being a bony, hard shell.
v. The Australian Flatback Sea Turtles is named after its flat olive-grey carapace, which is very smooth, without ridges. It is also listed as a vulnerable species
vi. The Loggerhead Sea Turtle has a huge head and a beautiful reddish-brown shell with distinct ridges and a yellow underbelly.
Among these six, the leatherback, loggerhead and olive ridley turtle is listed as endangered under the EPBC Act, which means that these species may become extinct if threats to their survival continue.
One of the most vicious factors that threaten the life of animals is humans and their activities. Thus, it is time to pay back and join hands with the endangered species conservation Australia to restore whatever is left of Mother Earth.