List of threatened species still growing

May 02, 2006

A major Swiss conservation organization says an increasing number of species are being are threatened by extinction.

Among the species recently classified as threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources are the hippopotamus, polar bear, many sharks and European and African freshwater fish.

The IUCN's Red List of Threatened Species includes more than 16,000 as-risk species, the BBC reported Tuesday. The organization's director-general, Achim Steiner, said, "The 2006 Red List shows a clear trend; biodiversity loss is increasing, not slowing down."

IUCN, with headquarters in Gland, Switzerland, blames human activities for threatening 99 percent of all Red List species. Habitat loss and degradation coupled with climate change are said to affect more than 80 percent of listed birds, mammals and amphibians, the BBC said. Other negative human activity includes over-exploitation and pollution.

Overall, the latest list of 16,119 species is said to represent the most detailed regular survey of the health of the plant and animal kingdoms.

The BBC said the list includes 1-in-3 amphibians, a quarter of all coniferous trees and 1-in-4 mammals.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: 35,000 walrus come ashore in northwest Alaska

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

California's sea otter numbers holding steady

Sep 23, 2014

When a sea otter wants to rest, it wraps a piece of kelp around its body to hold itself steady among the rolling waves. Likewise, California's sea otter numbers are holding steady despite many forces pushing ...

New curbs on trade in threatened sharks

Sep 11, 2014

Seven threatened species of shark and ray are to get greater protection, as a historic agreement aimed at safeguarding the world's oldest predator takes effect, conservationists said Thursday.

Recommended for you

The remarkable simplicity of complexity

1 hour ago

From the fractal patterns of snowflakes to cellular lifeforms, our universe is full of complex phenomena – but how does this complexity arise?

User comments : 0