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10 endangered animals that are being saved by Zoos

by Staff writer
28 Nov 2019 at 06:54hrs | Views
In zoos all around the world, endangered species are being eased back from the brink of extinction. As the wildlife of earth continues to struggle more than ever in the fight to survive, some species are making a comeback. That's because zoos are one of the leading sources of conservation work, and when animals face threats from human overpopulation, poaching, and pollution, they need all the help they can get.

The good news is that there are now many species of animal that have been brought back from the edge of extinction, and are now returning to their natural habitats and helping to restore ecological balance. These 10 amazing animals might not still be here if it were not for the good work being done by zoos of all sizes.

Siberian Tigers
This iconic and elegantly beautiful cat has seen some incredible fluctuations in terms of population figures. At one point in the 1940s, there were only around 40 of these magnificent cats left in the world. Now, thanks to the work of conservationists and a ban on tiger hunting, the world has seen those numbers rise to around 540 Siberian Tigers still alive today.

Arabian Oryx
Hunted to extinction in the wild, the Arabian Oryx could have been gone forever. The good news for us and for them is that there remained a handful of them still alive in zoos. Working together, zoos prioritized conservation and breeding programs, and now the Arabian Oryx has been brought back from the edge. There are now over 1,000 of the adorable antelopes running around in the wild and plenty more in the safe hands of zoos.

California Condor
Some animals come closer to extinction than others, and the California Condor has come closer than most. Although there are now hundreds of these Condors alive, there was a point where there were only 27 left. Due to the hard work of zoos looking after all 27, the California Condor is growing in population numbers.

Southern White Rhino
In the early 1900s, there were less than 50 southern white rhinos in existence; but, thanks to the efforts of the Government of South Africa and conservationists, this number has grown to roughly 18,000 today. Sadly, due to poaching, that figure has dropped over the last two years. Today, conservation teams at zoos across the country are helping to make sure that population numbers continue to rise. With the news of a baby rhino being born in the Gulf Breeze Zoo, this shows the result of the continuous work that is being done to ensure the positive population numbers.

Grey Wolf
Once thriving all across North America, Asia, and Europe, the Grey Wolf saw a huge drop in population at the turn of the last century. Over the course of the 20th Century, Americans almost hunted the grey wolf to extinction, but a steady return to their habitats has been encouraged by the work of zoos and environmental groups. Washington and Oregon have both seen Grey Wolf pups born in the last few years, and that work continues to increase their numbers.

Przewalski's Horse
This is the last real wild horse to be seen anywhere in the world. Originally from the grasslands that make up the majority of central Asia, this once thriving species has been to the edge of extinction several times and has even been prematurely announced as extinct. However, zoos have been working together to save Przewalski's Horse, and there is now a stable and sustainable population level, and the beautiful beast is slowly being reintroduced to the natural habitats where they belong.

Corroboree Frog
A small and seemingly minor fungal infection nearly wiped out this cute little black and yellow frog. The residents of just a tiny part of the world in a sub-alpine part of Australia, the Corroboree Frog was very close to being completely wiped out. Luckily, Australian zoos worked hard on breeding programs, and now the frog has been slowly returned, disease-free, to where they came from. Australian frogs have proven particularly vulnerable to the threat of extinction, but this species is not going to join their ranks anytime soon.

The Bald Eagle
There was a point where an estimated 500,000 Bald Eagles were flying around the U.S. By the 1950s, there were only 412 nesting pairs left. In 1967, the Bald Eagle made the Endangered Species list. That resulted in a countywide hunting ban, which has had amazing results. Thanks to that ban and the work of zoos all over the country to repopulate these amazing birds, numbers have risen to an estimated 70,000 bald eagles in the wild.

Sea Lions
If you've been to a zoo or aquarium lately, then you might be surprised to see sea lions on this list. A regular and common character to see, it can be hard to imagine that they were once so dangerously close to extinction. Hard work was needed to bring them back, and in 2013 they were finally removed from the Endangered Species list. Now, they continue to steadily grow in population numbers, which is why they are such a common sight to see in both zoos and aquariums around the world.

Eastern Bongo

This antelope is the resident of a very, very remote region in Kenya. The fact that it lives so remotely and is a famously reclusive animal should mean that it's no surprise that the Eastern Bongo was one of the final large mammal species that were ever discovered by humans. That elusive nature didn't save it from being hunted to near extinction, and their numbers are now shockingly low. The Eastern Bongo isn't rescued yet, but zoos are working hard to increase their numbers, and there are now more in zoos than there are in the wild.

Zoos have proven to be vital in the fight to protect and nurture the animals that are most under threat by humans and by an ever-changing world. As the planet starts looking more closely at sustainable living and being more in tune with the world around us, the fight to save endangered species goes on. With dedicated and passionate teams working hard in the zoos of the world, perhaps more endangered species can be brought back from the risk of extinction and we can find a way to live more in harmony with the planet that is home to us all.

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