Researchers are concerned once more about how man affects the natural world. This time, it is the Eastern gorilla the one that has to pay the price of humans’ reckless actions. Due to poaching and illegal hunting, the world’s largest primate faces the risk of extinction.
The International Union announced the sad news. Reports from scientists show that there are less than forty thousand Eastern gorillas in the wild. The last twenty years have been critical for the animals. Their population severely dropped by seventy percent, according to official information.
Before the beginning of the century, there were approximately seventeen thousand gorillas living free in the wild.
There are two subspecies of Eastern gorilla, namely the mountain gorilla and the lowland gorilla. Today, both of them are considered to be endangered animals. As such, they require protection. However, the mountain gorillas seem to be more stable, as researchers observed that their number has slowly increased to nearly nine hundred individuals. However, this is far from being good news.
Apart from mountain and lowland gorillas, other two species are considered to be critically endangered, namely the Sumatran orangutan and the Bornean orangutan. In addition to this, chimpanzees and bonobos don’t have a good situation, either.
Except illegal hunting, habitat loss is also one of the factors which contribute to the rapid extinction of the animals. Damaging the natural environment of animals is also a work of man. Civil unrest in the area also facilitates firing, thus killing the animals.
Most Eastern gorillas live in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They are herbivores and diurnal animals. They live in groups led by a strong male individual.
More and more animals, insects and birds seem to be added to the endangered animals’ list these days. The Plains Zebra is one of the threatened species, with a twenty-four percent decline in the numbers of the population during the last fourteen years. Koala bears and African antelopes are in the same situation. Even some of the rare, exotic Hawaiian plants face extinction.
Researchers are also concerned about both savanna and forest African elephants. They have been registering low birth rates and high death rates caused by poaching.
The only good news coming from the animal kingdom is that researchers were able to save China’s giant panda bear. The iconic black and white animal is no longer considered to be endangered.
Image courtesy of: Wikipedia