The species being discussed today hails all the way from Australia! I originally was going to write about a different animal but then I saw a Facebook video this morning about an animal sanctuary that featured some endemic, endangered animals like the Tasmanian devil and realized the wombat would be cooler to talk about. There are three main types of wombats. The common wombat, the northern hairy-nosed wombat and the southern hairy-nosed wombat. The common wombat occupies coastal areas while the northern and southern wombats prefer much a much drier habitat so are found inland. Northern hairy-nosed wombats are the biggest of the three species weighing in at about 32 kg (70 lbs) while the southern hairy-nosed wombat weighs the least amount; 26 kg (57 lbs). They have a bit of a stocky build with large paws and claws that allow them to build burrows that they stay in most of the time. When they walk, their bodies kind of sway from side to side because of their bulk but they are quite fast; averaging about 40 km/hr (about 24 mph) over short distances.
Today’s endangered animal comes to you from southern Africa; specifically northern Botswana, western Zimbabwe, eastern Namibia and western Zambia. The species goes by many names: Painted Hunting dog, African wild dog or the Cape Hunting Dog.
The name Painted Hunting dog is derived from the splotchy markings on the dog’s coat. Each dog has its own unique markings that other pack members are able to identify. African wild dogs grow to be about 30 inches tall (which is a little over 2 feet), be about 30-56 inches long (2 feet-5 feet) and will weigh about 40 to 70 pounds as adults. Their preferred habitat is low grassy areas such as savannas, semi-desert areas or upland forests. African wild dogs are highly social individuals. Pack sizes can average about 10 to 40 or more individuals. Their primary prey are gazelles and antelopes such as the Impala, Greater Kudu and Thomson’s Gazelle. However, they have been known to take down larger prey such as wildebeest and African buffalo. If food is scarce, they’ll go for smaller prey such as hares, lizards and eggs but that’s a very small diet in comparison to what they normally eat. Painted hunting dogs can reach run speeds up to 45 mph.
Don’t freak out but snakes are important too! Today’s endangered species is one of the most endangered reptiles in the world; the Albany adder. The picture makes the snake look huge but most Albany adders are 12 inches or less in length. There is not too much about this species so this post is sadly, going to be a little short.
Today’s endangered animal has been discussed on RT in the past. In fact, it was one of the first 5 posts when this series was started. I would like to revisit the species today to shed some more detail on this unique creature dubbed “the panda of the sea” because I came across an article that just makes me so sad for it.
In the spirit of Halloween passed, today’s endangered animal is the Mexican long-nosed bat or Leptonycteris nivalis. For starters, not much is known about the range of this species. The Mexican long-nosed bat is reported to be seen in the states of Arizona, New Mexico and Texas as well as Mexico and Guatemala. The reason the range is not specifically known is because scientists have not been able to pinpoint the migratory pattern of the species. Population size of roosts can range from zero to 10,000 individuals in a single year but it is suspected that the overall general population of the species is definitely declining. Fun fact: When you think of a flying creature, it’s usually a bird however, bats are the only mammals that can fly.
Today’s endangered species is focused on the biggest flower in the world: Rafflesia magnifica aka the meat flower. Now before you say, “I could have sworn I saw this flower in a botanical gardens!”, I assure you, you’re wrong. This particular species is only found in one location in the world. That’s right, if you don’t already live in the Phillipines, you’d have to hop on a plane and fly to the Mt. Candalaga mountain range in Compostela Valley to see the few of these that are left. Although this species is only found in such a small area, all species of Rafflesia are listed as vulnerable or endangered in some form or another.
I planned to write about another animal today but I realized I never made an initial post outlining the IUCN categories that animals are placed in based off their population size. Today, I am going to share these categories with you so going forward you can understand the threat level animals, and sometimes plants I talk about, are facing.
Today’s endangered species is brought to you by the family Camelidae. Fun fact. Camels were once native to North America before the age of humans. Unfortunately, humans hunted a lot and they ended up going extinct. Now before you say, “But I see camels in the zoo all the time!”, I know you do. That would be because camels were reintroduced domestically to the continent. Now, there are two types of camels; the Camelus ferus (Bactrian or two humped camel) and C. dromedarius (Dromedary or one humped camel). Bactrian camel is the species we are focusing on today. It should be also noted that I am talking about the wild Bactrian camel as opposed to its domestic counterparts which are listed under Camelus bactriarus.
Today’s endangered species comes from the Reptilia class (no relation to the song by The Strokes). It’s in the genus, Crocodylus which includes alligators and caiman. The Cuban crocodile has a very small distribution. Over time it’s been limited to two small swamps of Cuba; the Zapata Swamp and the Lanier Swamp on the Isla de Juventad (Isle of Youth). Both of these swamps are freshwater swamps. The Cuban crocodile goes by “Crocodile De Cuba” in French and “Cocodrilo De Cuba” in Spanish.
Today’s endangered species is brought to you by a video I stumbled upon browsing my Twitter feed last night. There are two main types of sloths; two-toed and three-toed. Within those two types, there are six species of sloth: maned sloth, pale-throated sloth, brown-throated sloth, Linnaues’s two-toed sloth, Hoffman’s two-toed sloth and the pygmy three-toed sloth. Of the six species, 4 of the populations are doing well but the maned sloth is listed as vulnerable and the pygmy three-toed sloth is critically endangered.