“We have an urgent window of opportunity in which to step up and pull back some of the world’s most splendid animals from the brink of extinction,” says Dr. Sybille Klenzendorf, WWF’s Managing Director of Species Conservation.
The world’s leading conservation organization, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has been working for over 45 years to help protect nature. At the end of last year they released their annual list, Ten to Watch in 2010, of some of the most threatened species around the world, saying that the long-term survival of many animals is increasingly in doubt due to a host of threats and calling for a step up in efforts to save some of the world’s most threatened animals.
WWF scientists say these, and many other species, are at greater risk than ever before because of habitat loss, poaching, and climate change-related threats. This year’s watch list includes five species directly impacted by climate change, as well as the monarch butterfly, the species at the center of an endangered biological phenomenon.
From the WWF website, here are the Ten to Watch in 2010:
An international symbol of conservation since WWF’s founding in 1961, the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) which numbers less than 2500 in the wild, faces an uncertain future. Its forest habitat in the mountainous areas of southwest China has become fragmented, creating small and isolated populations. WWF has been active in giant panda conservation for nearly three decades, conducting field studies, working to protect habitats and, most recently, by providing assistance to the Chinese government in establishing a program to protect the panda and its habitat through the creation of reserves.