5 Rarest Animals in the World
1. Pinta Island Tortoise
With only one survivor left, named Lonesome George, the Pinta Island Tortoise is considered to be the rarest animal on earth. The tortoise was thought to be exti nct 30 years ago until a ranger found Lonesome George on Galapagos Island. Scientists from Charles Darwin Research Station are trying very hard to find a female Pinta Island Tortoise so that the species can still be restored.
Also known as river dolphin, Baijis once swarmed the waters of China. Chinese believed them to incarnation of a drowned princess and were called the Giant Panda of Yang Tze River. The cause of the sudden decrease of the species’ population is mainly due to irresponsible fishing such as electrocution from electrical fishing, collision with ships and vessels, underwater blasting, and of course, excessive hunting for the animal’s meat and organs as it used in traditional Chinese medicine. In 2006, authorities estimated the population of Baijis from “less than a dozen” to “very likely less than a hundred.”
3. Vancouver Island Marmot
A marmot endemic to Vancouver Island, they are usually found in the alpine areas and open meadows. Even in the past, the Vancouver Island Marmot were never that many in numbers. In 2000, researchers estimated a number of only 75 marmots existing and it kept on decreasing until it reached the number of 30 individual marmots in 2005.
4. Seychelles Sheath-tailed Bat
Found in Madagascar, these bats are insectivore and live on crevices and bamboo trees. In 2004, it is reported that there are only less than 100 of the species left in Madagascar.
5. Javan Rhino
With only less than 50 left, the Javan Rhinoceros’ number is continually decreasing due to excessive poaching due to the belief on the medicinal properties of its horn. Found only in Vietnam and Indonesia, researchers are doing their best to save the species.
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