7 Lesser-Known Wild Animals in Need of Conservation

Many animal species need conservation help. While you may have heard of tigers, polar bears, and pandas, here are some species that you may not have heard of before.

Mar 16, 2023byKatie Omeara

Many people hear the calls for help about tigers, polar bears, rhinos, and other species that are often the front page of conservation matters. While all species are important to protect and conserve for our planet, we cannot forget about the lesser-known animals that are quietly disappearing from our planet. In the last 500 years, more than 800 animals have gone extinct or extinct in the wild, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources Red List. In this article, we will introduce you to 7 animal species that you may have never heard of, that are also in need of some conservation help.

7. Tree Kangaroo

tree kangaroo
Credit: San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance

The Tree Kangaroo has 14 species under this classification, and many are critically endangered. The Tree Kangaroo is found in lowland and mountainous rainforests in Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and in the far north of Queensland, Australia. These cuddly-looking species live up in the foliage and look like a cross between a kangaroo and a lemur.

It is critical that we assist these animals as habitat loss caused by deforestation and poaching are pushing them to the brink of extinction. The number of Matschie’s Tree Kangaroos in their native habitat is estimated at fewer than 2,500 and declining. Their population is threatened by human hunting for food and trade, as well as habitat loss caused by expanding agriculture.

6. Ethiopian Wolf

ethiopian wolf
Photo by Martin Harvey

While the well-known Gray Wolf has made conservation headlines over the years, their cousin, the Ethiopian Wolf has been relatively glanced over. The Ethiopian Wolf is the world’s most endangered canid and Africa’s most endangered carnivore, having an estimated population of fewer than 450 individuals, only found in Ethiopia’s highlands.

At present time, humans are this species’ biggest threat, as they are being more confined to higher and higher altitudes as subsistence farming in Ethiopia’s highlands encroaches on huge portions of their territory. This loss of habitat is only being made worse by animal overgrazing.

5. Gee’s Golden Langur

golden langur
Photo by Dilip Chetry

Gee’s Golden Langurs are be found in a tiny area of western Assam, India, and in the nearby foothills of the Black Mountains, Bhutan. These monkeys are native to humid tropical woods. Gee’s Golden Langurs have a worldwide population size of less than 5,500 individuals. They are most under risk from habitat degradation because of unlawful encroachment and woodcutting.

Other problems that these monkeys face include the removal of non-woody vegetation, selective logging, human settlements, deforestation, fragmentation, trade, domestic dogs, and local trade as pets and in road shows.

4. Mediterranean Monk Seals

mediterranean monk seals
Credit: Shutterstock

One of the two remaining Monk Seal species is the Mediterranean Monk Seal. Due to centuries of exploitation, persecution, and harassment, the Mediterranean species is now the world’s most endangered pinniped species. Only a few dispersed, fragmented populations, which together only cover a small fraction of the species’ original habitat, are left.

There are just 510 Mediterranean Monk Seals left in existence. Monk Seals may grow from a newborn length of about 80 cm to an average length of 2.4 meters.

3. Philippine Eagle

philippine eagle
Credit: The Philippine Eagle Foundation

The Philippine Eagle, commonly referred to as the monkey-eating eagle, is the Philippines’ national bird. One of the rarest birds in the world, there are only around 500 of these birds remaining in existence. They are on the edge of going extinct.

Deforestation is the main factor contributing to their endangered status. The Philippine eagle is a key species in maintaining the delicate balance of the environment since it is at the top of the food chain. A healthy forest is indicated by a large population of Philippine Eagles.

2. African Wild Dog

african wild dog
Credit: African Wildlife Foundation

African Wild Dogs are a distinctive canid that are primarily threatened by illness, habitat fragmentation, and conflicts with human activity. African Wild Dogs are undoubtedly the second most endangered carnivore in Africa, after the Ethiopian Wolf.

There are less than 550 wandering the wild areas of South Africa, and there are just 39 different subpopulations surviving in all of Africa. Large territories are necessary for African Wild Dog populations to be genetically varied and self-sustaining.

1. Andean Cat

andean cat
Credit: Cristian Sepúlveda, AGA

In addition to the usual threats of habitat loss and degradation due to human activities and expansion, the fragile mountain region with its wildlife will also be affected by global climate change. According to scientists, there are less than 1,400 of these cats left in the world.

What you Can do to Help

conservation rhino
Credit: World Wildlife Fund

While these are only 7 out of hundreds of threatened species you may have never heard of, there are many things you can do to help all sorts of wildlife. Reducing your intake of factory-farmed meat and wild-caught seafood will help rescue endangered animals by lowering the demand for items derived from animal trafficking or poaching.

You may support organizations that seek to conserve endangered animals in addition to limiting your use of these goods. You can choose to support the groups that share your ideals because there are many of them that concentrate on specific species or environments.

Katie Omeara
byKatie Omeara

Katie is an animal lover with five years of experience in the pet industry. She studied biology with a focus on conservation and animal behavior in college. She lives at home with six beloved dogs, a cat, and a bird. For fun, she loves hiking with her border collie, Lexie, birdwatching, and shopping.