Nearly a quarter of wild mammal species are in danger of extinction
Some 21 percent of the world’s 5,487 known wild mammal species are in danger of extinction, according to the updated Red List maintained by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. (Steller sea lions and tigers and giant pandas, oh no!) “Our results paint a bleak picture of the global status of mammals worldwide,” say researchers, noting that the tally could be as high as 36 percent due to insufficient data. More than 1,700 scientists in 130 countries participated in the five-year survey of mammal well-being, to be published in Science. Land mammals are mostly threatened by habitat loss and hunting; marine mammals too often end up as bycatch, are struck by ships, or perish due to water pollution. Primates face perhaps the highest threat: in South and Southeast Asia, a full 79 percent of monkeys and apes face possible extinction. Looks like the green movement needs more monkeyhuggers, stat.