We live in a vast, complex world, where new species are being discovered all the time. Yet even as these exciting creatures are being discovered, the increasing human population, climate change, habitat destruction, hunting and the over-exploitation of wildlife mean countless numbers of animals are currently being pushed to the edge of extinction.
Scientists have estimated that over the course of Earth’s history, anywhere between 1 and 4 billion species have existed.
The natural extinction rate (aka background rate) describes how fast plants, mammals, birds and insects would die off if humans weren’t in the picture. It is estimated that today species are disappearing at almost 1,000 times the natural rate, meaning we’re losing around 150-200 species every single day.
Choosing animals that are likely to go extinct before your children have the opportunity to see them was a daunting task.
By only picking 10, we had to leave out countless other animals that are facing similar depressing circumstances. But millions of other species, many never known to science, are also likely to perish in the coming decades.