The title tell us this: we are discovering for the first time ever new species of plants and animals but at the same time we’ve decided that these new species (to humans) are going extinct because of human behavior. It is a bit sick that.
There must be species on the planet that we have never seen and never will see because they’ll be extinct before we find them. And this confirms what we know: human population growth and associated activities – new settlements and business activity – are destroying the habitats of our wildlife.
And we can’t stop it. Although the experts do say that world human population will peak at 10.86 billion in 2086! How do they figure that out? Perhaps it will have to peak and fall back as we won’t have enough food to feed ourselves.
The Times, today, states that many of the 380 species recently discovered in one of Asia’s biodiversity hotspots are already facing extinction. In the Greater Mekong region, a total of 290 plant species, 24 amphibians, 20 fish species, 46 reptiles and one mammal had been discovered. The region covers parts of Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam. They discovered these new species over the past two years.
For example, they include a colour-changing lizard, a poisonous snake, a thick-thumbed bat and a tree frog with skin that looks like moss.
Sadly, conservationists say that many of them are already under threat of extinction because of habitat loss (the usual cause) which includes deforestation and the illegal wildlife trade (which is another classic reason for species going extinct). The widespread trade in wild animals and their body parts has not diminished despite a worldwide treaty to stop it! A failure. I am referring to CITES – Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. It has been in place since 1973. I hate to be negative but it does not work because of a lack of commitment combined with a lack of enforcement.
The report was published by the World Wide Fund for Nature. They are calling on governments to increase protection of rare species and to halt the decline in nature.
Wildlife crossings: beauty, functionality and conservation in one