DEC 20, 2016 8:47 AM PST

Are Giraffes Under the Threat of Extinction?

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

As time goes on, more and more beautiful animals around the world appear to be disappearing, and now you can add giraffes to that list. These long-necked creatures are on the decline and are now being recognized as vulnerable.

The IUCN now says that the giraffe has seen a 40% population decline over the last 30 years.

Image Credit: IUCN/Alicia Wirz

According to a report this month from the International Union for the Conversation of Nature (IUCN), giraffe populations are down as much as 40% over the past three decades. These declines can be attributed to various factors, including habitat loss and illegal hunting, among other things.

Specifically, the report notes the species’ numbers may have dropped anywhere from 151,702-163,452 in 1985 to just 97,562 in 2015.

“Whilst giraffe are commonly seen on safari, in the media and in zoos, people – including conservationists – are unaware that these majestic animals are undergoing a silent extinction,” said Julian Fennessy, co-chair of the IUCN SSC Giraffe and Okapi Specialist Group.

“With a decline of almost 40% in the last three decades alone, the world's tallest animal is under severe pressure in some of its core ranges across East, Central and West Africa. As one of the world's most iconic animals, it is timely that we stick our neck out for the giraffe before it is too late.”

Habitat loss and illegal hunting are some of the primary reasons behind the losses of many of the world’s great animals, including elephants and several large cats, so this hardly comes as much of a surprise.

There is a total of nine different giraffe species in the world, and while five of them are on the decline, one is fortunately stable while the other three are actually on the rise. Nevertheless, that’s still a decline for more than half of the species of giraffe in total, which looks pretty grim.

It’s not too late to do something about it, as being coined “vulnerable” doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world for giraffes. If we can help put an end to the unnecessary killing of the creatures, it could help preserve their numbers, or better, help them rebound.

Source: IUCN (1), (2)

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
AUG 15, 2021
Neuroscience
Cats Prefer Free Food Over Food that Requires Effort
AUG 15, 2021
Cats Prefer Free Food Over Food that Requires Effort
If given a choice between a free meal and working for their food, domestic cats prefer the effort-free option. The study ...
AUG 23, 2021
Plants & Animals
What Do Infants and Some Bats Have in Common? Baby Talk
AUG 23, 2021
What Do Infants and Some Bats Have in Common? Baby Talk
Saccopteryx bilineata is known as a communicative member of the sac-winged bat family. These animals use elaborate vocal ...
OCT 07, 2021
Plants & Animals
Saving the Georgia Peach from Climate Change
OCT 07, 2021
Saving the Georgia Peach from Climate Change
On average, Georgia, the Peach State, produces an estimated 130 million pounds of peaches each year--that’s a lot ...
OCT 20, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Building Better Crops: Pumpkin and Squash
OCT 20, 2021
Building Better Crops: Pumpkin and Squash
It’s the time of year for all things pumpkin. But what do you really know about pumpkins? They are generally consi ...
OCT 21, 2021
Cell & Molecular Biology
In a First, a Working Pig Kidney was Tested in a Person
OCT 21, 2021
In a First, a Working Pig Kidney was Tested in a Person
There are many people out there waiting on transplant lists for organs to become available. Sadly, many of those people ...
OCT 21, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Over 99%: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change Confirmed, Again
OCT 21, 2021
Over 99%: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change Confirmed, Again
The scientific consensus on human-caused climate change is overwhelming. A recent study published this week in Envi ...
Loading Comments...