An endangered species is defined by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service as "an animal or plant species in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range." In the United States, these animals can be listed under and protected by the Endangered Species Act. Endangered Species in the United States include the black-footed ferret and the California red-legged frog. The International Union for Conservation of Nature also keeps a Red List of Threatened Species, the most widely recognized list of endangered and threatened species. On this list, for example, are all the surviving subspecies of tiger, which range from endangered to critically endangered.
History is peppered with times when our patchy knowledge of natural systems has led to questionable interventions with unintended — and sometimes disastrous — consequences.
Every austral summer, Rangiroa and Tikehau atolls in French Polynesia host a mysterious assembly of female great hammerhead sharks — a critically endangered and typically solitary species.
Previous reported interactions between orcas and sailboats followed a clear pattern, with the animals losing interest and swimming away once they had broken the rudder.
The known population of the Yangtze giant softshell turtle is now just two males. Experts said that if the female had survived, she could have "laid a hundred eggs or more a year."
Tigers are the biggest cats in the world, but their populations are struggling. With only 3,200 left in the wild, there are now more living in captivity than in the wild.
Scientists identified shark DNA in pet food products, none of which listed shark meat in the ingredients.
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