Tawnya has a master's degree in early childhood education and teaches all subjects at an elementary school.
Endangered Animals in Canada
Do you think it's important to help plants and animals?
In Canada, certain species need help. More than 400 animal species and 200 plant species have been placed 'at risk' in Canada. This means these species could become extinct, or not exist anymore.
Before species can be helped, their risks need to be identified. The Canadian government passed the Species at Risk Act, which allows for scientific experts to identify the various levels species reach before extinction.
Take a look:
- Extinct - no longer exists
- Extirpated - no longer living in Canada, but could be somewhere else
- Endangered - at risk of becoming extirpated or extinct
- Threatened - at risk of becoming endangered
- Special Concern - at risk of becoming threatened
The chart shows some endangered species.
Take a look at some other species that are endangered in Canada:
- Whooping Crane
- Harlequin Duck
- Spotted Owl
- Piping Plover
- Peary Caribou
- Eastern Cougar
- Blue Racer Snake
- Lake Erie Water Snake
- Salish Sucker
- Aurora Trout
There is an extensive list of plant species that are endangered. Here are just a few:
- Eastern Prickly Pear Cactus
- Southern Maidenhair Fern
- Western Fringed Prairie Orchid
- Wood Poppy
Why Animals Are Endangered
You might be wondering, why this is happening to species in Canada. There are numerous factors or causes that put plant and animal species at risk of becoming extinct. Although some causes are natural and can't be controlled, humans and their actions play a major role in endangered species.
Take a look at the image to see specific factors.
Let's take a look at what's happening to three specific animals:
Sea otters used to be hunted for their pelts, or fur-covered skin. Hunters would sell the pelts for money. The sea otter was close to extinction until it was protected. Now, they are on the comeback!
Chemical pesticides were used by farmers to keep insects off their crops. These chemicals caused the egg shells of the peregrine falcon to lose calcium, the same thing our bodies need for strong bones. The shells became so brittle that, before hatching, they broke when the falcon sat on them. The pesticides that caused this to happen can no longer be made or used, and now the population of falcons is increasing.
Acadian or Atlantic Whitefish
This species of fish used to be found in certain rivers in Nova Scotia, Canada. However, a dam was built on one of the rivers, and it blocked the fish from swimming up the river, where they usually go to lay their eggs. Without the fish eggs hatching, the whitefish population has been affected. Acid rain has also affected the freshwater, causing trouble for the whitefish.
How to Help
Thankfully many people are aware of what's happening to endangered species and want to help.
Take a look at the chart to view specific organizations helping out.
Canada is also in agreement with other countries in ensuring that endangered species can't be traded or used in making products.
Ordinary people can help too! You and other individuals can help by being mindful of the effects actions have on plants and animals.
Species are threatened by natural and human causes in Canada and around the world. Certain events and actions put plants and animals at risk of becoming Extinct. Endangered and extirpated species need to be protected before they become nonexistent.
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