May 21 marks the National Endangered Species Day 2021. Taking into account the growing need to protect endangered species across the world, this noble initiative was introduced in 2006. Various strict steps are being taken to safeguard these endangered species and restore the ecological balance. In an attempt to conserve wildlife, various communities engage in spreading awareness about the risks of extinction and evaluation of the quality of the existing ecosystem for the animals to thrive.
The National Endangered Species Act emphasizes conservation efforts to preserve the natural habitat of the animals. There are so many varieties of species that are facing the threat of extinction; while some are critically endangered and others have already been extinct.
Let’s look at some of the endangered animal species in India on this National Endangered Species Day:
Bengal Tiger: India’s national animal is tiger and the Royal Bengal Tiger is one of its rare species which currently features under the endangered species segment. It is one of the biggest wild cats that looks majestic with its 10 feet long physique, weighing 550 pounds. Mostly found in Sundarbans National Park, also can be spotted in the Ranthambore National Park, Jim Corbett National Park, Bandhavgarh National Park.
Red Panda: A furry reddish-brown, arboreal mammal, native to the eastern Himalayas, red panda is yet another species that is declining fast owing to poaching and loss of habitat.
Nilgiri Tahr: An endangered mountain goat species, Nilgiri Tahr is the Tamil Nadu state animal. It can be spotted in Eravikulam National Park, Nilgiri Hills, Anaimalai Hills, Periyar National Park, Palni Hills. The total number of Nilgiri Tahrs have decreased to 2500 in India.
One-horned rhinoceros: Hunted for its horns’ medicinal properties, this species of one-horned rhinoceros has shown significant dip over the past few years. These endangered Indian species can be mostly spotted in Kaziranga National Park, Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary; besides the foothills of Himalayas in India and Nepal.
Snow leopard: To protect the snow leopard, the government of India has launched the first National Protocol on Snow Leopard Population Assessment. There are around 500 snow leopards found all over the world.
Asiatic lion: Another endangered species with steady decline in population would be this Asiatic lion. Only 650 of these lions are left and can be found in Gir National Park, India.
Black buck: Also known as the Indian antelope is an endangered species in India.