Venezuela is one of the 17 countries with the greatest biodiversity in the world. However, as in other countries, in Venezuela there are also animals that are currently in danger of extinction. Among the factors that limit the survival of the species, we find deforestation, fishing, hunting or the destruction and alteration of habitats.
In this Green Ecologist article, we quote 22 animals in danger of extinction in Venezuela recognized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Venezuela is an ideal habitat for the manatee, however the hunting of this species has seriously endangered the manatee populations in the country. According to the IUCN in 2008, manatee populations were down to 2,500 mature specimens, but due to their status as a species, there are few studies about their locations.
Through various land expeditions, it has been possible to verify the presence of manatees in Lake Maracaibo, the Orinoco Delta and the Gulf of Paria. Currently, there are projects for the protection of West Indian manatees in Venezuela and other areas.
The giant otter is considered by the IUCN in danger of extinction in Venezuela since 2015. Globally, the giant otter population is low and its individual sub-populations are small and fragmented.
This species is also intrinsically vulnerable to extinction because only between a third and a quarter of its total population reproduce, their survival is short, they reach a late maturity and, therefore, a late age of reproduction.
Individuals inhabit many rivers, streams, and lakes in the tropical forests of South America. In Venezuela, specifically, they are found in the Monagas River, Amazonas, Amaruco Delta, Apure, Bolívar and Barinas.
This species of bird has been considered in danger of extinction in Venezuela by the IUCN since 2016, mainly as a result of its capture for trade and the reduction of its habitat being used for agriculture. Its population is estimated at 700 to 5,000 specimens and it is one of Venezuela's most endangered birds. Nowadays, the cardinal It is one of the highest conservation priority birds in the country.
Specifically, this bird can be found in places of Falcón, Anzoátegui, Zulia, Guárico, Miranda, Lara or Barinas.
This species inhabits grassland burrows or open areas of the forest, generally in primary forests close to water. The giant armadillo It is greatly affected by the loss of its habitat and factors such as hunting for meat consumption, use of the shell, tail and claws for the manufacture of certain products, sold as a pet or as a stuffed animal on the black market.
In Venezuela, it can be found in the Andean Cordillera, on the coast and south of the Orinoco River.
It is a small parrot that lives in the cloud and rainy forests of the Andes of Táchira and Mérida, feeding on fruit, flowers and seeds. Currently, it is one of animals in danger of extinction in Venezuela and it is that their greatest threats are hunting for sale as pets and the deforestation of forests.
Specifically, scientists consider it to be multicolored parakeet an animal species in danger of extinction since 2016.Image: Icesi.edu.co
Giant anteaters o Myrmecophaga tridactyla They are solitary animals that inhabit humid tropical forests, Savannah habitats, dry forests, and open grasslands. The giant anteater in danger of extinction in Venezuela since 2014 due to factors such as the particularity of its diet, its large size and the destruction of its habitat. These animals can mainly be found in the north and northeast of Lake Maracaibo, Bolívar or Amazonas.
Between fauna of Venezuela we also find monkeys, such as the well-known spider monkeys. These animals live by balancing on branches, instead of running and walking on their legs. They feed on fruits in the upper levels of the trees and their habitat is associated with clay soils and firm lands. The threat to spider monkeys it is mainly found in the destruction of mountain forests in which they live.
This is one of the endangered animals in Venezuela that can be found in the north of the country towards the Orinoco and Caura River and in humid forests of the Maracaibo Lake basin. In the main image of this article we can see a spider monkey.
In this other post we tell you more about Is the spider monkey in danger of extinction?
This bear is endemic to the tropical Andes and can be found in the Sierra de Perijá, the Macizo de El Tamá and the Cordillera de Mérida. The main threats to Andean bear or Tremarctos ornatus they are the destruction and fragmentation of the habitat and the mining and oil exploitation.
This species of bear, along with some others on this list, is also considered an endangered species in other countries, such as Peru. You can consult this other list of 8 animals in danger of extinction in Peru. To learn more about their situation, we recommend this other post on Why the spectacled bear is in danger of extinction.
These whales are the second largest mammals, after the blue whales, and they are in danger of extinction in Venezuela, but also in the waters of other countries. The main threats to fin whale they are indiscriminate hunting and human interruption of their sound waves, which we do with ships, radios used on the high seas, and so on.
Sightings have been recorded on the Isla de Margarita, Sucre, Falcón and the Mochima National Park.
These ducks inhabit the most powerful and fastest rivers in the Andes, surrounded by steep and rigid mountain slopes, building nests in inaccessible places. The main threats of torrent ducks or Merganetta armata they are the destruction of Andean habitats and intensive hunting.
They can be found in Mérida and Táchira, where their populations range from 100 to 1,500 specimens.
We continue with this list of endangered Venezuelan animals in which you will find the common names, the scientists and a photo of each species.
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