Why Animals Become Extinct? | Extinct Animals and Causes

Animals or organisms are considered extinct when there are no more living organisms. Animals classified as “endangered” are at risk of extinction.

Some animals are considered extinct in the wild. This means that the only surviving members of the species live in captivity, like in zoos.

Animals disappear for many reasons. Today, many animal species are threatened or have disappeared due to human influence. Some of the ways animals disappear are provided below.

Natural Forces

Throughout history, many species have disappeared. It’s part of the natural process. Species that may become extinct due to climate change (i.e. Most natural extinctions are isolated events that occur over a fairly long period of time.

However, some are large events that can cause mass extinctions and happen quickly. Perhaps the most famous of these is the extinction of the dinosaurs, possibly caused by a large meteorite hitting the Earth.

Human Interaction

Today, many conservationists worry about human interactions causing the species’ extinction. Indeed, human interaction has accelerated extinction far beyond what normally occurs in nature. Multiple extinctions reduce the biodiversity of the planet and can have adverse effects on all life on Earth.


Many species have been hunted to extinction or to the point where they are critically endangered. The American bison is an example. There were millions of bison on the Great Plains of North America until the arrival of Europeans. The hunt was so fierce that only a few hundred were left by the time the animals were protected. Fortunately, they survived the farms and ranches and were no longer in danger.

Island-only species can also be easily hunted to extinction. Even the arrival of a small tribe can quickly wipe out a species on an island.

Furs, Skins, Feathers, Horns

Besides food, animals are often hunted for specific body parts such as their feathers, feathers or horns. Sometimes these animals are the main predator and therefore do not have large numbers to begin with. These species can quickly be hunted to extinction.

In Africa, elephants are aggressively hunted for their precious ivory horns. The population has grown from a few million to several hundred thousand. Today elephants are protected, but their numbers continue to decline in some areas due to poaching.

Another example is the tiger in China. Tigers are almost hunted to extinction for their precious fur and bones, which have been traditionally used for medicinal purposes. Today, it is still classified as an endangered species.

Loss of Habitat

One of the main threats facing animals today is habitat loss. This comes from human expansion, especially agriculture. When large tracts of land are cultivated for food production, natural habitats are destroyed. This can destroy many of the life cycles necessary for the survival of the organism and the development of the biome.


Human pollution can also kill a species. This is especially true in freshwater biomes such as rivers and lakes. Wastewater and runoff from industrial plants can contaminate water. When one species is affected, other species can also die, causing a chain reaction that throws off the balance of the ecosystem. introduced species

Introduced Species

When a new plant or animal species is introduced into an ecosystem, it can become invasive, quickly invading and killing other species. It can also destroy an important part of the food chain and have consequences for many other species.