Welcome back to Around the World in 50 weeks, and my A-Z haiku series on endangered species. I continue to try and select a mix of known and lesser known species to heighten our awareness of the dangers many plants and animals face across our globe. 150-200 species go extinct daily around the world, and there are small acts on our part that can help preserve our partners on this planet. My G-I Haikus bring us a bird, mammal and reptile.
Perching on lava ledges.
These island hawks are heavily threatened and hunted almost to extinction to protect livestock. There are fewer than 200 pairs left! They are highly territorial; live in family groups and hunt together. They poach poultry and livestock such as small goats. These splendid birds of prey need our help.
Hawaiian Monk Seal
Munching fish, lobster and eel.
Basking on damp sand.
There are fewer than 1100 Hawaiian monk seals left in the wild. Commercial sealing back in the 1800s nearly wiped the species out, and it was once thought to be extinct until rediscovered and immediately placed on the endangered species list. Today they are threatened by human disturbance of pregnant or nursing females, reef poisoning, and shark attacks. A number of islands are now designated as reserves for this critically threatened species.
www.monksealfoundation.org for more information and how you can help
Up to thirty feet in length.
Coils suffocate prey!
The Indian python can be found in a wide range of habitats, including valleys, woodlands, forests, grasslands, swamps and marshes, and rocky foothills. There must be a good source of water within its range since this species depends heavily on it. They are docile creatures, even when found in the wild. The main threat to the species is habitat loss due to agricultural development. Some Indian pythons are illegally killed for their fine skin or for meat, which is eaten by locals. Also the fat contained in their skin is used in medicine. Indian pythons are protected by the Tamil Nadu Government, and the trade of pythons and any product that contains python parts is prohibited.