12 Animals That Are No Longer Endangered
Animals at the risk of extinction are endangered. While there are several animals that are critically endangered, there are some that, for different reasons, are no longer on that list. With proper conservation efforts and support, endangered animals can be brought back to healthy numbers and can continue to live for generations to come as part of Earth’s vast ecosystem.
Let’s look at 12 animals that have made a miraculous comeback from the brinks of extinction.
Southern White Rhinoceros
This should not be confused with the Northern white rhinoceros, tragically on the brink of extinction. In fact, there are only two northern rhinos left on earth, both female; the male died in 2018.
The southern white rhinos were also thought to be at the risk of extinction until a group of 100 was found in 1895 in Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa. Ever since, efforts have been made to protect and keep them. The good news? This rhino species is now the only one of all five types of rhinos that is not endangered. They are now found in different parts of Africa, including South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Kenya.
Yellowstone Grizzly Bear
Some years ago, a lot before 2017, the yellow grizzly bear was among the endangered animals. But, controversially, after 2017, the number of this species of bears grew up to 700. Therefore, the Yellowstone grizzly bear has lost its endangered classification.
Manatees are aquatic animals, primarily recognized by where they live. These animals have been victims to seekers of their shrouds, oil and bones. This is particularly so because manatees are slow-moving animals that frequent beachfront waters and fronts.
Due to excessive intrusion of these predators, especially human activities, manatees have declined in numbers in recent centuries. However, these aquatic animals are no longer endangered thanks to the authorities' efforts. Although they still face threats from humans, they are now one of the animals that are no longer endangered.
In 2016, the Giant Panda Bear, which has long been the symbol of wildlife conservation via the World Wildlife Fund, was officially bumped off the endangered list, as the population of Giant Pandas living in the wild jumped to just over 1,800.
The Bald Eagle
Habitat loss, hunting, and more commonly, the widespread use of DDT (an insecticide that weakens avian eggshells), were some of the threats that almost drove this American icon to extinction. In fact, for most of the 20th century (precisely 1963), with just 417 wild pairs left in all the lower 48 states of the United States, the bald eagle was among the most endangered animals.
However, the U.S. government enacted a series of laws, including a 1973 ban on DDT that was implemented by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to prevent this iconic creature from going to extinction. Well, the efforts paid off as approximately 10,000 wild breeding pairs are soaring around in the lower 48.
This pacific seabird, which lives in New Zealand, was downgraded from endangered to vulnerable in 2015, thanks to local conservation efforts.
The Arabian Oryx is a desert antelope indigenous to the Middle East. Reckless hunting devastated the species, which became essentially extinct in the wild during the early 1970s.
However, a few were still alive and well in captivity. So, in the 1980s, American zoos joined forces with conservationists in Jordan to launch a massive breeding program.
Thanks to their efforts, the Oryx was successfully reintroduced to the Arabian Peninsula, where over 1000 wild specimens now roam (with a captive population of about 7000). Therefore, the Arabian Oryx is one of the lucky animals that are no longer endangered.
The Brown Pelican
The DDT almost drove into extinction another iconic creature and Louisiana's State’s bird, the Brown Pelican. In 1938, there were only about 38 Brown Pelicans left, and between the 1950s and 1960s, these birds became even more scarce. Yeah, during this period, DDT became a common sight amongst farmers. As if that was not bad enough, in 1963, not a single Brown Pelican was sighted anywhere in Louisiana when a census was conducted.
Good news, now that we are no longer in the DDT era, the Pelican is back with a vengeance on the Gulf Coast and no longer considered endangered.
Virginia Northern Flying Squirrel
Back in 1985, the Northern flying squirrel was on the list of endangered animals. Only ten squirrels were caught in four separate territories of its range. Fortunately, the government and state researchers have acquired more than 1,100 squirrels at more than 100 locales, and trust that these subspecies will never again face the risk of elimination.
The Northern Elephant Seal
The Northern Elephant Seal became endangered due to the activities of commercial hunters because of its oil-rich blubber. Back in 1892, some believed it had gone into extinction. In 1910, a small group of about 100 seals was discovered on Guadalupe Island.
By 1922, Mexico had turned the landmass into a government-protected biological preserve. From a place of security, that handful of pinnipeds bred. Today, every one of the 160,000 living Northern Elephant Seals on planet Earth is from that small group found in Mexico.
Steller Sea Lion
Named after the naturalist Georg Steller, Steller Sea Lions are local to Alaska, although they sometimes drift to as far South as California. These animals are particularly very large. Because of chasing, over-angling of Alaska Pollock and Herring, and common human-caused conflict, these animals were on the brink of extinction.
The numbers started decreasing in the early 1970s, and by 1979, there were only about 18,000 Steller Sea Lions left. In 1990, they were on the list of endangered animals. Fortunately, this awesome creature made a remarkable comeback. Today, the Steller Sea Lion’s population is believed to be over 70,000, with a healthy increase of 4% every year.
This reptile, native to Puerto Rico, was listed as endangered in 1982 because black rats were eating it. The rats have now been eradicated from the island where these creatures live in Puerto Rico. Monito Geckos now thrive, with a population of up to 11,000 now living on the island.
Although this list is not exhaustive, it's an excellent start to the world of animals that made a miraculous comeback from the brink of extinction!