Inching toward extinction: Only 5000 of the world's largest gorillas left on Earth!

Officials at the International Union for Conservation of Nature's global conference in Honolulu confirmed that the majestic species of Eastern Gorillas (Gorilla beringei) now faces the risk of disappearing completely, with just 5,000 left on Earth.

Updated: Sep 07, 2016, 19:45 PM IST
Inching toward extinction: Only 5000 of the world's largest gorillas left on Earth!

New Delhi: Poaching is a widespread industry growing at a fast pace and this practice is promoting the already flourishing business of illegal wildlife trade.

The importance of the existence of our animals and our biodiversity is etched in the functioning of the universe, however, marred by selfish motives, mankind only seeks personal benefits, which involves killing these priceless treasures of nature.

As a result, animals are fast reaching the rungs of extinction and the latest species to fall victim to this are the world's largest gorillas.

Officials at the International Union for Conservation of Nature's global conference in Honolulu confirmed that the majestic species of Eastern Gorillas (Gorilla beringei) now faces the risk of disappearing completely, with just 5,000 left on Earth.

Four out of six of the Earth's great apes are now critically endangered, "only one step away from going extinct," including the Eastern Gorilla, Western Gorilla, Bornean Orangutan and Sumatran Orangutan, said the IUCN in an update to its Red List, the world's most comprehensive inventory of plant and animal species.

Chimpanzees and bonobos are listed as endangered.

"Today is a sad day because the IUCN Red List shows we are wiping out some of our closest relatives," Inger Andersen, IUCN director general, told reporters.

War, hunting and loss of land to refugees in the past 20 years have led to a "devastating population decline of more than 70 percent," for the Eastern gorilla, said the IUCN's update.

One of the two subspecies of Eastern gorilla, known as Grauer's gorilla (G. b. graueri), has drastically declined since 1994 when there were 16,900 individuals, to just 3,800 in 2015.

Apart from poaching, illegal hunting, climate change and habitat loss are also reasons behind their extinction.

(With Agency inputs)