Canada is a beautiful country, it is home to about 80,000 species of plants and animals. While it is a great place for humans you can’t say that about animals. Many animals are going extinct in Canada and many are facing continuous population declines.
Living Planet Report Canada found that populations of at-risk species have declined 68% on average since 1970. This is because of climate change, the loss of forest and grassland, hunting, fishing, pollution, and diseases.
Almost 1,500 Canadian plants and animals are currently endangered. As of 2021, 554 animal species are at risk in Canada, according to the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. In addition, 18 are extirpated and 18 extinct.
In this list, we’ll discuss the critically endangered and endangered animals in Canada. These animals are on the brink of extinction if not taken care of. We’ll not discuss animals who are already extinct.
Here are the 10 animals going extinct in Canada.
1. Peary caribou
They are only found in Canada. The Peary caribou population has dropped from above 40,000 in 1961 to 13,200 adults in 2016, according to COSEWIC.
2. Right whale
There are three species of these whales – the North Atlantic right whale, North Pacific right whale, and Southern right whale. The North Atlantic and North Pacific right whales are among the most endangered whales in the world.
The North Atlantic right whale is classified as critically endangered. A total population estimate of 411 individuals remaining alive as of 2017. The North Pacific right whale population is also classed as endangered.
3. Beluga Whale
The beluga whale is considered critically endangered and is under the protection of the United States’ Endangered Species Act. Of all seven extant Canadian beluga populations inhabiting eastern Hudson Bay, Ungava Bay, and the St. Lawrence River are listed as endangered.
4. Whooping crane
There were just 21 wild and 2 captive whooping cranes by 1941. They were on brink of extinction by unregulated hunting and loss of habitat.
After that many conservation efforts have led to a limited recovery. As of 2020, there were an estimated 677 birds living in wild. While 177 birds were at the time held in captivity at 17 institutions in Canada and the United States, putting the total current population at over 800.
5. Vancouver Island Marmot
By 2003, it was estimated that only 30 remained in the wild. Conservation efforts are being made to save these animals. The Marmot Recovery Foundation has since counted 250-300 marmots in 2015. More numbers are expected in the upcoming years in the wild population.
6. Blanding’s turtle
The Blanding’s turtle is listed as endangered in Canada. In the last decade, their numbers have declined by 30%. It is also listed as an endangered species on the IUCN Red List.
In Canada, the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River population in Ontario and Quebec is threatened. And the Nova Scotia population is endangered. Population estimated Less than 500 in Nova Scotia.
7. Ord’s kangaroo rat
They are common species in the United States but the population in Canada is considered endangered. According to SARA and 2006 COSEWIC assessment, it is listed as Endangered. The Canadian population has dropped to 1,000 or fewer individuals.
8. Black-footed Ferret
Once thought to be globally extinct but due to recovery efforts, they have made a comeback. It was first listed as “endangered” in 1982, then listed as “extinct in the wild” in 1996. It was again listed as endangered in the IUCN Red List in 2008.
There are now over 1,000 ferrets living in the wild. Despite the conversation efforts black-footed ferret remains one of the most endangered animals in the world.
9. Chinook Salmon
Chinook Salmon or King Salmon is one of Canada’s most iconic fish species. The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada has completed assessment on 15 populations of Chinook Salmon in Canada and determined that 13 are Threatened or Endangered.
10. Monarch Butterfly
In 2016, the COSEWIC listed the Monarch Butterfly as Endangered. WWF’s 2013 report from Mexico showed that the number of monarch butterflies wintering there was at its lowest in 20 years. In Nova Scotia, the monarch is listed as endangered at the provincial level, as of 2017.