Human-caused extinction, a plague on our conscience


Francis Emelogu/The Cougar


Some humans shamefully further intoxicate our planet, leaving a vibrant stain for future generations to scrub.

In the last 40 years, half of the Earth’s various species have become extinct because of human activity.

Scientists affirm that the sixth mass extinction is  taking place because of things like pollution, deforestation and over fishing.

With all this happening, why would anyone consider killing endangered animals?

The University of Copenhagen Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate announced last month one of the most unusual rhino species, the Sumatran rhino, is now extinct in Malaysia.

Experts consider yearly extinctions of one to five species somewhat of a normality. However, that rate has been accelerated by humans, causing dozens of extinctions daily.

People poach rhinos for their iconic horn and reduce their habitat space and displacement of rhino’s are grounds of extinction, researchers said.

Now, experts worry remaining rhino population in Malaysia exist extremely distant of each other.

“It is vital for the survival of the species that all remaining Sumatran rhinos are viewed as a metapopulation, meaning that all are managed in a single program across national and international borders to maximize overall birth rate,” lead author and doctoral student Rasmus Gren Havmøller from the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate said.

Less than 100 Sumatran rhino’s are believed to continue living, and that’s just an estimate.

Ancient traditional Asian medicine and various folk remedies, among other reasons, have been the cause of the poaching of rhino’s and other wild animals, like tigers.

The tiger is among the most beautiful creatures on Earth. The way they move, their fur coat, teeth, are all perfect reasons to admire, respect and adore, not poach.

Sadly, only 3,000 wild tigers remain on Earth.

“When I tell people that just 3,200 tigers are left in the wild, their mouths drop,” National Geographic’s Sharon Guynup said. “And that was last year: In discussions with some of the world’s top tiger experts over the last month, I’ve learned that the current number now may hover closer to 3,000.”

Not only are innocent creatures being killed and captured for the components of their bodily structure, many are sold alive on the black market or private transactions.

“There are about that many captive tigers in Texas,” Guynup said. “Most of those are privately owned.”

According to reports, purchasing an animal is but a call and financial transaction away.

Neighboring country, Mexico, is home to one of the various trading and selling locations of wild animals, making it the largest black market in the world.

For about $7,000, a fully grown tiger can be purchased.

Much like drug trafficking, Mexico serves as a tactical and magical vanishing act to the exploitation of exotic animals sold to the U.S. market.

Living creatures, whether animals, plants, insects or fellow classmates, must always be treated with dignity, respect and love.

We share this world with other animals, and they have just a right to life as we do.

Opinion columnist Sebastian Troitiño is a finance and marketing junior and may be reached at [email protected]

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