Why do animals and plants become endangered?

Generally speaking, endangered species are those animals and plants that are in decline and may be in danger of extinction. A threatened species is one that is likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future.

Related Content

Filter Total Items: 25
USGS
June 3, 2008

Why do animals become endangered?

Listen to hear the answer.

Image: An Endangered Red Hawksbill Sea Turtle Swims Over a Threatened Elkhorn Coral in Virgin Islands National Park
January 29, 2008

An Endangered Red Hawksbill Sea Turtle Swims Over a Threatened Elkhorn Coral in Virgin Islands National Park

This photo shows an endangered hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) swimming over a colony of elkhorn coral (Acropora palmata).

USGS scientists are doing research on sea turtles and corals in Florida and the US Virgin Islands.

Image: Endangered Humpback Chub
April 12, 2006

Endangered Humpback Chub

U.S. Geological Survey scientists estimate that the adult population of humpback chub (Gila
cypha) in the Grand Canyon increased 50 percent between 2001 and 2008.

Image: Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
March 18, 2006

Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)

Hawksbill Sea Turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), such as the one hiding here under a boulder, and Green Sea Turtles (Chelonia mydas) are occasionally seen in Hurricane Hole. Hawksbills feed mostly on sponges while Greens eat mostly sea grasses.

Image: Endangered California Condor
October 18, 2003

Endangered California Condor

An endangered California condor flies over the Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuge, California. USGS scientists are helping managers understand how California condors use their habitat, gaining valuable information that will help inform not only which potential energy development sites are likely to have the least impact on condors but also which areas of Oregon might be

...
Image: Female Pallid Sturgeon
March 20, 2013

Female Pallid Sturgeon

CSRP Biologist Sabrina Davenport holding reproductive feamle pallid sturgeon, PLS11-020.

Image: Black-Footed Ferret

Black-Footed Ferret

The USGS National Wildlife Health Center is working to develop an oral vaccine to protect the endangered black-footed ferret from plague.

Image: An Endangered Devils Hole Pupfish

An Endangered Devils Hole Pupfish

A Devils Hole pupfish swims above the algae mat that typically covers the shallow spawning shelf in Devils Hole. 

Image: Release of a Satellite- and Acoustic-Tagged Endangered Adult Male Green Turtle Nicknamed Donald, Dry Tortugas National Park, June 2010

Release of a Satellite- and Acoustic-Tagged Endangered Adult Male Green Turtle Nicknamed Donald, Dry Tortugas National Park, June 2010

By tracking the movements of individual sea turtles with satellite and acoustic tags, we can determine habitat-use patterns of these endangered species throughout the marine ecosystem.

Image: Endangered Burrowing Owl

Endangered Burrowing Owl

An endangered Burrowing Owl near a site in Cape Coral, FL.

Image: Endangered Hawaiian Hoary Bat

Endangered Hawaiian Hoary Bat

An endangered Hawaiian hoary bat, a species that is sometimes killed by wind turbines. USGS scientists from Hawaii and Colorado are devising a way to directly observe bat occurrence and behavior at wind turbines using a video system composed of high-powered illuminators and near-infrared cameras.  This new approach images the full rotor-swept areas of wind turbines for

...